Should We Follow Interior Design Trends?

 

Should we follow trend in interior design?

 

I’ve been thinking about interiors trends lot recently. Mainly because I just finished putting up a new gallery wall last week only to read a blog post a few days later saying that gallery walls are ‘out’. Brilliant. I couldn’t help feeling like a bit of a looser for a split second, but then I looked at my awesome gallery wall ft. remixed print of Girl With Pearl Earring, a hand embroidered piece by my best friend, an original screen print by the amazing Daisy Billowes, my framed archaeological specimens from Pompeii, a woven textile piece from the Navajo Reservation, my fave Billy Bragg LP cover… and I thought “actually, I think gallery walls are still cool.

It’s a funny one. I think it’s only human nature to be drawn to trends somewhat. If you managed to get through the last three years without falling for millennial pink, banana leaf print, or brass fixtures, you’ve done pretty well. As much as I hate to admit it, I think we’re all programmed to want to ‘fit in’, and staying on trend is just another way of doing that. But whenever I get that impulse (like doubting my gallery wall!) I try to push it aside as much as I can. When I think about the people that have really influenced me in terms of design & style – people like Ilse Crawford, Vivienne Westwood, Bjarke Ingels, Iris Apfel, Abigail Ahern, (… Jane Plough from Toast of London haha) – they are people who have made a huge imprint on the design world because of the way that they went against the grain. All the coolest people I know have a really distinct personal style that doesn’t bend and change with trends because it doesn’t need to. That’s what I strive for. As the incredible Bunny Williams said:

If you love something, it will work. That’s the only real rule.

Image: Essential Home

I think she’s right. That’s not to say that it isn’t easy to get swept up into trends – we see them everywhere in interiors – magazines, Pinterest, Instagram… I feel like my days are saturated with photos of gorgeous interiors, and I love that for the most part; it’s how we get inspiration. But when you see the same trends (let’s say copper, for example) pervading these images over and over again it’s easy to become confused about whether you like it because you actually like it, or if you just want it because it’s fashionable. I can’t be the only one who scrolls through Pinterest and one week is obsessed with scandi minimal interiors, the next industrial, then falls in love with 70s design… The fact is, there are lots of ways to design a home that look great, but just because you like the look of something, that doesn’t mean it’s your style or right for you. As much as I like looking at pictures of clean, minimal scandi interiors with lots of white space, it just wouldn’t work for me – I love colour, and I collect antiques like a crazy woman – where would all my treasures go?! My spacial awareness is also seriously below par which results in things being spilt and stained far too often… A white minimal interior just wouldn’t be practical for me. I’m sure it’s the same with you guys. Being strict with yourself about adhering to a style at the expense of incorporating things you like into your interiors like colours or sentimental possessions just isn’t the right way to go in my book. I always think that the most interesting interiors are the ones that are full of personality, rather than picture-perfect.

I also think that decorating your space rigidly in line with one trend is the easiest way to make it look dated. Just think about 70s avocado bathrooms or people that went HAM with shabby chic – clinging on to a trend too much just ages your decor when, by nature, the trend passes and isn’t current anymore.

Image: DelightFULL

All this said, trends only really become trends because lots of people like them, right? It’s hard not to get involved. I do genuinely love millennial pink. Pink has always been my favourite colour. When I was 13, I wanted my whole bedroom to pink. Like, everything. We painted all the furniture, the radiator, the curtain pole… It was a sight to behold. And I’m pretty sure I’ll keep loving millennial pink it when it’s ‘out’. (Is that now…?(!)) So how do we go about implementing trends?

I think the best way to work with trends in decor is to let yourself like the trends you like, but incorporate them in little touches. You can salute the trends you like in decorative items  that can be changed easily and are less expensive. For example, if you love banana leaf print, instead of wallpapering a feature wall in your lounge, buy a print to hang. Elements like art, mirrors, lighting, and accessorises are much easier and more affordable to change around than furniture and wall colours.

Industrial / scandi interior: Should we follow trends?

So how do you know if you’re a trend-addict?

Like I’ve said, I think it’s fine to indulge in trends through decorative touches when something really calls out to you, but don’t get sucked into redecorating completely around trends – be true to your own style! You may be focusing too much on interior trends if you find yourself…

Wanting to completely change the style of your home often

Even when nothing major needs doing. e.g. itching to replace all your rose gold fixtures with brass ones, paint all your walls pink and ditch your current furniture for midcentury modern pieces.

Feeling self-conscious about your home

I think (though I’m loathe to admit it) that’s it’s only human nature to want to impress people. I like to think that I’m pretty confident in my own taste and don’t give a shite what anyone thinks about it, but in reality, if no-one liked what I was doing, I’d feel pretty crap. With this in mind I guess it’s natural to feel a little self-conscious of your style sometimes –  especially if it’s very bold – but 95% of the time, you should be proud of your home. If you find yourself constantly worrying about what your friends and guests think of you home, it might be because you’re focusing on fashion instead of being authentic to your own style. I have a glass head and a print of Portrait of a Young Girl that literally no-one that comes into my house likes, but I fcking love them so they stay 😉 If you want some tips about finding your interior style, check out this post.

