Keeping up with home decor trends is hard. It seems like every time you turn around, something in your home is no longer the latest & best. Who has the money or time to change everything just because? On the other hand, holding on to dated decor for too long will make your home looked tired and has a definite impact on its value. So, as you’re setting goals for 2021, take a look around your home and see if there are any bygone trends that you can resolve in the New Year.
From large to small, here are a few of the worst offenders still lurking out there. Some are more involved fixes. But, some of them can be changed almost instantly for a fresh, more updated look.
Furniture Against the Walls
Ok… this is a pet peeve of ours and has been for years. Pushing your furniture up against the wall doesn’t always make a room look bigger. Angling furniture off the walls creates a more cozy atmosphere and can actually make a room look larger.
Heavy Fabrics and Tassels as Window Treatments
We don’t care how much you paid for your swags and tassels. Heavy, over-done window fashions are a no no! Removing swagged fabrics in favor of simple, vertical panels is an instant improvement. Swagged panels, bishop sleeves, and tassels as tie backs are also dead on arrival. Get rid of them!
Patterned Sofas or Loveseats
Pattern is always a welcome addition in a room, just not on your large seating pieces like sofas and loveseats. If you must have a pattern on furniture, use it sparingly (think accent chair). Nothing is more distracting and dated than a large pattern.
French Country or Farmhouse
Yea, we know, “But, Joanna Gaines said….”. STOP THE INSANITY! Unless you live on a farm, you don’t need farmhouse decor everywhere in your home. While up-cycled and shabby chic still have some appeal, using them sparingly is key. And for goodness sake, get rid of those roosters!
China & Curio Cabinets
Having a nice set of china and crystal might have been a status symbol which needed to be shown off and admired back in the day. (Not so much anymore!) With the decline in formal dining and dining rooms, china cabinets have gone the way of the Dodo. Curio cabinets are a close second.
Antiques & Collectibles
See Above! As much as you might hate it, all that money you “invested” in your Beanie Baby, Precious Moments or Lladro et al collections hasn’t quite panned out. Visual clutter is out and that includes large collections of bric-a-brac! Consider using just a couple of your favs as accessories and rotate them out.
A staple of DIY home improvers, the dreaded tile countertop is OUT! Solid surface countertops are a must-have for the majority of home buyers. Do yourself a favor. Save your pennies and upgrade your countertops if you still have tiled ones.
Ah…. those dainty, darling doilies! Burn them!
Sadly, matchy-matchy continues to make the list of once-was decorating trends. Repeating colors, patterns and textures judiciously helps create continuity and flow between spaces. But perfectly matched colors and patterns in rooms looks dated and contrived. Let your creativity shine and embrace the perfection in mismatched decor.
Toilet Rugs and Covers
Ah… the infamous “piddle pad”. Whoever thought putting a bib on their toilet was a good idea should have their head examined. Along those lines… toilet cozies? Really? For the love of all that’s good and right in the world, lose those nasty funk traps!
It should go without saying that popcorn ceilings are OUT! And they have been out for years. This one isn’t an easy fix. You really need to have them removed and replaced with new drywall. But this improvement is an investment that will benefit, not only the look, but value of your home.
Ok… teacups aren’t the only offenders. Hanging pots & pans, hanging baskets, hanging utensils and just about anything else that hangs from your kitchen cabinets or ceilings is OUT! If you’re picking up on a theme here, good for you. Less is More! Visual clutter is out. Clean and simple is in!
Santa might disagree. But sleigh beds aren’t the rage like they once were. Can’t afford to replace your entire bedroom set? Consider ditching the bed and replacing that big, bulky frame with a simple upholstered headboard.
Old Fashioned Fixtures
Fixtures are the jewelry in your home. Light fixtures, faucets, cabinet hardware, door knobs & hinges might seem like small details. And that’s exactly what they are. Keeping them up-to-date a little at a time will pay in the long run (especially when you go to sell) and you won’t have to bite the bullet to replace everything all at once.
You know how to pickle, good for you! But, chances are you just bought a jar of colorful, pickled goodies for a pop of color on the kitchen counter. Pitch it!
Excessively Formal Living Rooms
If formal dining is out, it stands to reason that formal living is too. New, open concept construction has removed formal living spaces from the equation. But we still have a lot of homes out there built with the traditional living room/ family room combo. Reimagine your formal living room with more casual furnishings arranged formally. The room will feel more inviting and might actually get used for a change.
We’ve said it before, we’ll say it again. No one loves your family more than you do. Decorate accordingly. And while it’s ok to be proud of your family, decorating with nothing but family photos is a decorating crutch for those who aren’t willing to commit to actual artwork. Plus it comes off just a little narcissistic! You don’t have to buy gallery quality artwork. There are plenty of low-cost options out there to use. And since they won’t cost a fortune, you won’t feel like you have to be buried with them.
Fake Plants Especially Above Kitchen Cabinets
Ok…. so we’ll buck the trend here a little. Yes, live plants might be ideal. But, with our ever-busy lives, real plants can be dead ones quickly without proper care. If you don’t have a green thumb, it’s still ok to use fake ones. Invest in the best looking ones you can and use them sparingly. And if you have a jungle of dusty fake greens above your kitchen cabinets, you have our permission to prune those hedges too.
Oak Cabinets & Floors
If your home was built in the 80’s & 90’s, you probably have oak in abundance! Oak is fine. But golden oak is NOT. Since oak has a tendency to yellow over time, the finish becomes more and more “orange”. If you can’t afford to replace the oak, consider having it refinished with a slightly darker, more brown stain for an instant face-lift. Products like gel stains are available for you DIY types. And paint works. Just keep in mind the oak grain will show through.
Staying on top of decorating trends is a never ending battle. While it might be easier just to throw up your hands, updating a little every year will help keep your home looking fresh, up-to-date and on trend. Your home is never “done”. It and its decor are constantly evolving. So as you begin a new year and a new decade, resolve to change the things you can and step boldly forward. You can do it!