This is not your Nana’s living room – but it is inspired by it. Grandmillennial decor is an increasingly popular trend in 2021, with our collective yearning for the comforts of nostalgia. What is grandmillennial style? The name says it all: it’s a combination of cozy grandparent-inspired grandeur (think lots of pattern, texture and personal touches) and sleek millennial sensibilities (think curated colour palettes and modern elements). By embracing throwback decor elements – but bringing them into the present with modern and stylish tweaks – grandmillennial decor is the perfect way to create a living space that’s packed with character and charm. To help design lovers of any age channel classic Nana vibes, here are 10 grandmillennial-style living rooms for inspiration.
Certain materials and furniture items instantly evoke a classic feel in a space, so adding a few throwback pieces in an otherwise modern room is a simple way to master that grandmillennial feel. Take these chairs: cane furniture was very on-trend in the ’70s and ’80s, and it delivers chic juxtaposition to a soft pastel colour palette and modern details like a clear lucite coffee table.
The fastest track to grandmillennial decor? Invest in lots of soft textiles and comfy layers, as this Home Town living room designed by Erin Napier perfectly illustrates. Lots of layers serves two functions: it keeps your living space comfortable (win) while also letting you bring in lots of patterns and prints (double win).
Pattern and prints are a major tenet of traditional style, which makes boldly patterned wallpaper an easy way to frame your living room in grandmillennial style. Bonus points? Choose a pattern with a personal connection for added character – the unique wallpaper used in this Rock Solid Builds living room is inspired by the abundant blueberries in the Newfoundland home’s surrounding area.
If you love colour, let it shine with a vibrant grandmillennial living room featuring primary colours and layers of pattern. Here, the bold colour palette and array of prints (very old school) are made more millennial with clean-lined furnishings and playful wall art.
If clean-lined, minimal living rooms leave you uninspired, layering decor with older history-rich pieces can bring character to your space. This living room vignette frames a simple sofa with vintage-looking furniture and accessories like a fancy lamp and bookshelf. Bright accents and soft textiles keep the look in this decade.
Grandmillennial decor doesn’t have to be loud. Here, a neutral-toned minimal living room gets a touch of throwback style via a classic wingback chair and vintage suitcase-turned-side-table.
Take on Tufted
Throwback doesn’t have to be fussy. As this grandmillennial Home Town living room designed by Erin Napier shows, a statement-making tufted sofa delivers a subtle touch of traditional – the perfect base for layering on plenty of printed pillows. Shopping for seating? Check out these timeless sofa styles (and how to decorate with them).
Pops of Personality
Balance is key when keeping grandmillennial decor fresh. As Samantha Pynn and contractors Kate Campbell and Dave Coleman showcase with this Family Home Overhaul living room, a little goes a long way. While the feature wall is mostly clean and neutral, an intricate woods-themed wallpaper brings a splash of character to the built-in shelving. Here are more stylish living room shelving ideas to elevate your design (and organization).
Use Neutrals as a Base
The key to grandmillennial style is to balance retro details with modern touches. In this Home Town living room design from Erin Napier, neutral and muted tones in the furnishings keep the room modern and act as a base against the pops of blue and prints.
When choosing art for a grandmillennial living room, consider the big picture. If the walls are brightly painted or patterned, minimal modern art can provide balance. Alternatively, as this living room shows, minimal white walls can take on traditional art or paintings for a grand effect that’s not overdone. Here are some other ideas for living room wall art that makes a statement.