INTERIOR DESIGN: What's "In" and What's "Out"
Updated: Jul 18
A very common question I get asked is, “What’s in this year?” or “What’s trending?”
You may be wondering the same thing. Well, wonder no more!
In this article I am going to satisfy your curiosity and hopefully set you on a path of always being “in the know”. So no matter what is “in” or “out”, you will be able to style your home in a way that is relevant and beautiful.
I want to start by saying that whatever style you prefer or lean toward… IT IS IN! Interior Design is about so much more than what is trending, or what’s in, which I will touch on in just a minute.
We all know that trends change and styles come and go, but it’s what remains that makes for great interior design. Take this 1970’s retro living room for example. If you walked into a home that hadn’t been updated since 1972 — it would look a little something like this.
You may look at this picture and think “Eeew!” But guess what’s baaaaack…1970’s retro! And I for one am thrilled about it! I have mustard yellow, crushed velvet sofas in my living room and they make me so happy!
We are still using the same color palettes, the same forms and even the exact same chairs today as we see in the retro 1970’s living room. And look at the shag on that rug! The fabrics may be brighter and more vibrant, the materials more sustainable as we develop ways to recycle waste all over the world, and the wall coverings have definitely gotten an upgrade to include peel away wallpapers and 3D paneling. (I will add links at the bottom where you can shop 1970’s retro just like this if you dig it as much as I do.)
When a trend fades out and comes back, it is not the same as we left it. It is revamped, refreshed and redefined to match the style of the current era. The foundations of any great design however, have remained the same over time, and I will be touching on that in my next blog post. Subscribe to my blog and be the first to read all the amazing tips I’ll be giving away for FREE!
So WHAT IS IN and WHAT IS OUT?!?
IN: Finding the style you most relate to. The style that reflects your personality. The style that makes you feel joy and relaxed in your home. It is so easy to get on the Modern/Contemporary train right now with the images on social media and in popular magazines. But if that style does not float your boat, find the style that does.
OUT: Copycats! There are literally millions of different design variations, leaving no reason to try to recreate the exact images that you see. Besides, no two homes and no two people are identical. Find your style voice and shout it from the rooftops!! There are, of course, those few trends that were so overdone that they are no longer high on the trend food chain, for now. The farmhouse and shiplap movement for example. Even Joanna Gaines has begun adding a modern twist to her iconic farmhouse designs creating a new style — Modern Farmhouse or Farmhouse Mod!
If you do not know your style voice, we can help with that! During our first consultation with clients, we establish exactly what style is uniquely yours. Wood stained or painted cabinets? Tile or wood flooring? Drapes or naked windows? And much more! Did you know we also offer E-Design or will travel for the right project!!! You can request a consultation with us on our website.
Here are a couple fun style quizzes you can take to find out which style you most relate with.
IN: Bringing nature into your home. In the US we pride ourselves in keeping a busy schedule. Unfortunately, these same busy schedules are being linked to an increase in depression, anxiety, fear and a lost sense of self and overall peace. Studies have shown that when we are connected to nature, it takes as little as 4 minutes for our blood pressure to begin dropping. And of those interviewed in the article below, 95% of people reported feeling more calm and balanced after spending time outside. Bringing nature into your home has more positive effects on your overall health than just lowering your blood pressure and changing your mood. Check out the article below for more info.
And amazingly, it is not just actual nature — it can be images of nature in a pattern on your wallpaper or fabrics, nature’s color palettes in your blue drapes, green sofa and wood coffee table, forms of nature in your spiral staircase or it can be actual nature. You can add plants/trees in any room of your home to connect to the world around you. Look for a list at the bottom of indoor plants that also help purify the air!
OUT: Not making time to enjoy your space. Interior Design is on the rise with platforms like Pinterest, HGTV and Instagram. People are obsessed with designers like Joanna Gaines and Studio McGee, and want to replicate the lovely spaces they see these amazing and talented designers create. If you are going to make the investment to improve your home — enjoy it! Force yourself to slow down once in a while. Disconnect from the internet and all social media and appreciate your newly designed space. Invite friends over for a dinner party — catch up and play games around your new dining table. Grill out with neighbors on your patio with your new outdoor furniture. Turn your cell phone off 10 minutes earlier at night and breathe in the fresh scent of your new bedroom plants or flowers.
IN: CUSTOMIZATION! In an age where people are looking for ways to individualize themselves and stand out, we are finding so many new creative products and services. Specialty coffee shops are stirring up new and exciting drink combinations with every season. With just a word you can change the temperature in your home or turn out the lights by speaking to your in-home smart system. We even have cars that do not need conventional fuel!
