Life in Portland Blog

Are You Embracing the Trending Pacific Northwest Style in Your PDX Home?


Does Your Home Show Trademarks of PNW Style? Read Our Guide and Find Out!

We all remember the southwest eclecticism that swept through many homes a couple years ago: homes on Instagram and home rental sites got bonus points for bold black and white patterns, pops of teal and yellow, and a strategically placed cactus.

While the nation’s obsession with southwest flair seems to have cooled, there’s a new trend on the rise: Pacific Northwest Style. The style is described as “laid-back, rustic, a bit Bohemian, and a touch classic,” and the PNW look tends to layer “plaid textiles, live-edge woods, warm colors, exposed brick, and midcentury pieces.”

It’s not just homes, either – hotel chains and boutique B&Bs are paying homage to Oregon and Washington’s costal and mountain vibes. Curious to see if your home follows this trend? Here are a few essentials that create a down-to-earth PNW style. If you can find more than a few of these elements in your home, then congratulations! Your home is decidedly cutting edge and on trend.

Splashes of Green

Even if you don’t live in the Pacific Northwest, you can bring the region’s surrounding nature inside by adding a touch of green to your home. If you’re looking for a quick way to jump on the PNW trend bandwagon, visit your local nursery and pick up a couple houseplants.

If you’re fully committed to the trend, give your kitchen an update and create a forest green tile backsplash — it’s almost like you’re cooking in the woods among evergreens, right?


Pendleton Blankets

The Portland based Pendleton Woolen Mills company epitomizes PNW style. The company’s current collection of National Park-inspired patterns are about as PNW trendy as you can get.

But if you really want to show off cool, casual woodsy vibes in your home, then you have to opt for a vintage Pendleton blanket (Midnight Sunlight in Portland has a great selection if you’re in the market for one of these beauties!).


Inspired by A-frame cabins at the base of Mt. Rainer or yurts in Oregon’s campgrounds, wood-paneled walls and tree-inspired furniture are core elements of Pacific Northwest style design.

Think coffee tables made from live-edge wood, or bedside tables made from tree stumps — these items are staples in many PNW style homes. While you might not have full wood-paneled walls like cabins you’ve seen in pictures, polished and rustic pieces go a long way toward creating a true PNW vibe.

Midcentury Elements

What pairs well with simple cabins and a return to nature? The clean lines of smart, midcentury design, that’s what! Pacific Northwest style draws heavily on midcentury modern trends, as both styles of homes typically feature Danish furniture, teak credenzas, and globe-shape lighting.

Simplicity of Design

The mantra of the Pacific Northwest lifestyle is to get out, and stay out. People in the PNW thrive on nature and community, as experienced in authentic and laid-back settings. So why not carry that into the home?

True to the lifestyle, Pacific Northwest style-homes veer away from ostentatious or showy pieces, and don’t tend to include anything too formal or precious. Spooky china and chandeliers need not apply!

An Open Layout

Pacific Northwest homes often feature open-plan layouts in an effort to create a laid-back, relaxing scene that makes guests and residents alike feel right at home. It’s less about creating a show of statement pieces, and more about creating a casual space that fosters community and shared experience. Does your living space flow seamlessly into the dining area, making the perfect set up for a weekend potluck? Very PNW.

What other PNW trends and styles have you noticed in homes? Let us know!

[image via: Pendleton]