Some interior design trends never seem to die. Or do they? There are very specific looks and trends that are often associated with a particular era. For example, thanks to the popularity of Chip and Joanna Gaines, there is nothing more definitive of the last decade than modern farmhouse style. On the other hand, there’s nothing more 1970s than tile countertops and shag carpeting.
While many people say that fashion and design trends always end up coming back in style, that doesn’t necessarily mean they should. After all, things change for a reason. Here are twelve trends interior designers hope never come back.
It’s time to retire that “Live, Laugh, Love,” sign. 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. “We’ve seen much less of the farmhouse trend in recent years, and I am hopeful that it’s on its way out,” says interior designer Audrey Scheck. “While I appreciate vintage pieces with natural age and character, the overly distressed decor is definitely fading away. Instead, focus on creating a more authentic look that isn’t intentionally manipulated to appear aged.”
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Much to the delight of cleaning product and bleach manufacturers, the all-white look was in style for a very long time. While it’s certainly pretty, it can become boring quite quickly. White is also high maintenance and incredibly challenging to maintain, especially for homes with children and pets. “As people venture into furnishing and decorating with more vibrant colors and bold patterns, I hope that the trend of keeping everything white continues to take a back seat,” says Scheck. “While white certainly feels open and clean, I love incorporating saturated colors to infuse character into spaces.”
There isn’t one designer, architect, or builder currently using tiled countertops in new homes. While many people have maintained their tile countertops in vintage-style kitchens, this look is generally found in older kitchens that are in desperate need of renovation. But most people aren’t fans of this look. “Although tiled countertops were popular in the 70s and ’80s, I am hopeful that the realization that the grout lines are impossible to keep clean keeps this trend from ever coming back,” remarks Scheck.
Bulky Corner Tubs
A large tub shoved in a corner does not turn a bathroom into a sanctuary. This placement makes bathrooms feel closed in and less attractive. Sheck tells me, “We see them all the time and love it when our clients want to swap them for a freestanding tub. Removing clunky corner tubs helps free up so much usable square footage in the bathroom, and it also makes the room appear to be much larger.”
Fuzzy Toilet Seat Covers
When it comes to bathroom decor, taking the “less is more” approach is always a good way to go. There’s nothing positive to say about a fuzzy toilet seat cover. “The fact that these were ever popular is mind-blowing! I am all for comfortable seating, but an upholstered seat cover on a toilet should never be the answer. Let’s hope this one doesn’t make a comeback any time soon,” says Scheck.
Interior designer Kate Lester is sick of seeing Shaker-style cabinetry, which has has been incredibly popular in recent years. “As we always say at our office, ‘we can do better!’ I think and hope this is the year more creative cabinetry styles will go mainstream. If you are going for a more contemporary look I always suggest something a little different, like a vertical paneled door detail or a flat panel style with a really unique piece of hardware,” she says.
Matching Furniture Sets
Frankly, most people should avoid shopping at furniture stores that sell living room sets with a matching sofa, love seat, and chair along with a coordinating coffee and side table, that are probably thrown in for free. Interior designer Gillian Segal tells me, “I cringe when I see people that have obviously bought a complete matching furniture set of something from the same collection or vendor. Matching is out. It is way less interesting than using different sources and mix-matching your pieces.”
Accent walls aren’t necessarily over, but their popularity is starting to wane. Davina Ogilvie, founder of Wovn Home, a start-up that makes custom window treatments tells me, “Accent walls were considered to make a space look more interesting, but they can look jarring or childish. At their worst, they seem to reflect a lack of decisiveness or courage about making paint and wallpaper choices throughout a room. I’m ready for this trend to be behind us, with walls that feel cohesive and intentional, without the sudden contrast of an accent wall.”
While it might be too early to say if the marble countertop trend will last another decade, it is safe to declare that speckled countertops are unlikely to fall back into favor. “One trend that I’d be happy to never see return is brown-speckled granite countertops,” says interior designer Kevin Francis O’Gara. “Not only does this look perpetually dirty, but unlike darker colors it just makes kitchens look drab! Kitchens benefit from a light touch that lets the focus remain on functionality, and this countertop material is just the opposite.”
Flush Mount Lighting
Tear-shaped flush mount lights, sometimes called “boob lights” because of their likeness to the female figure, were a standard part of most homes for many years. Fortunately, pendant lights and chandeliers have replaced these extremely boring and incredibly unsophisticated fixtures. “A trend that I’d be happy to see never come back in style are boob lights,” says O’Gara. “There’s literally no need for these unfortunate lights with all the [more interesting] flush mount options out there!”
Wall To Wall Carpeting
Wall-to-wall carpeting throughout a home has no advantages other than generally being the least expensive flooring option available. But it often looks dated and cheap, while being hard to maintain and terrible for allergy sufferers. Never mind what happens if a pet has an accident or someone spills a glass of red wine.
Most homeowners don’t go for this style anymore. However, it is still used in hospitality design, according to Nancy Epstein, founder and chairman of the board at Artistic Tile. “As a frequent traveler, I am appalled to walk into a hotel room with carpeting in it and wonder whose dirty feet were on that carpet last.”
Making the bed is enough work and interior designer Sarah Solis doesn’t believe in overdoing it. “Overlayed 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,” she says.