Thursday, February 1, 2024

Winter Warm-Up

Design by Serba Interiors, Photo by Justin Maconochie

Designers across the board agree that warm tones such as cream, brown, caramel, beige, and lots of toasty woods will be big in 2024. Creating a feeling like the warm hug of a cashmere throw isn’t limited to color though. Texture plays an equally important role in building that hygge atmosphere. Read on to hear what these creatives have to say about warming up your own space.

Design by Colleen Farrell Design, Photo by Beth Singer

Photo by Beth Singer

“Our client was looking for a handsome and comfortable cigar and scotch lounge with a concealed humidor and scotch storage for an extensive collection in their Birmingham home. The rug in this space demonstrates how colors ranging from light to dark (cream, camel, olive, bronze, charcoal, and ebony), work together beautifully when each selection is a warm version of the color. You could even throw lime green into the mix if it has a warm undertone to it. Likewise, a warm plum tone will work. All colors work together when they are paired with a compatible tone.” – Colleen Farrell, Colleen Farrell Design


  • Natural fibers are best for providing comfort and warmth. A big, soft, sound-absorbing area rug grounds and warms a room. Wool is fantastic for moderating body temperature. It’s as comfortable underfoot in the winter as it is in the summer.
  • Using warm colors such as spicy and earthy tones soothe and quiet the mind, while satin metallics reflect a soft glow.
  • Window treatments help to control the warmth of a space—whether you have them wide open on sunny days or pulled shut on blustery cold days to create a cocoon of warmth.

Available at MDC: Leather, Tennant & Associates; Mohair, Kravet / Lee Jofa / Brunschwig & Fils

Design by Armina Interiors, Photo by Martin Vecchio

Photo by Martin Vecchio

“This previously very basic and neutral powder room is part of a lower-level entertaining space that was transformed into a space that is visually layered and has a dramatic feel. The walls are clad in a non-traditional plaster that has a very dark, polished metal-like finish. It’s really beautiful. We chose a floating vanity to open the space and a travertine sink adds warmth. The light source behind the mirror accents the wall as well as creates dramatic illumination and shadows.” – Armina Kasprowicz, Armina Interiors


  • If you want to warm up a space, my golden rule is to focus on color and texture. And warmth doesn’t necessarily come from the color alone. You can use contrasting textures such as a shaggy wool rug under a glossy wood table, for example.
  • Earthy, warm tones have replaced cool gray tones which have been popular for many years. If you want to update a space that has a gray foundation, I recommend introducing peaceful taupe hues, soft mossy greens, and silver tones.

Available at MDC: Pendant Light Fixture, Lighting Resource Studio

Design by Serba Interiors, Photo by Justin Maconochie

Photo by Justin Maconochie

“This is my home, ‘Highview,’ in Saugatuck. My goal was to have large, open rooms, providing natural light and great views. Additionally, I used a combination of neutral fabrics, as well as warm wood tones. The space feels comfortable throughout all four seasons.” – Kevin Serba, Serba Interiors

Design by Serba Interiors, Photo by James Haefner

Photo by James Haefner

“I designed built-in walnut cabinetry for this Bay City riverside penthouse to add warmth and architectural interest for this light-filled space. Furthermore, I incorporated warm, neutral fabrics and rugs to complement the wood tones.  – Kevin Serba, Serba Interiors


  • Combine different fabric textures such as linens, soft wools, leather, and mohair.
  • Rather than using color as a focal point on walls or main furniture pieces, integrate color through accents and art. This allows the eye to enjoy the home’s views and surroundings without distractions.
  • To add warmth and interest, use wood tones for an accent ceiling, wall, or with furniture.
  • Connect warm neutrals such as creams and beige tones with something bolder such as browns or warm grays. This can add contrast and interest in rugs and accent fabrics.

Available at MDC: Leather, Pillow, and Sofa fabric, Tennant & Associates; Mohair Chair Fabric, Schumacher; Chair Pillow Fabric, Kravet / Lee Jofa / Brunschwig & Fils


Design by Anna Versaci Design, Photo by Matteo Morrison

Photo by Matteo Morrison

“The owners of this Birmingham home wanted their lower-level walk-out to be a cohesive guest space rather than just a basement with a bedroom. They were looking for a luxuriously understated space with layered neutrals and a warm, welcoming atmosphere.” – Anna Versaci, Anna Versaci Design


  • Every home should have a sense of warmth—it’s essential. Wood, brass, and gold all create warmth in a space. A touch of brass could find a place in any home. Boucle fabrics, throw blankets, comfy pillows, and drapery in general adds warmth. Creamy-white, triple-pleat drapery is a home run.
  • I really love deep red warm tones—think a hand-knotted Persian rug. But you can create warmth simply through texture—as with different neutrals coming together. I like mixing various neutrals together like white, cream, and bone.
  • Mix your metals. Don’t be afraid, just do it. Brass and polished nickel are beautiful together.

Available at MDC: Side Table, Stools, Sofa, Chairs, and Lighting, CAI Designs

Design by Paige Loperfido

“The owners of this Lake Orion home asked for my help in pulling their space together with items they already owned, like the pictured shelf. This space is a catwalk that is visible from the formal entryway, so I wanted to be sure it looked finished. We added decorative millwork on the entryway wall for added dimension and painted it in a creamy white for a cozy overall feel.” – Paige Loperfido, Decor & More Designs


  • Add texture using things made from natural elements such as baskets, grasscloth wallpaper, and wool area rugs.
  • Don't be afraid to use color! I am very drawn to deep maroons/reds right now.
  • Brass and wood tones not only bring warmth to a room but are timeless.
  • I love pairing greens and blues with yellows and golds, as well as orangey/coral tones with blues and teals. These combinations are very complimentary together.