While the interior design world continues to be dominated by the farmhouse home decor trend mixing stark white, minimalist interiors with black and natural wood accents, another smaller trend has recently emerged, and to say it’s the polar opposite is an understatement. Meet grandmillennial style, aka “granny chic.” Boasting more than 43,000 posts under the #grandmillennialdecor on Instagram, the trend has amassed a vigorously devoted fan club. More proof: The search phrase “grandmillennial decor” is up 13 times since this time last year on Pinterest.
What is grandmillennial style?
Marrying patterns and colors, textures and materials — and yes, even needlepoint and wicker — the aesthetic was first ID’d by House Beautiful, which described grandmillennials as being in their mid-20s to late 30s and “having an affinity for design trends considered by mainstream culture to be ‘stuffy’ or ‘outdated’ — Laura Ashley prints, ruffles, embroidered linens.” In other words, it’s for design lovers who are essentially trying to resurrect their grandma’s living room.
“Grandmillennial style is a generational rebellion against the sleek minimalism of midcentury modern design,” Rebecca Breslin, senior design manager for Wayfair Professional, says. “While the trend has been around for a year or two, we’re seeing it spread from living rooms and bedrooms to kitchens and bathrooms.”
Further explained, Roxy Te Owens, the founder of the next-generation furniture brand Society Social and the host of ABC’s TV show “Localish,” says, “A grandmillennial space invites you in; it exudes a sense of comfort and warmth brought to life through the mix of natural materials such as wicker, rattan and wood paired with the beautiful organic texture of tassels, ruffles and pleated skirts.”
But while Grandma’s old-school aesthetic might be the grandmillennial inspiration, an exact replica is not the goal, says interior designer Eric Ross, owner of the Nashville-based design firm Eric Ross Interiors. “Grandmillennial style is about embracing tradition design elements and presenting them in a fresh way,” Ross says. “Find the pieces from your mother or grandmother’s collections that are timeless and classic, and then mix them with small prints paired with larger-scale florals and use blue and white porcelain and other touches of chinoiserie. Incorporate some upholstery or a rug that’s an animal print. Yes to toile. Yes to fringe.”
More must-haves to nail the look, says Owens, include “a tasseled trim sofa, a wicker stool draped in a punchy print or an accent pillow in a timeless chintz. A grandmillennial has an appreciation for the past, [they are] devotees of classic style with a passion for tradition…with a twist. Think warm, gorgeously layered spaces, a mix of prints, patterns, colors, as well as textiles galore.”
To help get you on your grandmillennial way, we’ve rounded up a slew of our favorites that, when layered together in your space, will evoke the time-honored styles of yore — mixed in with traces of your personality too, of course.
Pierce Wicker Side Table ($99; urbanoutfitters.com)
Grandmillennials can’t get enough wicker in their lives, but the wood material doesn’t come cheap. That’s why we’re obsessed with this sweet little side table from Urban Outfitters that rings in at just under 100 bucks.
York Wallcoverings Havenview Mural ($228; anthropologie.com)
Chinoiserie — aka art and furniture that evoke 18th-century Chinese motifs — is a key grandmillennial component, and this gorgeous paste-free mural from Anthropologie fits the bill.
INeedABiggerHouse Welcome Vintage Needlepoint Door Hanger Sign ($42; etsy.com)
While we didn’t ever see needlepoint coming back in style, here we are! We love this cute Etsy sign that welcomes guests. And if you prefer a pillow, the same mantra is available on one for a bit more, along with a slew of other cheeky designs.
Threshold Designed With Studio McGee Palmdale Woven Door Console ($330; target.com)
Channel the wicker and bamboo motifs beloved by grandmillennials with this chic console from Threshold’s collab with Studio McGee. The woven doors are our favorite design detail, but we also adore the light-hued wood and the ample storage the piece provides.
MerceriaNoeViu Big Tassel Pulls ($36.61; etsy.com)
Gussy up an old dresser or TV console with these super-chic tassels that are a favorite among grandmillennial decor influencers. Fear not: If these hues are not for you, the Etsy store owner MerceriaNoeViu has dozens of other style and color options here.
