Looking Back: The Decade in Design

Now that we are officially in 2010, I thought it would be fun to look back at the past decade and see what was happening in the design world that might be worthy of talking about.  I was reading a few articles about this subject and it really caught my eye and attention and I knew it would be something all of you would be interested in too.

This blog post, by Things That Inspire, really got me thinking about the subject of what is going to look trendy in the first decade of the 2000’s.  Those things that we loved and many of us included  in our homes, but looking back, are they going to stand the test of time?  Things that are trendy are bound to eventually lose their luster, as we all know.  That blog post has a lot of good comments and discussion too, so you might want to check it out when you have a minute.  I’m not going to cover everything she did in that post, but will mention several of them, along with some of my own observations.  She mentioned and linked to a discussion on Gardenweb’s Decorating board, which I also used to frequent before blogging.  I am GeorgiaGal over there, for any who have been on that board for a few years.   I hardly ever get by there these days, but there have always been some lively design topics and discussions going on.

I’ve lived long enough to see so many trends come and go with decorating and design.  My first memories of what was in style with home decor was probably in the late 60’s, early 70’s and we all know what the 70’s were like.  Oh my gosh, shag carpet everywhere,  fake leather, not to mention all those colors of burnt orange, avocado green, and harvest gold.  To me, the 70’s have been the absolute worst in design.  Ever!   I mean, look back at the old movies from the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s and see how classic and stylish many of  the homes were back then.  Then, we get to the 70’s and all I think of is Brady Bunch.  Now, that house was definitely not the epitome of style, don’t you agree?  For a really hilarious look back at the 70’s, take a look at this post from James Lileks about a Better Homes and Gardens book, 70’s style.  It’s priceless and his commentary is just a hoot.  Here is one pic from that BH&G book back then.  Anyone ready for this again?  🙂  Nope, me neither. 1

We have all evolved, myself included in the last 25 years of decorating and design styles.  I like to think I’ve matured and learned a lot in that time, but truthfully, I’ve fallen for many trends over the years.  I know I’ve learned a few things, when I look back at where I used to be and where I am today (I cringe at some of my old house pics.  Classic, not so much).

I went through the seafoam and mauve stage, the hunter green and burgandy phase, and fell for the dark and moody colors, like the red dining room I just covered over earlier last year.    Not that there is anything wrong with red dining rooms, I loved that color for several years, I was just craving something lighter.  I think I could just paint my whole house antique white now and be quite happy in it, by adding color in fabrics and accessories.  Classic and traditional furniture is also tops on my list too and that has been something I’ve learned over the years.

Here’s one example of how I learned this trendy lesson the hard way.  This is my old kitchen in Georgia.  The house that I built (with my Dad’s help) and I HAD to have these Euro-style cabinets that were all the rage in the mid-80’s.  You’ve seen these things all over, there are relics of them still out there.  I did get to redo that kitchen before I left and you can see that makeover here, but this goes to show that trends definitely are a huge thing and we all have to be aware of them. If you are stuck with cabinets like this, then all I can say is “bless your heart”. Before

Hanging out online with other design blogs and decorating sites has definitely honed my taste and my eye so much over the last few years and I’m really grateful for that.  Thank goodness for growth!

So, getting back to the last decade.  What are some things that you see from this decade that may or may not have staying power?  Here are some things that I have seen mentioned and I wanted to throw them all out at you too.  This will make for some lively and entertaining discussions, I’m quite sure.  Many of these trends are seen in kitchens and baths, since that seems to be where more money is spent in new homes.


(from Moen)

Oil Rubbed Bronze – This trend was mentioned as being too trendy and going the way of brass.  Now me, I love this look especially in lighting and hardware.  I still haven’t changed  out everything brass in my house and probably won’t (i.e. my brass shower surround isn’t going anywhere).  But, will oil-rubbed bronze stay around as a classic? I have no idea, but I’d like to think it might.granite-indianapolis_granite_kitchen

(from Granite Indianpolis)

This is a gorgeous kitchen, but I see it has some of those trendy things mentioned: granite, glazed cabinets, different color island, stainless steel etc. I’d take this in a minute!

Granite Countertops – Now, mind you, I just got granite countertops in my kitchen this year and while other more trendy countertop choices may become even more popular than granite, I sure don’t see these being ripped out anytime soon from homes all over the country.  I’m thoroughly enjoying my granite and feel quite blessed to have it.  I’ve also heard that the standard dark granite with maple cabinets are like the “builder’s basic” of spec homes from the 2000’s.

Stainless Steel – Again, I have all stainless in my kitchen now and see it as being the new “classic”, but I could be all wrong about that too.  I think stainless is sleek and fits in with classic and contemporary all at the same time.