Feeling envious of homes that look more modern than yours

Again, a certain amount of healthy competition is only human! But if you’re feeling more jealous than inspired by other people’s spaces, especially really trendy ones, it might be coming from a sense of wanting to keep up with the Jones’ rather than because you actually like the style.

If you think you’re relying on trends to inform your decor and struggling to find your style, check out this post!

It can take a really long time and a lot of trial and error before you really discover your own taste. and it will continue to evolve over time. The journey is half the fun!

What do you guys think about designing around trends? Very interested to hear some other opinions!

Rx

 

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18 Comments

  1. This is a tough one – sometimes I find I’m a sucker for interior design trends and go out and buy the latest fad. But I do find with trends that I fall out of love with the pieces quickly and seem to sell them or throw them away. Think the best thing to do is, when you see something you like, think about it for a few weeks. If you’re still in love with it after some time has passed it’s the right item for you. that way you give yourself some time to think about it, or stumble across any other item that might actually work better for you.

    1. rosannaalicia

      That’s a great idea – I always do it with clothes/shoes but for some reason not homeware… Yeah I’m the same with faddy things; just this Saturday I was in my local TKMaxx and they had a big gold pineapple trinket pot reduced to £6 which I immediately put in my basket, but I ended up putting it back because I don’t think I really liked it! I feel like I love and hate popular things at the same time. x

  2. I love seeing new trends, just because I love seeing new ideas. However, I’m not a slave to them in any way. I definitely have my own decor style and love to decorate with the things around me by upcycling and recycling. I love to see decor that reflects the owner’s personality and tastes and not just trend driven.

    1. rosannaalicia

      Definitely agree Claire, I love to see someone’s personality in their home. But you’re so right – trends do expose lots of new design so I guess that’s a good thing & worth investing in a good piece! x

  3. Definitely not one to go after trends but agree that it’s hard not to get caught up with what’s readily available in the shops. M whole blog is all about helping people discover their own style and going for that as then they’re going to love their rooms for longer and feel more at home in them. You get bored with trends after a while. However I’ve always loved the tropical vibe so will probably jump on the bandwagon with that one! Unfortunately I don’t think trends often reflects current culture (maybe sometimes) so I don’t really trust their authenticity. Nice post, thanks for sharing x

    1. rosannaalicia

      I’m the same Donna, I think staying true to your personal taste always makes for much more interesting interiors. I think following trends can actually really confuse people from finding their own style! x

  4. I had the same moment about the gallery wall.. I don’t follow trends whether it is fashion or home design.. I think it is important to be authentic and stay true to yourself.. We only have things we love in our home, not what someone tells us that we should have this season or next. Trends are great for inspiration but I think you have to put your own stamp on it!

    1. rosannaalicia

      Haha I love the good old gallery wall!! I completely agree – glad that most of us seem to feel the same way. I can’t help drooling over really trendy interiors on Pinterest or in mags but I just think it’s so unsustainable at the end of the day. You’d have to completely redecorate every 6 months! x

  5. This is very interesting to read. So, where do I start? I don’t think I am a trends addict (ta-da!) but it’s not my fault they make so many nice things all the time and I want to have all of them at home.. Like Swoon Editions. The moment you are ready to choose one of their fab tables, out they bring a new, more gorgeous one and you think, MAN….. :S

    I agree that you should not be sucked into trends, rather get the best out of trends that works with your own signature style.

  6. I totally agree about trends and what I really want to see more of is classic contemporary design, but with a slight nod to the trend! In fact I was just talking to a fellow interiors blogger as we are both wanting to revamp our office spaces and we were in a quandary over what to do in these space because the ‘trendy interiors’ feels a bit done now and everywhere! Lets get back to make our homes what we love, not what IG is telling us what we should love!

    1. rosannaalicia

      Completely agree Jade, I’d love to see more furniture and interiors that can stand the test of time. E.g. as much as I love Swoon Edition’s Ziggy cabinet (and wanted one for a long time) I just can’t see it enduring… Looking forward to seeing how your office redesign unfolds! x

  7. The best looking interiors are never trend driven but built with layers of quality furnishings collected with love. I don’t think there is anything wrong with trends in themselves but more the way that access to media and cheap production has trends turning over so quickly that consuming to keep up with them is unsustainable.

    1. rosannaalicia

      That’s a really interesting point Fiona, I agree. Just like ‘fast fashion’ I think fast trends in interiors aren’t just unsustainable in that they’re false economy, but also because they are so wasteful… If I had upgraded my fixtures and metal furniture in line with trends every time fashion changed over the last few years it would have cost a fortune! First rose gold, then copper, then brass, now gold… x

  8. Such an interesting topic! I think social media can definitely have a strong influence over peoples design choices and how often they change them. I’d love to see people design with colours and schemes that they genuinely love as opposed to what’s ‘on trend’. I feel the only arena within home décor that can withstand trends is accessories and styling pieces. I must admit, I started my blog when rose gold and copper were all the rage, but I’ve forever loved gold and brass finishes. I’m staying true to my heart with my Gold Vibes Only 🙂 Great blog post x

    1. rosannaalicia

      Thanks so much Annie! I completely agree – when you keep seeing the same looks over & over on Pinterest and Instagram it’s hard not to get sucked in. (Absolutely love your blog btw!) xx

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