2021’s Hottest Houseplant Trend, According to a Pro Stylist
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2021’s Hottest Houseplant Trend, According to a Pro Stylist

Multicoloured. Antiplain. The buzziest indoor greenery is vividly variegated. Plus: How they work with your décor.

By Elizabeth Anne Hartman
Thu, Jun 10, 2021 1:48pmGrey Clock 3 min

BALTIMORE-BASED plant and interiors stylist Hilton Carter believes that even the most unfashionable plant can deeply gratify a doting minder. But Mr. Carter, whose eponymous collection of plant and garden accessories for Target launched in May, conceded that “variegated plants are having a moment.” Most are a blend of greens, creams and whites, he said, “and how that mixture comes together can be breathtaking.” At right, the author of the recently published “Wild Creations” (CICO Books) lists four patterned plants he sees trending, and the once-popular species they’re pushing off social media.

In the context of your décor, such splashy greenery pops but calls for a bit of extra consideration. Interior designer Kirsten Krason cautions against placing a striated Watermelon Peperomia next to a wall covered by, for example, Schumacher’s fruit-tree-filled Citrus Garden wallpaper. A busy plant against a hectic pattern gives your eye nowhere to rest, said Ms. Krason, co-owner of design firm House of Jade, in Riverton, Utah. Instead, play a more exhibitionist plant off neutrals like a ship-lapped wall or a linen drape. Layering pattern on pattern can work if you pay attention to scale, she said. “Pair a tiny-leafed plant with a large-patterned wallpaper or large-leafed tree with a smaller pattern.” And apply colour theory: “A very bright green next to a hot-pink pillow will electrify a room, while the same plant next to a dusky blue will tone down both the green of the plant and the vibe of the room.” Below, four flamboyantly patterned houseplants that are wooing early adopters.

IN: Calathea Orbifolia

The banded leaves of what Mr. Carter calls a designer plant resemble the lustrous sleeve of a Renaissance courtier, and they can grow to over a foot in width. Hailing from Bolivia, the species is happiest in high humidity and medium light, and can fill that naked corner with drama.

OUT: Stromanthe Triostar

Despite glamorous pink, red, white and green foliage, this plant is passe. Too many variations of the Stromanthe Triostar were made available in plant shops, noted Mr. Carter. “It just hasn’t appeared in as many homes in 2021 as in 2017 to 2019.”

IN: Watermelon Peperomia

This petite stunner’s fleshy leaves radiate silver from a centrally fixed stem, giving the variety its namesake pattern. Despite topping out at 12 inches, this easy-to-grow plant with contrasting red stems “has a presence among other plants in your collection,” said Mr. Carter.

OUT: Pilea Plant

The darling of millennial houseplant fans—second only to succulents—the Pilea hogged the limelight from 2016-2019, perhaps due to its easy propagation. Watermelon Peperomia shares this quality, so don’t clone too many or it could suffer the same fate.

IN: Marble Queen Pothos

Playfully mottled rather than elegantly striped, this variegated version trails like other Pothos, making it similarly ideal for hanging planters. Bonus: It thrives in medium light and can stoically weather neglect.

OUT: Golden Pothos

Appealing for all the easy-care reasons of the Marble Queen Pothos, “it’s one of those plants we’ve all seen in our grandparents’ homes, and just feels like a throwback,” Mr. Carter said.

IN: Birkin Philodendron

This native-Brazilian philodendron not only produces gracefully pointed leaves with feathery striations of lime green and white but also grows quickly—with bright indirect light and high humidity—and as large as 3 feet tall.

OUT: Monstera Deliciosa

Once coveted for its photogenic, exotically gapped leaves, the Monstera Deliciosa has become overexposed and mass-marketed. “And just like anything, the more available something is, the less it’s desired,” said Mr. Carter.

Reprinted by permission of The Wall Street Journal, Copyright 2021 Dow Jones & Company. Inc. All Rights Reserved Worldwide. Original date of publication: June 9, 2021.



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The personal wardrobe of the late fashion designer Vivienne Westwood, who is credited for introducing punk to fashion and further developing the style, is headed to auction in June.

Christie’s will hold the live sale in London on June 25, while some of the pieces will be available in an online auction from June 14-28, according to a news release from the auction house on Monday.

Andreas Kronthaler, Westwood’s husband and the creative director for her eponymous fashion company, selected the clothing, jewellery, and accessories for the sale, and the auction will benefit charitable organisations The Vivienne Foundation, Amnesty International, and Médecins Sans Frontières.

The more than 200 lots span four decades of Westwood’s fashion, dating to Autumn/Winter 1983-84, which was one of Westwood’s earliest collections. Titled “Witches,” the collection was inspired by witchcraft as well as Keith Haring’s “graphic code of magic symbols,” and the earliest piece being offered from it is a two-piece ensemble made of navy blue serge, according to the release.

“Vivienne Westwood’s sense of activism, art and style is embedded in each and every piece that she created,” said Adrian Hume-Sayer, the head of sale and director of Private & Iconic Collections at Christie’s.

A corset gown of taupe silk taffeta from “Dressed to Scale,” Autumn/Winter 1998-99, will also be included in the sale. The collection “referenced the fashions that were documented by the 18th century satirist James Gillray and were intended to attract as well as provoke thought and debate,” according to Christie’s.

Additionally, a dress with a blue and white striped blouse and a printed propaganda modesty panel and apron is a part of the wardrobe collection. The dress was a part of “Propaganda,” Autumn/Winter 2005-06, Westwood’s “most overtly political show” at the time. It referenced both her punk era and Aldous Huxley’s essay “Propaganda in a Democratic Society,” according to Christie’s.

The wardrobe collection will be publicly exhibited at Christie’s London from June 14-24.

“The pre-sale exhibition and auctions at Christie’s will celebrate her extraordinary vision with a selection of looks that mark significant moments not only in her career, but also in her personal life,” Hume-Sayer said. “This will be a unique opportunity for audiences to encounter both the public and the private world of the great Dame Vivienne Westwood and to raise funds for the causes in which she so ardently believed.”

Westwood died in December 2022 in London at the age of 81.

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