Glazed Kitchen Cabinets and Furniture Style Islands – This is another trend that really took off this last decade.  I did the white glazed cabinets in my old house and loved it all then, but I can see the glazed cabinet look coming to an end in the not too distant future.  I see less and less of that now in fact.  White kitchens are still very popular,  but I’m not seeing a lot of the glazed look in magazines right now.

What do you think about the trend for white cabinets and the darker or different colored island? Again,  I think this is a great look and can be done well, but is it destined to be trendy and therefore, dated in a few years?  Only time will tell.


(from Red Barn Properties)

Large Two-Story greatrooms – Called McMansions for more than 10 years, these large overbuilt and slightly impersonal homes are all over the country.  During the boom years in real estate, more and more people were moving into these large and spacious homes, but now that the economy has come to a screeching halt, the McMansions are not quite in vogue anymore.  I’ve seen McMansions defined as large homes on a small lot, with some trendy architectural features, with perhaps a large 2-story greatroom.  A big mansion wanna-be, perhaps??  More people are loving smaller homes now and I see the trend going towards smaller, yet more architecturally appealing features added that make the home more livable and desirable.  There was a big discussion in the comments about what constitutes a McMansion and I found that quite interesting too.

So, the question is:  what is the perfect sized home now?  And what features do you love and can’t live without?

Here’s a great post my friend, Julia from Hooked on Houses did last year on the 2-story greatroom trend.

Our house is about 3,000 s.f.  Sure, we have extra guestrooms that don’t get used all the time, but when kids come home to visit or we have guests drop by, they sure come in handy.  So, I don’t see our house as WAY over the top when it comes to size or appointments.  I can see this topic will be a hot one for the coming years, as more people are down-sizing and deciding that they CAN live with less amenities and space.IM000841

(my own Tuscan look from my old sunroom in GA.  I did enjoy it and thought I did a pretty good job with it, but no, I don’t want another faux plaster wall).

The Tuscan Look – This is one trend that I saw was hugely popular in the beginning of 2000’s and one that I can definitely see waning now.  I think the authentic look of a European farmhouse is beautiful and can be done well even new, if the architectural features and amenities of a home are taken into consideration.  After all, Europe is known for its crumbling buildings and lovely old patinas and real tarnished walls. But, unfortunately this trend went really crazy for a few years and there were faux stucco walls being thrown up all over the place, along with wine and grape motifs.  Tuscan gone wrong!  I’ll admit I did a faux stucco wall in my old house (see above) and I loved it then.  Would I do it again.  Nope! 🙂 That’s not to say I think all faux finishes are out now. There are still plenty of them out there, like Venetian plaster that I think are gorgeous.  But, I’ve seen that trend slowing down.

I do see more of a rustic and aged look on furniture now than ever before.  I painted my black kitchen chairs with a sanded down, distressed look 8 years ago and that is still going strong.  Will this look dated one day?  Maybe, but I hope not anytime soon.  There really seems to be a love of old things more than ever before, using recycled wood and repurposing the old and that is a very good thing, not to mention living with older furniture just feels right. cb.bath

(from New England Classic)

Beadboard – I have fallen in love with beadboard and still love it, as I know many all over blogland have also.  It’s been a steady and growing trend for at least 10 years now and I don’t see that stopping.  I put up beadboard in my old house in Georgia back in 2001, in a couple of rooms.  It’s really a throwback to when it was popular the first time around and after looking  it up, beadboard first originated back in the 1800’s.   Those old bathrooms with real beadboard on the walls and the hexagon tiles were so pretty and classic then and still are today.  So, do you ever see beadboard going out of vogue?? I really don’t, I think it’s here to stay.

So, what in the world do you think about all of this??  I’m opening up this discussion for all of your comments and opinions, so feel free to chime in! Add in any trends that you see from the last decade that you think is going OUT.  I certainly have not been immune to trends myself, but hope that I’ve grown to be a bit more discerning about it all.  Classic is what I try to keep in the forefront of my decision making at all times.

Now, I do know that we can’t all live by what is “in” and “out”, but you have to admit that the trends definitely grab our attention, like it or not.

I think this will be fun to talk about!  And while we are discussing, where will we go in the next 10 years?  That’s also open for speculation.  I hope things don’t change drastically like they did in decades past.  I see cocooning and nesting being more important than ever in our current economy and that means we, as women will find the best ways to make our homes beautiful, liveable and functional for OUR families and do it frugally.

Where do we go from here and what will we cringe at looking back at 2000’s first decade?