The Inside X Bench ($299; theinside.com)
The Inside is one of our favorite brands for affordable custom furnishings, and this X-shaped bench is the epitome of how fab its wares are. Chic? Check. Custom? Given that it comes in 125 more patterns, check. Affordable? At under 300 bucks, yep, that’s a check. Never has chintz looked so stylish.
Food52 Vintage French Transferware Serving Platter & Mixed Plates (starting at $98; food52.com)
If you don’t have access to Nana’s family china, no worries! We can now head to Food52 for all your vintage servingware needs. This collection features a set of four plates ($128), each featuring an eclectic French design, as well as a coordinating serving platter ($98).
Birch Lane Miron Undermount Kitchen Sink ($573.99, originally $699; wayfair.com)
Wayfair’s Breslin told us that Edwardian kitchens are a big trend on the site, driven by the uptick in grandmillennial interest. This sink is a perfect fit for the trend, and we love the rustic antique copper hue.
Golden Hour Chandelier ($749.95, originally $998; anthropologie.com)
Did our grandmas have crystal chandeliers in their houses? Of course! Mimic their style with this ultra-elegant version that will look gorgeous in a sitting room and entryway alike.
Grecian Bust Pot (starting at $22, anthropologie.com)
Add a hefty dose of ancient Grecian panache to your room with these cement busts that can be kept indoors or out. Great for adding height to a table or shelf, the busts double as potters, so they can hold your greenery too.
Toile Sheet Set (starting at $59; urbanoutfitters.com)
Not only can toile show up on your walls, but it can make a statement on your sheets too. This lovely set is beloved by reviewers, and the blue-and-white color scheme is just so classic.
Tempaper Pink Lemonade Tropical Peel-and-Stick Wallpaper ($30.49, regularly $33.88; amazon.com)
Wall coverings are a big, resounding yes for grandmillennials, and the busier the print, the better. This option from peel-and-stick brand Tempaper will add a whole lot of depth, pattern and lemonade-hued cheer to your space.
Hawthorne Wallpaper ($110 per roll; riflepaperco.com)
This one is more classic, with floral accents. We also love that it’s available in all sorts of colors, from dramatic black to light and cheery white.
Mercer41 Horacia Curio Shelf ($119.99, regularly $205; wayfair.com)
Oozing with chinoiserie style, this cute little shelf is perfect for the nooks and crannies in your home. We love the gold-plated design, and that it can be wall mounted too.
Ballard Blue & White Chinoiserie Collection (starting at $99; ballard.com)
Another unanimous grandmillennial style fave? Blue and white porcelain. For those who don’t have time to seek it out at antique stores, check out Ballard’s Chinoiserie Collection, which has eight timeless shape options that will look perfect atop a console, breakfast table or bookshelf. If you’re looking for a more neutral color palette, check out Frontgate’s collection of vases, gourds and bowls in soothing creamy hues.
Rifle Paper Co. x Loloi Luxembourg Rug (starting at $50; riflepaperco.com)
Two brands we love? Rifle Paper Co. and Loloi. So you can only imagine how excited we were about the stunning area rug collaboration between the two. The result is this bold, floral-patterned rug that would be the perfect backdrop to a grandmillennial-styled space.
Melody Rattan Bar Cart ($499; urbanoutfitters.com)
Bar carts are a home decor must, and this one would look right at home in your grandma’s Florida living room. We love the retro rattan detailing, the ample storage and the fact that it’s got wheels.
Maison d’ Hermine The Miller 100% Cotton Curtain ($44.99; amazon.com)
Toile curtains, anyone? Yes, please! Available in four sizes and 25 prints and hues, these cotton panels contain both a rod pocket and panel loop, allowing for easy hanging.
Zebra Natural Rug (starting at $109; ruggable.com)
Follow Ross’ animal print rug advice with this chic zebra print option from Ruggable. Machine-washable and available in nine shapes and sizes, the rug also comes in three colorways. Check out our review of Ruggable rugs here.