It has been proven lately that “old school” is returning to the design and décor space and we’ve been following closely with what has been trending. In a turn of events – and as a nod to our agency mission, “Do Things Differently” – we were excited to be greeted by a Forbes article titled, “Interior Designers Share the Worst Home Trends That Should Never Come Back in Style”. Below we discuss their thinking and in response, would love to know which you agree with and, even more so, which of those you don’t.
Note: This post may be a little more edgy than what we have published before. It is more like who we are at Draper DNA. We like to have fun, be a little snarky, and laugh. With that, you’ll see notes from agency founder, Shawn Draper italicized after each of the ten items shared from Forbes. I think sharing them with you is funny.
First up is the “Modern Farmhouse” style that author, Amanda Lauren cleverly attributes to the unfortunate, “Live, Laugh, Love” tchotchke trend from the early 90’s that made its way into too many homes, bumper sticker collages and lower-back tattoos. That said, this was perfectly articulated by designer, Audrey Scheck, with, “many designers agree that unless you live on an actual farm, it’s about time for modern farmhouse to be run over by a tractor.”
Hold on a second. I have visited many farmhouses in my life growing up in Minnesota and I can tell you there isn’t just one kind of farmhouse style. They can be old, new, ranch, two-story, traditional, Victorian, modern… actually, I have never seen a modern style farmhouse.
ALL WHITE EVERYTHING
As we’ve continued to share through our décor and design trend reporting, it remains clear that bright colors, unexpected details, over-the-top accents and accessories and exasperated character elements are where we’re heading at home. While we appreciate the clean and crisp “all-white-everything” concept it’s exciting to get to know others through how they express themselves in their living spaces.
Um, this one hits a little close to home. We built our forever dream home and it is white with black windows and doors with brown hardwood accent trim and floors. The idea is to create a background for colorful art that shows our personality and can change over time without a roller and bucket of paint.
In total transparency, we are having a hard time recalling the last time we saw a tiled kitchen countertop outside of an off-highway café so we would have to agree that this trend has been, and needs to remain, out. To brighten up and stylize a kitchen, countertops should remain clutter-free and clean while the kitchen’s focal points can exist in backsplashes, updated islands, a fresh coat of paint or an overhead air vent.
Whoever thought tile countertops were a good idea? Yuck! Just the idea brings out the inner germaphobe in me.
BULKY CORNER TUBS
We would consider changing this trends title to, “Las Vegas Bathtubs” because there’s just something a bit scandalous that comes to mind when you see or think about it. Free standing, or clawfoot tubs with longer and higher frames to fit not only an updated bathrooms style but also the homes tenants, are where it’s at. Add gold, brass, or chrome hardware for the attention, not a corner option.
This design trend has the potential to come back for ease of cleaning reasons. It can be a challenge to clean between the freestanding tub and the wall or window. I suspect if you look there is a washcloth or bar of soap that has fallen behind the tub.
FUZZY TOILET SEAT COVERS
Were these ever actually, “in style” or just something Bed, Bath and Beyond added to the list of “college dorm must-haves” for freshman year? Hard pass on this “trend” coming back in style. Unless you’re designing a “fun house” for a local carnival.
Whoa! I just got ripped back in time to my childhood when these were in vogue. There is no explanation for this idea. Now that I think of it, my great grandmother had a toilet seat with a drawing of a little boy peeing in a toilet on the back of the toilet seat. Hmmm.
The best point designers make here is that any room that houses cabinets should be simple, but accented with decorative hardware. Simply styling cupboard doors with a bright handle or a brass puller draws a much more handsome eye and attention to detail that’s often unexpected.
I like Shaker cabinetry and rather prefer it. This does make me wonder if Shaker communities still exist.
MATCHING FURNITURE SETS
To reiterate what we’ve been discovering and discussing recently, what is becoming more and more stylish and popular is unexpected bright colors, off-center artwork, over-the-top lighting schemes, patterned wallpaper and furniture that wouldn’t ordinarily be placed in the same room. We hope that stays on-trend because “matching” these days seems synonymous with “boring”.
I think boring is a little too polite. The fact is matching furniture sets are ugly. Let’s say it like it is. Architectural Digest is not featuring homes with matching furniture sets.
While we don’t see this as a trend that needs to necessarily leave, we do believe it’s one that should be, and is being, updated. This is where we find the uptick in backsplash and wallpaper trends. Be it in the kitchen, a bedroom, a bathroom or even a fireplace – a certain unexpected “accent” wall is an eye-turner we encourage.
My aunt had an accent hallway with family pictures hung from ceiling to floor. My dad regularly knocked several pictures off the wall every time we visited my aunt. It was hilarious.
As is expressed throughout this article, these finds and those we’ve currently written about, homeowners prefer a clean-looking kitchen so speckled brown and dark-colored countertops make the frequently used room look dated, regardless of how beautiful the rest of it may be. Forbes quotes an interior designer saying, “Kitchens benefit from a light touch that lets the focus remain on functionality, and this countertop material is just the opposite” which is spot on… pun intended.
Were there ever speckled tile countertops? If so, I want to see them. Better yet, I would love to talk with the person who looked and them said, “YES! This is exactly the look I was going for.”
Interior Designer Sarah Solis honestly says it best with, “Overlaid beds with multiple throw pillows and layers of blankets is a trend that is quickly going out of style. I love the thoughtful, minimal use of pillows on a bed beautifully draped for an elegantly effortless sanctuary. Lush textural materiality is much more interesting and sensual than a bed prohibited overly dressed.” And quite honestly, who doesn’t love less work with more comfort?
I have nothing here but complete agreement.
Are there other trends you think need to see their way out? We’d love to know. Shoot us a note at Shawn@DraperDNA.com. We may share your ideas and maybe our comments in a future post.
This commentary is my own based on years of experience and a slightly twisted sense of humor – Shawn Draper