I did read in the last couple of years that brass will be making a comeback and perhaps chintz will too.

Don’t forget the Top Projects of 2009 party tomorrow!! Come by bright and early to link up your post and let’s have some fun.

- Rhoda


  1. Warren and I have been discussing the merits of stainless for our kitchen. I think we have decided to go with black for a more classic look.

    We are not convinced that stainless isn’t a trend. Fun and different though it is….

    This is a great post. I really enjoyed going back memory lane. I have done some “doozies”. Remember sponge painting? I did a terrible job on our boys’ room when they were toddlers.

    Becky K

  2. Love this post Rhoda! Audley and I were discussing before redoing our dining room (you can see it on my page) the different styles we had carried through the years and what was now “in”. I didn’t want this room to be one of those fads. In the 15 years since we married, I have gone from ultra-girlie (poor man slept on Laura Ashley bedding for eight years!) to farmhouse and have finally settled on a mix a classic and contemporary. I think that is the most common style out there at the moment and it works! An antique dresser with a modern sofa; painted furniture mixed with contemporary art. I just works.

    Thanks for sharing!


  3. Great post, Rhoda !! If there is one thing I’ve learned is that what used to be in will eventually be out and then, at some point, back *in* again. LOL I love our granite countertops and stainless steel appliances and can’t imagine waivering from my *lurve* for them. That being said, I, too, cringe at some of my decorating choices through my decorating adventures but am starting to feel more comfortable in my choices the older I get. I’ve loved following your posts way back when on Great Impressions (w/ Maureen, Xanti, LouAnn, etc) and look forward to seeing what you get into in 2010 !! Stop by sometime, Becca

  4. I believe that the zebra rugs (the ones that actually look like a zebra skin) will turn out to be a trend. I like them in the right room setting, but they are too trendy for my taste. I also think burlap will end up being a trend. I like it though and it is affordable, but the plethora of it will decrease over time, I believe. Of course, these are just my opinions. Time will tell. I love your post today!!

  5. I am not a fan of the island being a different color. It just looks off to me.

    But I do LOVE the 2 story great rooms everything just feels so spacious! It is amazing what high ceiling can do for a house.

  6. Love this post, and you’ve touched on almost all the things that have crossed my mind the past year or two, as I work on this old farmhouse we currently call home! In the 1970s, I worked as a decorator’s assistant – my job was to accessorize the builders’ models he decorated. It was a fun job, but it sure made me aware of trends. My boss used to fly out to CA (from MN) to see what the builders there were doing, and bring it back in his models. But I digress…
    I’ve said for a few years now that I think both SS appliances and granite countertops were going to be the item that date stamps a kitchen. They used to be special, now they are considered standard, so it won’t be long before the pricier remodels will be looking for something different. I’m thinking, too, that with the economic downturn, it’s going to be “uncool” to look too pricey – we’re going to be looking for ways to look good and fresh with what we have – kind of a “recession chic,” if you will. I currently need new countertops – hate the formica pebbly stuff I have – but I’m not sure what I’ll use instead. I’m watching everything carefully.

  7. Loved the post….sometimes it is so hard to recognize what is trendy and not fall into the ‘trap’…also, there is trendy and there is trendy…some have more staying power than others….I would not mind trendy that lasted 5-10 years for instance vs. something that was out in 1-2 years….ouch, way too much work and money. I have to admit that I have fallen for several of the trends you mentioned…but, I am getting better at my decorating and a lot is thanks to the great bloggers like you who share their opinions and knowledge. Hope you have a great 2010.

  8. Rhoda, I hear you – I am SO over the 2 story great room! When we moved to Marietta we chose a house with ~10 ft ceilings in the living room, although it does have a 2 story foyer. In Birmingham we had a cathedral ceiling and I would have rather had another room upstairs for sure!

    Not to mention that they are a pain to heat and I am always paranoid about one of the kids climbing over the ledge or throwing something down on someone’s head. That’s just my neuroses, though…

  9. Great Post! We redid our kitchen two years and invested alot of money into it because we wanted it to last. As I look around and see the white cabinets, furniture like island, oil rubbed bronze fixtures, stainless steel apliances and granite counters, I’m thinking did I fall into the trap? I’m hoping that I made those choices because I love them and not because a magazine told me to. Certain things come ago, but I think white classic cabinets are a main stay… I hope. I too remember the sponge paint technique and the tusan look. I think I’ve had both in homes at one point. One thing that was big that you didn’t mention was wallpaper. It was big a few decaded ago and then fell by the wayside. It’s in vogue again isn’t it? I’m still not convinced on wallpaper route (too much work to remove it). I can’t wait to see what you do in 2010.

