Although it may sound blasphemous for an interior decorator to not care too much about trends, it’s true. I’ve never been aware of “what’s cool” or “in.” Drake, men’s professional but outrageous socks, the “foodie” trend, the only reason I know about any of these things is because of my husband. Me? I like Frank Sinatra, pearls, and Cracker Barrel. And let’s just say that friends started calling me grandma at the young age of 10. But, what I love has always been around, and always will be. Frank Sinatra, pearl earrings, and Cracker Barrel’s catfish aren’t going anywhere! And thank goodness for that!
I feel the same way with interior decorating, choose classic. It will always be available, and it will always look great. Although it’s certainly necessary to have an idea of where the industry is going, what products are available, and what makes a room look “dated” and what doesn’t, in general, I say ignore trends. Typically, they’re more in your face, bold, and obvious. They don’t recede into the background and become a natural part of an environment. They yell, I’m trendy! Chevron, faux sheepskin, shag rugs, none of these items blend in. They look “trendy” which means they’ll look “out of trend” just as quickly. And often, they don’t even fit into an established style. Trying to fit a faux sheepskin ottoman into a modern, traditional, or shabby chic home isn’t easy for most home owners.
And what an expensive and time consuming habit! Even though trends start out at the top of the pricing chain and move all the way down to Target, collecting items that are trendy at any price point is expensive. Changing even just your accessories every 6 months to a year can become quite pricey. And that’s not even considering the price of updating a bath or kitchen that may be “trendy” now but “out of trend” in five years when you sell your house. You may have heard everyone talking about granite for some time and how trendy it was. Well, now the design industry says granite is on its way out and quartz is on its way in as its less heavily patterned and multi-colored.
And as you may know and can see at the top of the post, Pantone’s colors of 2016 are almost a baby pink and baby blue, and no one seems to like them, especially together. Last year, it was a color called marsala, basically a grayed down burgundy, and people lost their heads over how ugly it was. So why even worry about it? My advice on how to stay current? Look through magazines at least every six months, learn a thing or two about why design is moving in a certain direction, decide if you agree or not, and then ignore the clearly “trendy” designs and products.
So, for 2016, don’t worry about the trends. Know what you like, know how to put it together well, know how to make it personal, and buy pieces that coordinate but may not exactly be from the same era or style. Invest in pieces that you can pass down to your children’s children. And this doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune, it’s often drastically cheaper. I’ve never bought antique furniture because it’s out of my price range, but “used,” you bet! Every piece of wooden furniture in my house that I’ve bought is used. And you wouldn’t believe the prices for phenomenally beautiful, unique, and high quality furniture. Made in 1940 and still looks amazing and functions just as well, that’s what to look for. Can’t say that for trendy furniture.
So, go ahead and give your permission to not pay attention to what’s trendy. Instead, pay attention to classic. And that doesn’t even have to mean traditional. Modern, Belgian, even the wildly trendy Mid Century modern, all have the opportunity to be classic. So, the next time you’re in a store and looking at the shelves of trendy items, large sea urchin looking item on a stick in your hand like above, put it down, and run to the nearest consignment shop, local boutique, or antique mall and buy yourself something unique like a picture frame that has goose legs or a print of giant monkeys! That way, your items become interesting, unique, and personal, rather than 1 of 2 million sold.
I’d love to hear what you think about trends. So tell me in the comments below, trends, love them or leave them?