Big announcement that might change your life and reduce all home hesitation or shopping stress: it’s my personal belief/theory that one of the biggest trends of this upcoming year is actually timelessness. It’s like ordering a healthy meal that also tastes delicious; it rarely happens so when it does, you get excited and, well, want to stuff your face/house. We are calling this look “Updated Classic;” it’s a touch similar in feel to the Modern Traditional aesthetic we blogged about here, but with more livability and far more attainable for all. The good news is that Target’s new fall Threshold collection is full of it—every piece you see in this reveal that we styled is affordable, beautiful and available now at our favorite store, Target.
Before I show you too much, I want to talk a little about why I think people are leaning more into traditional. I believe the reason for this trend shift is cultural, people wanting warmth and the comfort of “traditional” but with accessories and accent pieces that still feel contemporary and edgy. We want to avoid chaos without too many conflicting colors or busy patterns, but still have spaces that feel layered and comfortable.
We also want to know that our money is stretching further with major pieces we buy—the more traditional and classic, the higher chance that they will work with any style in the case that our house or style shifts. So the furniture in this collection is transitional and is so simple it literally can’t be dated for years and years to come.
“Updated Classic” is happening and today I’m going to walk you through how to look for and combine your pieces to successfully create a look like we did, whether it’s with pieces you already have or if you are starting fresh (lucky you; like I said, it’s just a one-stop shop at Target).
Step 1: Choose major upholstery pieces that have some curve (= warm and inviting) but not too much decorative detail (= modern and fresh).
The and this does this in a perfect way.
Look at that . When I first saw it in the lookbook months ago, I said “You better place a very large order, including 2 for me.” I’ve long been a wingback fan for their comfort and classic vibe, heck they’ve been around for centuries, so I KNOW they are timeless, but this one is so beautifully updated and affordable. Those legs are delicate but shapely in a way that feels fresh and the scale is just right for an accent chair (sometimes wingbacks can be LARGE and feel like they’re eating a room).
The fabric is a soft gray linen (with a poly blend to make it more stain resistant), the piping looks so high-end and is done so well, and the legs give it a more midcentury feel which edges it up a bit. I want many places in my life now and will likely put it in my living room or my bedroom.
On to the . Here’s a hot trend that is going nowhere: a slimmer upholstered arm helps a sofa not feel too chunky but it’s still comfortable to lean against while allowing for more seating space. Also if you are , go for less seat and back cushions for a cleaner look (two vs. three for instance).
The furniture in this whole line is refined but casual and that soft swoop of the arm is understated and just so easy to layer (and lay) upon.
Step 2: Keep major pieces in classic, neutral tones for timelessness.
We all know this and it seems redundant, but neutrals are timeless because they don’t fall victim as easily to trend swings. That said, don’t be afraid to mix in some hits of color, like a green velvet easy chair, and throw in some family heirlooms to help elevate these neutral pieces and give them a different context. If your style is full of color, then don’t start layering beige on gray all over your house. If you’re all about that sapphire blue sofa, then, by all means, go for it, but it’s also not a bad idea if your color preferences change often (or you don’t have super strong leanings) to start with a major neutral piece and change out the accents frequently.
I personally think that muted, soft blues and greens can also be neutrals, along with whites, grays and taupes (and navys). Think about the French or Swedish blue-grays; those are always in style and aren’t beige. If this were my personal living room, I’d keep that chair (obviously) but do a more mid-tone sofa and a textured or striped rug because I like a bit more contrast between my pieces of furniture, but that is just my style preference. You can always feel confident that a neutral sofa will a good choice that you likely won’t get sick of for years and years.
Step #3: Edge it up.
This is a CRUCIAL step so you don’t fall into generic/boring territory. It is crucial now that you have your relatively “safe” foundational pieces that you bring in some black accents in a modern shape.
The next to the wingback is pretty amazing in its modern simplicity. Sure, it has a decorative turned base, but it’s so thin and that keeps it feeling “now.” (If you’re jumping out of your chair to buy this, just a little FYI that it’s not available until September 30, but we’ll update the link when it’s ready to be yours).
The isn’t new, but it is one of my favorites from Target. The black base is so simple and squared off while the top adds a lot of warmth. The repeats this thin black profile in other side tables, as well as those which I LOVE.
These are honestly some of the pieces that I’m most excited about this year and as we were unboxing the side tables and candlesticks, we were all very impressed. Perhaps some EHD unboxing videos are in order. If you don’t know what an unboxing video is, give it a Google, and let the oddness horrify you (and whatever you do, DO NOT let your kids see—I hear that kids can watch hours of other kids just opening up “presents” which seems rather odd).