  10. A few trends that will definitely date themselves in the near future: vinyl lettering and stenciling numbers on everything (stairs, canisters, chair seats, etc.) and painted accent walls. Those definitely scream HGTV.

  11. That was a fun post! I had the Tuscan look and the British Out of Africa look – all those faux finishes! I’m thinking probably concrete countertops are a fad but soapstone and butcher block have been around since forever and I think they’ll be around for a long time as countertop material. I notice more and more people using butcher block on there counters these days. Granite is standard now in every new home but it’s so durable that I don’t see it as a fad. But I think people who want the latest will start to look at granite like laminate. Oh…it’s granite…. LOL! They’ll be expecting something new and exciting. I like wallpaper in certain rooms and I know it’s making a comeback.
    I do what I like and my tastes change all the time!


  12. Very interesting post. I have really enjoyed some of the past trends, but I am not one to buy into it in a big way. I think trendy accessorizine makes more sense and this also saves the budget. I did the turquoise thing once, so I really don’t think I will be doing it again. lol Hugs, Marty

  13. What a fun post! I think that for those of us that truly love to decorate, we will always have a little bit of what is “trendy” in our homes…we like to stay on the cutting edge of design, right? 🙂 And that also means that times and tastes will change through the years as our lives naturally evolve. It gives us more of a reason to keep on redecorating, right! LOL!

    Personally, I see anything that has been around before in older homes and here in some way or another through the decades, something that is NOT a trend. That means it’s stood the test of time & should be “classic”. White kitchens, certain colors, wood floors, brass, silver, painted furniture, wallpaper, marble, natural materials, beadboard, panelling….all classics in my book. The exact lines and styles and patterns may change through the years to reflect current tastes, but these should all be considered “here to stay”.

    What’s coming up to be big? Brass, but a much softer antique brass (using this in my bedroom, thank you very much! haha!!), wallpaper (been gaining in momentum the past few years, planning to use it in our powder room….I predict it will pretty much be popular again, but only in smaller spaces, dramatic spaces), less cluttered homes as people go for a cleaner look in their smaller homes.

    Thanks, this was fun :)!

  14. Great post! Basically I go with what I like and not worry about trends…it’s not for anyone to love but me and so I go with the flow. Strange am I? I do love me some beadboard and want to put some up this year in my kitchen. I have the black appliances and love this look. I let my hubby talk me into putting hardwoods in and I love them but oh keeping them clean is a pain with small children. But oh they are beautiful!

  15. Great post Rhoda. I’ve fallen into the trend-trap myself in the past and with now our farmhouse and all of the projects the past two years, learning more about design every day, I’ve finally learned to think neutral and classic on the big things and to decorate and accessorize with things that make me happy – trendy or not, at least changing the look of a the room will be a lot easier and less expensive. 🙂 That being said, painting my red living room is next on my list!

    Our home is probably too big for the soon-to-be just two of us with 4 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms but it feels just right to us. We plan on staying here forever. Besides, I’ve always wanted a dressing room. 😉

  16. I really enjoyed this post. When I think about some of the decorating choices I made 12 years ago, as a young bride, I start to laugh….and I thought that I’d like those things forever!

  17. I’m sure I’ve got some things going on that are trends now, and I only hope they hang in there. Although, colors always seem to be in and out of style in a cyclical way. I wonder if back in the 70’s people were excited about getting their Harvest Gold or Avocado appliances?

  18. This is a great discussion idea, Rhoda. I have moved so many times that I have had the pleasure of reinventing my home each time. I definitely went through the sponge painting and wallpaper phase. Even had a business faux painting back in the 90’s. I never embraced the faux plaster though. Too much work! I have granite countertops, but didn’t want them. Everybody was doing it. It ended up that the builder didn’t know what soapstone was or even HONED granite. There is still ALOT of Tuscan out here in SoCal. It does fit the style of homes, but I’m so sick of it. We also live in a wine area, so there you go. I agree with Stacey that there are several things that are classic. If things return, they are always a little different, like clothing styles. I just bought a new dryer and I didn’t go with color or the new retro styles. It was difficult, believe me. But, I didn’t want to be locked into a color and still need a top loading washer for felting. Okay, I’ve gone on enough. Good post!

  19. I just always ask myself, “do I love this or am I drawn to it because it’s trendy.” If I truly love my pieces then it doesn’t matter if it is a trend or not — because I will love it regardless.

