Looking Back: What were the best (& worst) home and design trends of the 2010s?


Arati here. We’re working on an end-of-decade recap story for which I’d love to hear from you! What is the one weird/funny/crazy/clever Home & Design trend between 2010 and now that you absolutely loved (or hated)—and are totally ready to leave behind? (My answer: the organizing-books-by-color trend. Loved it, but ready to let it go.)

Let’s discuss?


Arati Menon


Kelly D. December 13, 2019
As much as an open concept floor plan makes a space feel bigger, I'm ready to embrace designated rooms again! I think that open concepts are great for entertaining, of course, but designing around a party that happens a few times a year isn't exactly fair to daily life. This layout doesn't always encourage togetherness, either. It can be so loud, with so many different things going on—cooking, TV watching, talking—that it's understandable when some family members opt to find their own private space instead. I think it's ok to not think of open concept floor plans as an emblem of modern living, and to include walls if that feels more comfortable. It makes it easier to experiment with designs, and to decide when you want company.
Camryn R. December 13, 2019
I'm very much ready to say goodbye to gallery walls! They were fun for a while, but now I think they're totally overdone and can actually make a space look cluttered if there are too many photos or decor pieces included.
Gammy December 10, 2019
Concrete used indoors (except maybe in large plant pots). How awful are those concrete kitchen counters that are rough around the edges and even though sealed, do stain. Saw a concrete couch once... can't imagine relaxing there.
Arati M. December 11, 2019
I have to say, I do sometimes love the look of concrete, but agree with you on comfort + practicality. There was a time when people were experimenting a lot with concrete floors, and they are such a disaster to maintain!
Annie Q. December 10, 2019
This is controversial, I know, but: houseplants. I think in the 2020s we'll look back and realize houseplants were just clutter in green, leafy disguise. One or two add life to a room, sure, but I'm ready for the houseplant-on-every-surface thing to stop.
Arati M. December 11, 2019
I'm not sure if houseplants will fall out of favor, but I really do hope people will start to look beyond the Fig Leaf plant!!
boulangere December 10, 2019
Not exactly a home trend, unless the kitchen is part of the home, and in my home it is. But definitely a design trend. I'd love never to see or hear the term "bone broth" ever again. Granted, commercial chicken or beef stocks are pretty bland regardless of the brand, but "bone broth" is several times the price to a degree that I've never been moved to even try it. Make your own, cook it to a deep concentration, and call it whatever you like.
Garrett F. December 10, 2019
Chalkboard walls never seem to look as nice in person as they do online. They're messy, messy, MESSY. I'm also all for saying goodbye to posters with motivational quotes on them. Sometimes they are nicely designed, but the majority of the quotes are just way too cheesy.
Arati M. December 11, 2019
I have to agree about the chalkboard walls. Not much a fan, unless it's a kid's room, and even then maybe a chalkboard you can store away?
Aja A. December 10, 2019
Also ready to say goodbye to the use of woven baskets floating on the wall as decor! At this point everyone under the sun has done this trend and it's time to move on.
Aja A. December 10, 2019
One trend that has started to bubble up in this decade and that I'm looking forward to seeing more of is the use of matte black hardware in kitchens and bathrooms. I love how the simple change of a knob or accent of a sleek black towel bar can upgrade and (tbh) transform the look of a bathroom into a space that feels both modern and luxurious. Next to grounding and natural elements like wood or seagrass, the contrast of matte black hardware is one I'm looking forward to seeing into the 2020's!
Pari K. December 10, 2019
Ooh, where do I start?
I'm very glad farmhouse chic is dying a slow death. And this is technically not a decor trend, but I'm also so over the Marie Kondo variety of minimalism. I think it creates more destructive consumption patterns in the long run (discard what you don't need today, realize you need it tomorrow and go out to buy some more). Plus, Marie Kondo makes a maximalist like me very uncomfortable.
Arati M. December 11, 2019
Hear hear for the maximalists among us. lol.
Ella Q. December 10, 2019
I love minimalist cocktail bar interiors, and am not ready to let them go!
Arati M. December 16, 2019
Care to elaborate, Ms Quittner?
Maggie S. December 10, 2019
When I first moved to NY, my mood board was nothing but floating shelves made from reclaimed wood, air plants (in mason jars, in hanging terrariums, in mason jars and terrariums on floating shelves...) and pots of monstera/fiddle-leaf figs. I know these plants did nothing to deserve this overexposure, but I'm ready for, say, alocasia to take over all our windowsills for a change.
Maurine H. December 10, 2019
I can't believe I, the minimalist, am saying this, but I'm ready to let go of all-white walls everywhere!
Arati M. December 11, 2019
I feel the same way...but about gray. ¯\ _(ツ)_/¯
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