Home and garden trends include bold colors, outdoor living

Although the weather may not realize it, spring is here, and it’s time start those DIY projects.

We attended the seventeenth annual Dayton Home and Garden Show at the Dayton Convention Center last weekend and talked with several gardeners and designers to get the inside scoop on this year’s top trends in home improvement.

1. Bold paint colors

An easy, cost-effective way to change the look of a room is by adding a new wall covering or a fresh coat of paint. But if you’re still stuck in neutral, consider trying a more exciting hue.

“People are coming out of their comfort zones and trying more bold colors,” said Monica Harris, an interior designer with Home Comfort Gallery in Troy. “It’s nice to see people breaking out of the mold.”

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“The color of the year is emerald green,” added interior designer Sharon Bledsoe of Sharon Bledsoe Designs in Pleasant Hill, also noting that “wallpaper is making a comeback, which we haven’t seen in quite a while. Sometimes a subtle pattern can add a lot of interest to walls.”

2. Revamped garages

If you’re looking to add some value to your home without breaking the bank for an addition, consider an unlikely space: the garage. “A new garage floor is an easy fix if you want to increase the value of your home,” said Shea McNally of Garage Floor Coating of Southwest Ohio.

A new floor doesn’t mean another boring, concrete slab. Garage floors are available in a variety of colors and textures like granite. If you’re worried about parking cars and doing projects on a decorative floor, it’s no big deal, said McNally. “Our floors are made of a poly-hybrid, which becomes one with the concrete. Instead of just sticking to concrete, it actively fuses with it.”

3. Outdoor living

The biggest trend in landscaping, said Mark Webber, owner of Mark Webber’s Landscaping Company in Dayton, is “outdoor living, people using their yards as a vacation destination.” He’s seen a rise in customers wanting water features, seating, outdoor kitchens and gardens with “four seasons of color changes” to keep their retreats beautiful all year long.

“Yards are more than just grass,” Webber said. “People are using them as an extension of their homes, as places to relax.” The good news about this trend is that you can add a few new plants, a small water feature and some inexpensive seating for a wallet-friendly retreat or stretch your wallet toward a state-of-the-art outdoor kitchen.

4. Quartz countertops

“When it first came out, granite used to be the big seller,” said Linda Ruble of Classic Cabinets and Remodeling in Kettering. But the expense and amount of upkeep required for granite countertops has people looking toward new trends like textured laminate and quartz.

“Now there are laminate countertops made to look like granite, which is much cheaper,” Ruble said. But if you want to add a little more value to your house or simply prefer a natural material, think quartz.

“Quartz doesn’t require yearly maintenance like granite. It doesn’t scratch, you can place hot pans directly on it, and it doesn’t stain,” said Ruble. “All you really need to do is keep it clean.”

5. Agrarian lifestyle

Ever wonder just where and how your chicken was produced? Or whether your organic vegetables live up to their label? You’re not alone, according to Webber. The home agrarian movement is taking off so people “can ensure that what they’re putting into their bodies is clean.”

“People are becoming more self-reliant in their food production,” explained Webber. “Backyard chicken coops are huge right now.” He suggests checking with your municipality to make sure raising chickens doesn’t violate any local ordinances.

If gathering eggs and plucking feathers sounds a little too rustic, consider growing pots of herbs or a plot of veggies. Plenty of varieties of both grow easily in our region, and most herbs require little maintenance.

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