    My guesses:

    *Tan raingutters/trim/garages (I remember these going “out” after the 70’s) — now they date the houses of that era.
    *Stainless – I may be wrong. It may stick around because it is still what is used in commercial/high-end kitchens. I don’t love stainless.
    *Tan two-tone paint.
    *Anything olive or harvest gold (haven’t we already figured this out and yet I still see so many homes with olive green).
    *Too much brown anything (I don’t love it — it’s just a trend).
    *Dark wood – lived with this in the 70s. I confess that I do everything as light as I can. White is timeless.

  20. Enjoyed the post so much! We live in an old 100+ home and desire to keep the integrity of the home close to the original period though with a more updated look.

    I have never been one for trends and think it is somehow a economic conspiracy to keep the money flowing! LOL I dress more classic and just update with a few accessories and pretty much do the same with my home.

    Fans were supposedly one of the outdated trends but for some parts of the country they are so essential. That someone would rather be hot during the summer for the sake of a trend seems silly to me.

    I think living with what you love is the best advice against trends-


  21. Hi Rhoda 🙂

    I’ve had this subject on my mind for such a long time, because we’re trying to bring this old house back to what it was and I don’t want to put anything in it that is too trendy. Paint can be changed, so I use what I like, but other than that we really try to stay away from trends for permanent things.

    As far as decor I think burlap, chalkboard paint and stenciled words/vinyl letters will all go out. I have these things in my home, because I love them now, but I didn’t buy or do too much of it, so that I could easily change it out.

    Tuscan kitchens or themed kitchens in general will go out. I personally think they’re dated now, unless you live in a home that supports that look. Remember the southwestern theme that was all the rage in the 80s?

    The all white look will go out for sure. Oh I love the way it looks right now, but I remember not so long ago that it was in and that we all went nuts with color after living in all that white.

    Lastly, anything considered “modern” or contemporary will go out. Remember all that black lacquer and chrome from the 80s?

    The things that are timeless.. white appliances, bead board, wood floors and antiques. Other than that it’s all up for grabs in my opinion.

    Great post 🙂


  22. wow!! my thoughts exactly! When we built our house about 5 years ago, the top of the list was granite, oil rubbed bronze, stainless steel appliances, beadboard and big ceramic tile. I also have the obligatory furniture-style island. Now, I’m concerned they are too trendy. Which is why I want to paint my cabinets white and get carrera marble countertops and brushed nickel or chrome fixtures. I think stainless steel is going to still be ok. I do like my beadboard and my white hexagon tile in the bathrooms. My grandmother commented that she couldn’t wait to get rid of her beadboard- 60+ years ago. She was floored when I told her I was installing beadboard.

    Great discussion, Rhoda.


  23. Fun discussion, Rhoda!

    I try to steer my boat away from trends and go with classics when possible. I don’t like trends. Clothes or otherwise. I have a friend who wears jackets she had in college from forty years ago. She bought great cashmere sweaters then, and they still look great!


    Sheila 🙂

  24. As someone who has been in the building business for quite some time, I have seen a lot of things come and go. Painted and glazed cabinets, maple cabinets, granite and stainless are all still very popular in my area. I do not have all of them in my own home, but I did do knotty alder cabinets, granite and went with black appliances once again. I am getting ready to install beadboard, but it is fitting for my house since we built a “new” bungelow. Glazed walls are still hot here, but I did just talk a homeowner out of doing her entire house with glazed walls. Yikes. It is hard to say what will be “in” tomorrow and even if something is not, can any of us really afford to change everything? Keep it classic as much as possible and no one will know what year your house was built.

  25. Eeeh gads, that Tuscan trend drives me crazy ! And I live in the wine country where it’s everywhere ! I happen to agree with what you’ve written. Stainless steel applicances, beadboard, and antique look furniture is here to stay. I have a different color furniture style island in my white kitchen that I love, but truth be told, I’m painting it another color very soon ! Out with the butternut yellow, in with the fresh gray/green.
    Can’t wait for tomorrow’s party, although I realized in hindsight, I posted a few more than ten. Ooops !

  26. Great post Rhoda….

    I tend to go with things that catch my eye…I am not one for trends….like when I painted my kitchen 2.5 years ago..BM/Beach glass….2 years later everyone is going aqua…..it all started for me with 2 pillows I bought at Homegoods….that was my inspiration for my livingroom and kitchen make-overs…..I find it so soothing…..

    Not a fan of stainless…..got rid of all my stainless and put in black appliances….my cabinets are cream colored and I love the combination…..

    My island is the same color as my cabinets…but I love a diff. colored island too….I may change it out to black at some point…but i love it just the way it is right now….

    Love granite…yours is very similar to mine….

