The grandmillennial home trend is all about nostalgia

Soft pastels and florals are main characteristics of the grandmillenial trend. Photo and design by Emily Wood Interiors.

One of interior design’s latest trends is taking us back to a time when empire-box-pleated lampshades, quilted throw pillows and curtain tassels were all the rage, and when floral patterns and pastels reigned supreme. The nostalgia that informs the “grandmillennial” trend is inspiring even the youngest members of the home-decorating crowd to turn away from the sleek vibes of modernism in favor of older generations’ familiar comforts.

The aesthetic is said to have begun taking off in 2019 when House Beautiful writer Emma Bazilian coined the term. A far cry from the trendy modern aesthetic young people tend to lean toward, the style usually consists of details like latticework, ruffles, frills, brocade, and other elements similar to the lingering influence of cottagecore.

I think the aesthetic takes younger people back to the comfort of Grandma’s house,” says decorator Emily Wood of  Emily Wood Interiors. “It reminds them of their childhood.”

That doesn’t mean that incorporating the trend makes a space frumpy or outdated, though. The key to this aesthetic is balancing those nostalgic elements with the contemporary in order to create a space that speaks to the past while acknowledging the present.

“Different elements of grandmillennial style are tasteful, but when you combine pastels, florals, chintz, wicker, lattice and everything in between all together, it becomes overkill,” Wood says. 

To Wood, incorporating simple aspects of the aesthetic little by little is what will lead to flawless execution. She recommends choosing elements like light shades of blue, pink and green, as well as a touch of tasteful florals. 

“This is where a design can go from a success to a faux pas,” said Wood. “In my opinion, it is very hard to execute a good timeless floral. There has to be a certain lightness to the pattern, or it goes ‘granny’ really quick.”


To see more of Emily Wood, follow her on Instagram @ewoodinteriors. And be sure to follow @inregister for more interiors stories.