A great way to customize your home is by purchasing … you guessed it … custom furnishings! This allows you to really grab hold of your style voice and match every square foot of your home to the wonderful lifestyle you want to capture. Custom pieces really tell a story. Again, connecting with an Interior Designer who can help with this would be a huge benefit. If your budget does not allow for a Designer and custom furnishings, check out antique or consignment stores for rare finds or an Etsy shop for custom/handmade plant baskets, pillow covers or kitchen hardware. Not only would you be supporting a small business run by an entrepreneur, you would be adding something to your home that is not mainstream. You may actually find the same sofa pictured in the 1970’s retro living room that you could spruce up with throw pillows that bring a pop of color!
Have you had your caramel, pumpkin spiced, vanilla bean, chocolate drizzle, oat milk, double espresso latte this fall? Talk about a custom order!
These are some handwoven baskets we ordered on Etsy for a mantle design on a project here in Dallas, TX. The quality was fantastic and it grounded the design by bringing in a natural element. We also had a custom handmade macramé wall hanging by a local artist that is placed in the entryway. Keep an eye out for these photos in 2020 when the design is complete.
To follow along on current projects, you can find me on
OUT: DIY. With all the amazing craftsmen and women emerging, trends are really leaning toward custom, one of a kind treasures. As we seek to individualize ourselves, we are looking for things that represent who we are. Art, music, food, clothing, hairstyles, tattoos, accessories, shoes and design are all ways we express ourselves. Homemade is being exchanged for Handmade, Custom Made and Made to Order. On my projects I always look for ways to showcase local artisans. I get to learn about the person and the process behind each piece. Whether it's furniture, art or decor — the design seems much more intimate when you know the craftsman and the story behind it. This also promotes relationship, which is very important to me. You will begin to see Pop-Ups arising more and more as these creatives connect and partner with local businesses.
Take a look around your home- what does it say? If I were sitting in your living room, what would I observe? What feeling do you want your home to have? What is the function for each space in your home? What do you want your style to reflect about you? These are all questions to ask yourself when designing any space.
From the title of this article, you may have thought you were going to get a list of Do’s and Don’ts. You may have thought you were going to have 3 new paint colors to choose from or that I would confirm your most recent purchase by telling you what is “in”. If you are looking for that, keep reading. I will include these kinds of things on the blog, but more importantly I want to help my readers understand what design is and how to find themselves in it.
My heart for the articles on this blog is to educate and create a new mindset surrounding design. To help every reader get deeper in touch with themselves to figure out exactly who they are and what they need and not just do what everyone else is doing because it is “in”. To find their style voice and feel confident with their design decisions.
I am working with a client who told me they loved the modern, casual, cozy style by another designer they follow on Instagram, and wanted that look in their home. The design combines contrasting colors like black and white and pair them with natural wood tones and metals.
After more probing into my client’s lifestyle and desires, we discovered they LOVE vibrant colors!!! Does this mean we didn’t go with that modern, relaxed look? Nope…we integrated the two styles together to create something unique to them. So we have a casual, cozy, bohemian design with some modern accents. And it is exactly what they wanted! They just needed help figuring it out. (Pics to come in 2020- follow along for front row seats when they go live!)
I hope this article inspired you to get deeper in touch with yourself. I hope this article challenged you to look at the design of your home with a new perspective. I hope this article empowered you to confidently find your style voice and let the whole world know it!
Subscribe below for more on what's "in" and what's "out" when it comes to interior design, and to learn more about the process of transforming your space into your dream home. The next post will include info like what is design, what do I do once I find my style voice and much more! You don’t want to miss it!
Thank you for stopping by! It was great connecting with you. Tell me your style voice in the comments below! I want to get to know you! Don’t forget to subscribe to receive more articles just like this one. And remember — the style you love — IT IS IN!
Here are the links I promised earlier to get that awesome 1970’s retro living room look! Complete this design with the perfect rug, coffee table and lighting! And don’t forget the pillows and plants!
I used this chair in a design that will be photographed next year and the color and quality was 5-star! You can also find similar looks on CB2 and Wayfair along with many other sites.
1. Kimberly Queen Fern
2. Variegated Snake Plant
3. Barberton Daisy
4. Weeping Fig Tree
5. Red-Edged Dracaena
6. Peace Lily
7. Broadleaf Lady Palm
8. Spider Plant
9. Devil’s Ivy
Bonus 13: Aloe Vera Plant