    Love the drum shades I just picked up 2 for the sunroom at such a steal, they’re Martha Stewart with pinch pleats too cute…..I would love to know what the original $$ was…

    I painted a bathroom a really pretty shade of brown….hubbie thought it was a no no for a bathroom, if you catch his drift….I don’t care I love it !!! (love when he travels…LOL )

    My other bathrooms have wallpaper…..that is the only room I paper…that’s what I mean about doing what I like…..there is just something warm and fuzzy to me about a papered bathroom…..

    I am a nut for night lights….. I just thought I’d throw that in there…..lol

    Fun post….

    Kathy 🙂

    ps good luck with your on-line discussion !!!

  27. I hope with everything in me that oil rubbed bronze plumbing and faux Tuscan will both go away soon. Here in So California, we’ll likely always have some version of Tuscan/Wine Country/Provence going on because of our weather and landscapes, but the faux paint jobs and giant iron everything and dark, oplulent fabrics and fake grapes are killing me! That whole look needs to lighten up (a lot). I’m with you in thinking that stainless appliances are now a standard classic. And yes, there may currently be a beadboard backlash because of the glut of DIY projects on blogs, tv and magazines (let’s face it, it’s easy to install and usually looks great) but I think it’s also classic and, used in the right way, adds great character to the kind of house that’s suited for it. Like mine! I have two projects on deck… one with real wood and one using your favorite beadboard wallpaper! I’ll be sure to post pics of the second one because it’s thanks to you I found that stuff in the first place.

  28. Rhoda,
    Wow does this post bring back lots of my past growing up and early decor as an adult!
    I am with Tracy…cannot stand faux anything and there’s so MUCH of it here in ATL, and cannot stand the heavy drapes and over the top goop!
    Looking forward to seeing you this weekend!

  29. Great post! I was thinking about this same topic recently because we’ve started to update our kitchen. We plan on moving within the next 5 years so I wanted to make sure that whatever we choose for our kitchen now will still be in style when we sell. We went with granite countertops which will definitely still be more stylish than our previous laminate ones! I think high-end finishes like granite, marble, wood floors, moldings, quality wood furniture stay popular because they are classics and have already been around for years (even centuries!). Plus for most people, they are too expensive to replace because of new trends!

    But a trend that I think will pass is monochromatic color schemes for rooms. Done well, these rooms can look beautiful, but I predict people will grow bored of all-white or all-grey rooms.

  30. Connie Bishop says:

    Your post was timely and most interesting. I’ve been decorating for fifty years – since I was a teenager in my bedroom and can mark each decade with decorating trends. You can’t sell people what they already have or have been looking at for years so the trends generally shift about every ten years. It’s called Marketing!

  31. I am with you–beadboard and white kitchens stay—although this month’s House Beautiful has lots of patchwork and they say it is a new trend–yuck!

  32. Yikes Rhoda! I think I’m in trouble…I have almost everything you mentioned as being on it’s way “out” in our home and it’s only al little over three years old. I guess I’ll have to keep all of this in mind when we move which will happen eventually since we are a military family.

    ~Blessings, ~Melissa

  33. Thanks for the post! I agree and disagree! As a faux finisher, I have had many calls lately to glaze cabinets or even do some cooler finishes on cabinets. I think people are wanting to keep their cabinets, update them, rather than replace them. I glaze tons of cabinets! Yes, Tuscan is on the out, however, I can see areas where it will remain in. The wine countries for one, and in Texas, Tuscan Texan is still very hot. Stencilled words and letters are on the way out, but there are still some awesome things going on with plasters and stencils! Teals and browns are very hot… for now… In ten years, who knows! Granite is not “green”, but many exciting countertop options are coming on the horizon. I say go with what you really love, and in 10 years if you are tired of it, it is OK to change!

  34. Rhoda, this was so interesting to read! Thanks! I, FINALLY, as I got older decided to do what I loved and NOT what was “popular” or “in”. I removed every inch of wallpaper in my home and painted: and in all the colors I love, browns, golds, greens, rusts. I LOVE IT and don’t think I will tire of it soon. I have very neutral furniture so I can change out pillows etc. The things I LOVE are all the things I have from around the world, Japan, Africa, etc. thanks to the fact that my FIL was a pilot and a SHOPPER! I WISH so much I could redo my kitchen, it is 25 years old and I want ALL NEW STUFF!!!!:):):) XO, Pinky

  35. Granite and stainless are far too expensive to be “going out” any time soon. Brass…there’s still a lot of brass around..it is classic and will never really go out of style. It is one of those items that is personal preference, I think. Chintz…another classic that won’t ever go out of style….same with beadboard. Beadboard has been around a long long time and will always be a good choice.
    Oil rubbed bronze most likely will fade with time but not overnight…White kitchen cabinets will NEVER, EVER go out of style but, like you, I think the glazing is already out. Faux plaster…gone!
    This was fun, Rhoda…thanks for the great post.
    When does your link go up for tomorrow??

