Should You Invest in This Year’s Biggest Trends? We Investigated
These ones will stand the test of time.
Published Dec 27, 2019 12:00 AM
Trends are a funny thing. Contagious and fleeting, they are beloved one minute and tossed the next. This cycle might work well when you’re dealing with sweaters or T-shirts that you can wear until the holes start creeping in, but it’s not so practical when shopping for a sofa you’re hoping to keep for the better part a decade (or two). And while some trends in the design world eventually become timeworn classics—take hand-thrown ceramics, for instance—others have a shorter shelf life.
We’d like to take a moment to focus on the latter—the trends that, despite their undeniable appeal, may not mesh with your decor for years to come. We’re not saying to avoid them altogether, but rather to proceed with caution and ask yourself questions like “Will I still like this in five years?” and “Will it work with the decor I already have?” before pulling out your credit card. Naturally, we couldn’t just present a problem without a solution, so we also sourced a few trends that you might like to consider instead—ones that, in our humble opinion, may have a longer shelf life in your home.
Skip Globe Lamps, Try Mushroom Lamps
After the exposed-bulb craze came globe lamps and chandeliers often finished with a brass structure—a nod to mid-century Italian lighting by brands such as Stilnovo. And while we would never turn down a true piece from the Italian retailer, we’ve also seen more than enough iterations of globe lighting to last us a lifetime. Instead of jumping on the oversaturated train, may we suggest the next biggest trend in lighting design: the mushroom lamp.
These curious-looking lamps aren’t new. They were popular in the 1970s thanks to designers like Vico Magistretti. Many contemporary designers such as Tom Dixon and Normann Copenhagen are also coming on board and designing their own versions—even CB2 has one. And we’re not mad at it.
Atollo Table Light, Design Within Reach, from $915
Skip Postmodern Prints, Try Block Prints
The Internet seems to have wholeheartedly embraced postmodern lately. It’s no surprise—the trend appeals to the days when we’d wake up on Saturdays to watch Nickelodeon cartoons. Pillows adorned with tiny triangles and squiggly lines in bold primary colors can tug at our heartstrings, not to mention they’re very Instagram friendly.
Yes, postmodern prints are feeling very edgy right now, especially on larger pieces of furniture like sofas, but just try to remember your mom’s ’90s sofa and how poorly it actually evolved in your space over the years. To avoid adding another piece of decor to the world’s landfill in a few years, consider a slightly more subtle pattern, like a block-print pillow from Block Shop. While still fun and colorful, these pillows also have the potential to grow with you as your taste evolves.
Signal Pillow, Block Shop, $105
Skip Whitewashed Minimalism, Try Wabi-Sabi
The decor world will probably never fall out of love with Scandinavian style—the mix of edited minimalism and cozy vibes appeals to both our tidy tendencies and our yearning to feel comfortable in our homes. But may we suggest a small break from all-white interiors filled with sheepskin throws, black-and-white photography, and light reclaimed wood furniture and turn to another part of the world for inspiration?
Japan is the home of wabi-sabi, an aesthetic philosophy centered on the acceptance of imperfection. While this may sound a little abstract, the results can be striking. Think: minimalist, patinaed objects that only get better with age to help give your home a sense of history and maturity while still feeling understated.
Roly-Poly Dining Chair Raw, 1stdibs, $5,834
Skip Gray, Try Desert Red
While we encourage anyone who is color averse to wholeheartedly embrace one of the color predictions of the year, Benjamin Moore’s Metropolitan gray, we’re also impressed by the boldness of Sherwin-Williams’s Cavern Clay—a rich desert-toned hue.
It seems like we’ve all collectively spent the past five years running away from color—and this terracotta shade is the perfect way to dip our toe into colored rooms again. Also, the shade will pair beautifully with any millennial pink pieces and your growing array of ceramics and terracotta vessels.
Pronged Bowl, Anthropologie, from $68
Skip Graphic Rugs, Try Solid Bold Rugs
It seems as though every brand these days—even IKEA—is coming up with a line of saturated patterned rugs. And while we love the look of them in theory, graphic rugs are a little tricky to incorporate into everyday decor. If you’re on the fence about pulling the trigger on a beautiful Court Series rug, consider a vibrant viscose or silk rug—these materials have a beautiful, subtle sheen—in a bold hue like yellow mustard or pink grapefruit.
You’ll still reap the benefits of a colorful base for your room, but you’ll also gain the longevity of a rug that can evolve with your decor. And if you’re still craving bold graphic prints, try incorporating them in your pillows, throws, or artwork instead.
Lucent Rug, West Elm, from $499
Skip Terrazzo, Try Granite
Okay, hear us out. We know that granite hasn’t even fully left the design landscape yet, and we’re still cringing at the thought of another brown-hued countertop in the beloved hardy material that’s graced our kitchens for ages. So maybe we’re not quite ready for granite to come back quite yet, but brands like Fort Standard and Pieces are hard at work to make this material trend again.
Staying far away from countertops—or even kitchens—this time, these companies are instead using granite in smaller objects, from candleholders to coffee tables. And if we’re being honest, we don’t hate it. While our love for terrazzo runs deep, we’re ready to move on from the plethora of iterations on the market and jump on the next big thing.