We did a poll on Instagram between these two black side tables and it was literally 50/50 (well technically 51% to 49% but close enough).
Step #4: Ground it with nature.
The black edges up the neutral look, and the wood tones and natural elements take it back down. This contrast is crucial to keeping it feeling updated, not dated.
For the wood elements, we kept it more refined, and less rustic. My goodness, I feel like all I’ve said this year is rustic and refined. This (another piece that isn’t available until September 30) is GREAT especially for how inexpensive it is. It is heavy and substantial (Target refers to it as a coffee table) but I think depending on how much space you have to work with, it’s actually a perfect large-scale side table (or group a few for coffee table).
The in this pretty wood is also feeling very “Updated Classic” while leaning even a little contemporary. The ribbed texture of the wood gives it a more modern feel, but the lines are so clean and simple and in the warm wood it still works with our .
You can see in the above photo how the wood tones work so well together and really help warm up the room. (Yes, that is also part of the collection but wasn’t working in the living room so we threw it here and this is one of my favorite shots).
Certainly, the large (definitely outdoor) tree, plants, branches and wood tones (including that lovely and always popular lamp) show you how you can layer on natural elements to warm up a space and add character (even when everything is brand new). Target has a few terrariums and pots with some rather real-looking faux greenery and it’s my professional opinion that these are great to use if you buy higher end ones and of course keep the dust off of them.
Step #5: Add handmade elements through textiles, accessories and art.
This is also another contrast to the more modern black shapes. Sleek and hard + handmade and soft creates tension and keeps it feeling interesting and layered.
If your furniture is a simple linen like this, then layering on another texture is important to keep it feeling collected and warm. Here’s where you can bring in color (like that awesome and super squishy ) or edge it up with this in the above sofa. The knits are chunky and cozy and there are so many great plaids in the collection (perfect for my #ehdmountainfixer).
The art and pottery are always great at Target, we know this to be true, and this fall, there are so many pieces that feel really special, in a simple way.
The are so elegant and refined (and sorry that dresser is an antique + stop staring at that gorgeous custom door please). That is new, by the way, and had it been larger, we would have used it in the living room. It’s such a beautiful dark taupe and cream pattern.
The looks like you could have purchased it at Nickey Kehoe but it’s from Target (for $25). This shoot was only styled with samples so I haven’t even seen 1/10th of the pottery or lighting and I’m already so excited. I’ll use that little white over and over, and the is so modern and fresh. The whole collection of white pottery is just beautiful and so timeless. I could go on and on.
If you are wondering where this gorgeous location is, you’ll have to stay tuned to see how we are styling the rest of the house (it’s a friend of a friend’s who is an architect/set designer, so we are going to collaborate and shoot it for the blog). While we weren’t doing much in the kitchen, we took this beautiful shot below because we couldn’t help it.
That’s a ridiculously beautiful still-life. HUGE kudos to the photo/styling team (Sara, Brady and Emily B.) for creating this romantic fall moment. While the antique farm table is obviously not from Target, everything else is from the fall Target collection (most is from Threshold, with a couple Project62 mixed in).
So that’s my five-step process and one that I think is easy to follow. Remember, even if you are doing a rather traditional style like this one, keeping it eclectic will give it that updated and “now” context. The refined linen + curved arm + serious black side tables + organic wood shapes + oil paintings + chunky knits + faux leathers + handmade pottery all in a coordinating color palette = a timeless, updated classic look that is ALSO on trend.
While I love to mix in other styles and antiques or vintage to break up the newness and feel more like me, so many of these pieces could also work with any style because of their simplicity. If you like this look in its completeness and you are starting out and want to just go to one store to pull together a beautiful, affordable, comfortable, timeless, inviting, updated classic living room, Target’s fall Threshold collection is here for you. Here’s your epic Get the Look to bring this vibe home:
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Target also curated the majority of the pieces we used for the shoot on custom landing pages so you can see everything in one place. Check out each collected vignette here:
We didn’t stop there and, of course, Brian and I created a video for you to see this all in action before you head to the store (or click away to the site).
I realize that this is not everyone’s style. I think about how popular the Opalhouse makeovers were (refresher: we did two bedrooms in two different styles using that line, here and here) and this is so different, so I’d love to hear your thoughts and whether you think this “Updated Classic” look has as much longevity as I do. I personally think that wingback would work in almost anybody’s home, no matter what the style. Do you agree?
***This post is in partnership with Target, a brand who we support completely and love partnering with.
***Photography by Sara Tramp for EHD, art direction by me, styling by Brady and Emily B, and video by .