    • I think white kitchen cabinets may fall out of favour when people come to realise that some stains ( I tried turmeric on a white sample and it still shows a faint yellow colour after much scrubbing) will stay on it and it is difficult to keep it white. Also, personally, I prefer a light timber look as I find it warmer.

  36. Hi Rhoda,
    I really enjoyed this post today! It’s true – in everything (even sports and food!) there are trends that come and go (remember the 70’s and quiche and tennis?!!). I think the best thing to do is to really follow your heart when it comes to decorating your own home. I’ve always believed that if I loved something it would be okay, and that I would want it around in my home for a long time. And since I never shop in conventional furniture or accessory stores I don’t really worry about trends too much! I have such an eclectic style it all works out in the end.
    I was really aware of my style when I saw all my stuff being hauled out to the moving truck, and sitting together in big piles when we remodeled. Everything was so differernt, yet still worked together to create a cohesive look somehow. That made me very happy!
    As for stainless in the kitchen, well they’ve been using it forever in professional kitchens all over the world, I don’t think it will ever truly be “out of style” just not used as often in every builder home etc as a sort of “stand-by” to represent quality. Which doesn’t always match the actual quality of some of the new homes I’ve been through lately!! If you ask me – and that’s MY two cents on that subject!
    I’m looking forward to tomorrow’s post, it should be lots of fun!
    Thanks for playing hostess!
    Oh, and by the way, Happy New Year! Whew, so glad 2009 is behind us, finally!!
    Heidi – Heart and Home

    • Totally agree with you that if you love something, it will be OK. Yes, following your heart is a great way to go. Having said that, just feel that white kitchen cabinets will be too much work to keep white. Tried turmeric on a white sample and after much scrubbing, a faint yellow tinge remained. Light timber for me, so warm.

  37. Toni Fleischmann says:

    I truly appreciate Rhoda’s analysis of decor styles and what’s “in” and what’s “out”……I just think that in a materialistic society like ours that is consumer driven, ALL styles, colors, etc, will come and go over time. Just consider how colors cycle in and out only with different names! For instance celery green is now celedon! Let’s face, it, the designers and builders have to figure out a way to keep us wanting and buying. It is just the reality we live with. But that is what is fun, figuring out new ways to make what we are used to (or tired of) look fresh and different……to me that is REAL STYLE. I’d much prefer to live in a home that looks like real people live in it as opposed to the perfectly appointed home that is void of life, personality and imperfections that come with a FAMILY sharing the same space. The world is too diverse, and there are LOTS and LOTS of “correct” styles, colors, etc. I think its wrong to think that because what we like isn’t featured in the latest decor magazine, doesn’t mean it is “out”. If you think about it, those magazines often feature a very limited range of styles (either all modern, or cottage, traditional or country….etc). True decorating, to me, is finding your own way, pulling from new trends, but incorporating your interests, hobbies, favorite colors, etc and creating a space that reflects ones life. To me that is a STYLE that never goes out and that is uniquely ones own. Toni

  38. Rhoda, what a great post and reading your insites wee fun for me to read. I have never been a trendy gal,either. In fact I usually am never in. Lets face it, by time we pick up on the trends in the marketplace the design world has already moved on to something else, that is what keeps the consumer buying. I spend a great deal of time figuring out what I truly love and pretty much stick with that. I might add a disposable trend to freshen the look up but never anything that is a costly. You gave some really good information to your readers. Wonderful job,Kathysue

  39. Trends that should be over: Faux French, to include burlap, lettering and numbering, crowns, blackboards, birdcages, fleur de lis, clock faces, etc . Ikea, et al. Ditto Ballard Designs. Shabby Chic, Pottery Barn-esque rooms with white slipcovers, seagrass rugs, and espresso/black wood. And, I know I’ll be scorned here (cringe). . . beadboard. Yes, dear; beadboard.

    I’m sorry. ; )

  40. Rhoda, great post and food for thought. We have downsized..maybe a tad too much..We thought that 2600 square feet was too big, and it was for us, especially the power bills and cleaning, but now we are at 1400 square feet and I think a happy medium would have been about 1800-2000. I don’t have enough wall space or storage space, but then whats to say I would have enough with 500 square feet more..Probably not!
    I have had stainless appliances and yes I like the look of them, but they are a witch to keep clean. I prefer white appliances myself and that’s what I have here. Black is fine too, but shows dust, lol. I have white tile on my counters here and yes, I would like a light color granite and that might come in the future. Our home was such a steal we grabbed it last spring and doing some fix up as we can, although it’s perfectly liveable as is..

