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Goodbye 2020 - A Look Ahead

Think of what life was like for you a year ago. The economy was growing, unemployment was down and maybe your business had a record year. It seemed that 2020 would be a banner year for most of us.

Never could anyone image how the world would be brought to its knees from a global pandemic. By now most of us know someone who became ill or lost a loved one to COVID. It is still hard to imagine that this virus has taken over 1.7 million lives world-wide.

If COVID taught us anything – it taught us all to slow down, reflect and appreciate what we have. It taught us to make do with less. We became more mindful of our consumption, as products became scarce and our livelihoods took a nosedive. It taught us to try new things for our personal well-being and our businesses. In order to survive, we were forced to pivot our businesses and think outside the box. Idle time spent at home allowed us to invest in self-improvement - from Zoom fitness classes to learning new languages.

It taught us to appreciate precious time with friends and family. It became a rarity to share a meal, celebrate a birthday, see a movie, go to a museum, hear a concert or attend a wedding together. We couldn't even properly say goodbye to loved ones we lost. COVID taught us to connect with everyone digitally, rather than in-person. Everyday hugs and kisses we took for granted, were replaced by “air” hugs and elbow bumps. It taught us to stay connected by being apart. Routine doctor visits became virtual conferences. Our kids and grandkids got Chromebooks and attended school through their computers. Offices closed and we met with colleagues through Zoom. We dodged people in the grocery store, stood 6 feet apart in public places, doused our hands with sanitizers and learned to make a fashion statement by wearing a mask. Life as we knew it was postponed or cancelled.

As 2020 comes to an end and we look toward 2021, we are reminded of the lessons from the pandemic. It’s not surprising that some of the floral trends we will see in 2021, reflect the sign of the times. Some changes 2021 will bring include:

Color Trends - According to The Pantone Color Institute, gray and yellow are the new colors for 2021. Designed to convey a message of strength (gray) and hope (yellow), these colors will be expressed in many facets of our lives – fashion, interior design, art, architecture, and flowers.

Happy Home – For many people, home became an office and a classroom. There was a resurgence in home improvement and DIY projects, now that families were spending more time at home. Consumers are expected to gravitate more toward having fresh flowers and plants in their homes. There’s a trend toward happy colorful flowers, as well as ones that evoke serenity - calming whites and pastels.

Simple Life – People are tending to simplify their homes and organize their space to accommodate their changing lifestyles. People are seeking to live more efficiently and with less stuff. With many companies opting to have employees work from home, there is an exodus of folks moving from cities to rural areas. Modern and Ikebana designs are seeing a comeback, which reflects a mood of simplicity. There is an increased demand for plants, especially orchids. According to Floral Daily, growers cannot keep up with demand and orchids have not been this popular since the 1940’s, when they were used for dances, operas and weddings.

Sustainability – Consumers, especially millennials, are insisting companies protect the environment by using recyclable packaging and sourcing food and plant material from local farms. Demand for locally grown flowers will continue to surge, as well as handmade products.

Dried and faux trend – Dried and faux (silk) flowers are making a comeback and will continue to be used in home décor and for wedding work. The Silk Stem Collective, a rent-and-return faux flower business, is one of the few companies profiting from COVID. They have built a whole business around renting silks for micro weddings.

Micro Celebrations – While large weddings and events may be on hold through mid-summer - micro weddings, with fewer than 25 guests, are continuing to be the trend until larger celebrations are allowed.

2020 has forced us all to live our lives differently. With the new year upon us, there is always the hope for better days ahead.

Wishing you a happy, prosperous and peaceful 2021.

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