Trend Alert: Casual Luxury

by GR Chair

Falling somewhere between modern and traditional, you will find our last and most versatile design trend: casual luxury. This style can be achieved by using tried and true materials with an emphasis on high performance and luxurious fabrics. Warmth and comfort are at the heart of the style, so for our take on this trend  (you can also see it in our new Finish Palette brochure), we opted for a mix of tweed, velvet, and boucle in jewel-toned colorways. Below are some of our favorite installations, projects, and moments that encapsulate this cozy and cool trend. 

GRCC---Cozy---GIFFabrics from top to bottom: Burch Portrait, Maharam Passel, Maharam Roam, Maharam Deconstructed Rose. Blue Tile: Heath Ceramic, LG1 Frost. Also shown: Cobalt Blue Sample Chip & Natural Maple Sample Chip.

1. The Gilded Bar in The Deco

The Deco New York blue bar interior designLeo Chair in Ink Black with upholstered seat in a light peach leather by Maharam. Image by Emily Andrews. 

We've seen some gorgeous spaces over the past year that truly capture the spirit of this commercial design trend, like at The Deco, an Art Deco-inspired food court designed by Carpenter & Mason. They used simple materials like brass and leather, which will age and patina beautifully over time to create a sense of familiarity and comfort. The sense of luxury comes from the French garden-inspired layout and the grandeur of the bar. 

2. The Maroon Moment in Serafina

Cozy_Restaurant_Design_Grand_Rapids_ChairReece chairs in Serafina.  Image by Rafael Soldi

Old school Italian eatery meets modern sophistication. Inside Seattle's beloved Serafina, you'll find casual luxury at its finest. White tablecloths and checkered black and white floors are met with maroon paneling and mid-century Reece chairs that  create a layered and modern elegance. Serafina was designed by Best Practice Architecture

3. Classic Plaid in Modern Colorways

casual-luxury-outfit-inspirationLeft: photo via Pinterest; Right: photo via Pinterest

Nothing says cozy quite like a wool jumper or a hearty plaid look. However, that story can get old and outdated quickly. Plaid takes on a new sense of sophistication when paired with bright and unexpected colorways like mustard, emerald, and terracotta. Bonus points for a matching boot.

Mad for plaid? Incorporate these gorgeous and commercial-grade plaids and checks into your next project:

4. The Draped Room at Proxi


There are many things we love about Proxi, a fine dining restaurant located in Chicago. Aside from the amazing multicultural menu and polished design, we're smitten with their cozy and cool private dining room. At first glance, you're met with glamorous red drapes flanked by two well-stocked wine racks. Once inside the private dining area, a solid wood communal table and stunning black Merano armchairs ground the space. Where private dining rooms can feel like cheesy VIP club, Proxi delivers an casual sense of luxury made apparent by sumptuous textures and warm, earthy tones.  

5. New Soft Seats


casual-luxury-by-grand-rapids-chair-coTop: Alfred Chair; Left: Sigsbee Chair; Right: Ferdinand Chair

While we're known creating steel and mixed material chairs, lately we've been exploring the softer side of seating. Our line now includes three fully upholstered chairs including the Alfred, Sigsbee, and Ferdinand—all designed with comfort and elegance in mind. 

For more on this trend and other emerging design trends, download our new 2021 Finish Palette brochure below.