  41. Hi Rhoda,

    I know this is a few days late, but I wanted to chime in… hope that’s ok. In the next couple of months I will be painting my living room. In my old house it was Tiffany box blue, in my living room now it’s the same Tiffany shade. Now that we are about to put beadboard (I don’t think it’s trendy either, btw), I think I’m going with a lighter aqua, but still in the same feel. I don’t think it will be going out of “style” anytime soon, since “Thunderbird” and “TIffany Box” blues are classic, timeless colors. Am I right or should I go with white?


  42. If we all keep blogging, we’ll look back at these posts years from now and laugh at our predictions. 🙂

    I don’t think stainless is going anywhere. As long as commercial kitchens remain full of stainless steel, the home cook will want it. On the commercial side, stainless isn’t a trend. It’s the standard.

    Likewise, I don’t think beadboard is going t be any more or less popular in the future because it isn’t “in style”. It’s a classic element that is found in certain types of home.

    Christopher Peacock might be the best barometer for those who want to see what’s going to be “big” next. I’m not entrenched in the world of kitchen design to know if there is someone else to watch, but I think he’s been ahead of trend on a few things.

    Guess what’s on his website right now? Two tone kitchens unlike the white/black island ones we all know. Ones with walnut-looking wood and gray. It looks icky to me now, but I imagine in a year or two, I’ll be gushing over his colors.

  43. As my sister would say, “I have an opinion but it might not be the popular one.” Sorry, no stainless steel appliances for me. I think it makes a kitchen look ready for an autopsy. Can’t go wrong with white, it makes every colour in the room look clean and bright. I just finished distressing a 70’s oak table and chairs so I hope it’s here to stay. It looks like my Gramma used to come for tea and gave it to me in her will. Furniture and accessories that suggest personal history and travels are classics. If you can’t tell your guests about taking down that zebra on safari, best to skip the rug. I’m a fan of eclectic decor, leaves people wondering how exciting your life may be. Beadboard is my building supply staple, it can enhance and problem solve any wall. But my house is nearly 100 years old, so it works. Oiled bronze and brushed nickel aren’t going anywhere. It’s the bright metals, brass and chrome, that have had their time. Too distracting.

  44. Just from a practicality point of view, stainless steel is not gonna disappear. It has to be the easiest to clean and maintain, and just happens to look good if used right too. Im still not too sure about it in the home though, it can look a bit harsh.

  45. It’s now 2012, and I don’t see stainless steel or granite getting any less popular. Why would it? Stainless Steel and granite are super-durable and easy to maintain. Porous stone countertops or synthetic countertops are never going to be as long-lasting as granite, and a painted kitchen appliance will never be as timeless and durable as stainless steel.

    Oil-rubbed bronze does seem to have hit the saturation point. I think it’s good for accent pieces or light fixtures, but I wouldn’t do a whole house in it.

    Personally, I still rather like antique brass. It’s never really been in style, but it’s never really been out of style, either.

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  47. JeanneMara says:

    I heard “McMansions” described as “Neo-classical sheet rock souffles”…I thought that was a perfect description.
    One thing I see going out of style (and am so glad to see) is the over-sized corbels, shelf brackets, and “leg” additions to cabinetry. I’m all for trying to make something look special, but the over-sized dimension that has been used for over five years has to go!
    I think stainless will be a classic.
    I have two rooms with walls that look like old-fashioned plaster. They are very well done and I don’t think they will age.
    I am tired of all the “aged” new furniture. That will definitely be a trend, but it will have variations of it that will become classic.
    Adding extra trim to crown molding will become a thing of the past as will adding trims (such as the scroll on the hood of the photo above) will definitely be a dated item.
    Bead board will stay…it really always has. It will just be less obvious than it has been lately.
    Chandeliers (especially crystal) in the kitchen are already going out. I always thought that was a silly trend. Even with a good vent for your stove, things in the kitchen tend to get mucky pretty quickly. Who wants to clean a crystal chandelier every few months?
    Granite and granite-type counters will stay but will be less obtrusive in the design. Marble has always been a go-to for a kitchen and granite will accompany it.
    Combination painted and wooden cabinets have always been classic in design, I don’t see them going anywhere. One thing I’d like to see go are these huge islands that have seating. I would really like real tables where one sits for a real meal and faces the other people who are eating.
    So, that’s my opinion (oh, and as much as I like them, schoolhouse lighting will date a kitchen in the very near future)


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