7 Ghosts of Design Trends Past

Homes built on ancient burial grounds or with a more recent sorted past can leave anyone with an obvious feeling of dread and discomfort. But what if there is a less nefarious explanation for that skin-crawling vibe that you can’t quite put your finger on? Once you’ve had the exorcism, thrown out all the creepy dolls, and double-checked for hidden secrets, and you still can’t shake that haunting sensation, it might be time to acknowledge that your ghosts are less than supernatural, but actually a result of horrid and dated design.

Forget avocado green kitchens and ugly wallpaper—those monsters have been gone so long that they’re nearly welcome back in their reincarnated and modernized forms. However, there is always the next generation of Big Bads that are ready to step in and scare your home right out of style again. Below we’ve compiled a list of the more recent offenders to move into your neighborhood and wreak havoc on all that is lovely and contemporary.

Tuscan Inspired Kitchens

How could there be anything inherently spooky about a Tuscan inspired kitchen? Warm and welcoming earth tones, rustic elements, and distressed finishes all come together beautifully to create an Old World type of elegance. But as much as it pains us to accept this—these kitchens ARE old, and not in the way that was originally intended. Kitchen trends have moved away from antiquity and adornment and are now all about incorporating cool, bold, and neutral hues, geometric details, and simplistic design.

Still not ready to let go of some of these elements in your kitchen? Is it the natural textures from the wood, stone, and metal? The scenic inspired colors? Or maybe it’s the relaxed and well-loved vibe that you dig so much? Either way, you don’t necessarily have to say goodbye to these characteristics. Many aspects of these countryside inspired kitchens can be reimagined and reworked into your new design.

50 Shades of “Greige”

In Everytown, U.S.A., you can see countless homes that are painted in various shades of beige, or utilize materials that are naturally some variation of the color (or lack thereof.) Once it was decided that was out, then came gray. Every single shade of it, everywhere.  Don’t get us wrong, it makes total sense to give your home a neutral backdrop, inside and out, however, when greige is overdone and left without any accent colors, Everytown is left lifeless and dull.

Even if you’re not someone with the most chromatic taste, there are still subtle ways to incorporate a bit more visual interest into your home’s design. Black is super popular right now and seems to never truly go out of style. It’s a great choice if you want a bit of drama without being too specific. You could simply jazz up the interior and exterior of your home with an abundance of plants for an ever-changing pop, or if you’re really feeling adventurous, try painting your front door a fun and fearless color.

Bad Lighting

Call us crazy, but instead of being afraid of the dark, we’re more terrified of bad lighting. We’ve all experienced the pain and torture of icky lighting, and yet it’s still one of the most overlooked components of great design. Light fixtures not only serve a fundamental purpose but are also the crowning jewels of any beautiful space. Just as a good necklace makes the dress, brilliant lighting makes the room.

But don’t let that overwhelm you. Upgrading your fixtures doesn’t have to be scary or costly. From starburst chandeliers to Art Deco-inspired sconces, there are some fantastic styles trending right now and something to suit every taste. Fixtures are getting bigger, metals are being mixed, and minimalism still reigns supreme. It’s time to get rid of the stained glass lamps, track lighting, and dare I say, even the exposed Edison Bulbs, but do it soon so no one has to suffer any longer.

Extreme Walls

Do you have walls in your home that scream “Look at me?!” Tacky wallpaper borders, faux wood paneling, and glass block have long been known to significantly date a home, but what about the more recent creeps? We know how excited you were to finally pick out that perfect color for the accent wall in your dining room, or when the reclaimed barn wood came together just right to make an awesome backdrop for your flatscreen TV, but as much as it pains us to be the ones to tell you this…these feature walls are no longer shining—they’re shouting.

Today, your walls aren’t looking to be seen but felt. Millwork and wainscotting are the way to go if you’re looking to create some visual interest in your space, and we can probably thank shiplap for paving the way for these design elements to reemerge. Even wallpaper has made a comeback in a big way and the options are nearly limitless. From florals to geometrics, botanicals, and metallics, there is no excuse for leaving your walls untouched, especially when there are previous atrocities to be undone.

Don’t Look Up!

We’re all familiar with the monstrosity lurking above that is the popcorn ceiling, but what about all the other variations of ugly, textured overheads? And while we know that it can be costly to undo the stamps and orange peels that swirl aloft, the time has finally come for them to be stopped. The ceiling is most often overlooked in design, and for an understandable reason, because we’re not usually staring up, but 2018 has been begging the question: Are we missing a huge opportunity by neglecting the space above?

This is the year that ceilings are demanding to be noticed and we’re most certainly paying attention now. With an over 300% increase in saved pins on Pinterest, Statement ceilings are one trend that is in it to win it, as they say. The sky is almost literally the limit with everything from wallpaper and wooden slats, to bright paint colors and architectural detailing such as beams and intricate moldings. Just know that your ceiling isn’t really evil, it just needs a second chance, is all.



Monstrous Bathtubs

Ever notice how most monsters are often described as ‘big and scary’? Well, that’s how folks are starting to feel about the oversized baths of the not-so-distant past. They’re chunky, obnoxious, and quite frankly, just trying way too hard. Not only do they take up an abundance of square footage, they’re now seen as impractical and inefficient. Over the last decade, a lot more emphasis has been placed on creating larger and more functional showers because of water conservation and their frequency of use.

But bathtubs aren’t going anywhere. In fact, they’re more conspicuous than, arguably, ever before. Where and how we soak has become an expression of art, a centerpiece as opposed to an object of revulsion. Freestanding bathtubs are all the rage today and are far sleeker than the monstrous versions of yesteryear. And with a wide array of unique materials to choose from, there’s a style to suit every taste and budget.

Awful Awnings

This one seems like a given, but alas, there are still homes out there with these grotesque tarps cloaking the windows and doors. It’s not that awnings don’t serve a purpose, but utilizing the wrong material and design and they’ll also serve as your curb appeal’s undoing. Originally, metal and fabric awnings were seen to add character and dimension to a home’s exterior, as well as to help cool the interior from the hot sun, but now they loiter as a constant reminder that a home is severely outdated.

But what if we told you that you can still have all the character and shade you desire, but without the ick factor? Even awnings have undergone outstanding transformations since the height of their popularity in the 1950’s, and the options available today are nothing short of awe-inspiring. (See what we did there?) Updating this element of your home’s exterior is as cost-effective as it is necessary for your overall peace of mind.

We did it. We made it through to the end of this terrifying tale of excellent design gone bad. Despite the best of intentions, these trends have seen the last of their time in the limelight and have now withdrawn to the shadows to remain until their inevitable resurrection someday. But that doesn’t mean that you have to stay in the darkness too. If you’re being haunted by ghosts from design trends past, who ya gonna call?

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