Houses Haunted By Dated Design (And How To Ghostbust Them)

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We all know about haunted houses. But, what if a house is haunted not by restless spirits, but by the ghosts of interior designs past – dated design specters! Interior design is an art form and with this comes many different styles, appealing to many tastes of course. While not all design trends match our tastes perfectly, some trends of the past are hauntingly unforgivable in the 21st century.

Here are a select few, along with some suggestions on how to ghostbust them!

Dated design specter 1: Flowery overload

flowery wallpaper yellow chair plant stand

Whether its upholstery or wallpaper, if a room boasts too much flower power, it’s overkill. In fact, it’s better if any bold or dramatic pattern is left off big furniture items.

Ghostbusting strategy: If you currently have a flowered chair or wallpaper, update it with a slipcover or by replacing your wallpaper with a neutral tone. For those who do love flowers, fear not, as flower accents are acceptable and encouraged.

Dated design specter 2: Valances

valances curtains

Draping yards of heavy fabric overtop your window that need dusting and adjusting on a daily basis is so out, but really was it ever in?

Ghostbusting strategy: For a simpler, cleaner look, try a balanced valence with box pleats. Even using decorative metal rods with curtains hanging on either side can help spice up a room without being overwhelming.

Dated design specter 3: wallpaper borders

wallpaper border trim blue carpet

While wallpaper is making a fashion comeback, wallpaper borders are certainly not. This 1980s decor looks silly and out-of-place, especially when placed up by the ceiling.

Ghostbusting strategy: If you would rather use wallpaper instead of paint, wallpaper the entire wall. Another good alternative is buying wall decals that are easily moveable. These allow for personalization while not being too overpowering to a room.

Dated design specter 4: everything matches

blue and white conformity living room

The catalog matchy-matchy look occurs when all room accessories come in the same box, style, and color. This not only overpowers a room, but also makes the room seem too perfect and stuffy, which can cause your guests to feel uncomfortable.

Ghostbusting strategy: The best way to decorate a room is to acquire pieces and accessories over time. Allow yourself to gravitate towards strong, prominent pieces. Also, remember to not be afraid to mix and match woods, glass, or painted items.

Dated design specter 5: too many pillows

bed with pillows

Pillows are supposed to be used as accent pieces. If you spend over five minutes adjusting pillows or if someone comments on your pillow collection, it is time to give some away.

Ghostbusting strategy: Adding a few pillows to your bed or couch will allow the right amount of color and texture, so your room pops without having to swim through a sea of feathers.

Dated design specter 6: toilet rugs

small bathroom toilet rug

These furry, oftentimes, brightly colored rugs that are cut to fit around your toilet are never a good idea. They also usually come with a matching toilet seat cover, which just adds to the appalling nature of this design trend and makes your already tiny bathroom seem even tinier.

Ghostbusting strategy: If you do want a rug in your bathroom, a rectangular rug that is placed away from the base of the toilet is recommended which allows for a much cleaner, spacious look.

Revamp and redefine

If you are a victim or know someone who is to any of these top dead design trends, you need not worry. There are many easy and affordable solutions to revamp your interior design style.

Do you agree or disagree with the above? Do you have your own dated design specters that should have been mentioned above?

Tell us all about it in the comments section!


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Cate Morgan-Harlow

Cate Morgan-Harlow is an all arounder, writing about how-to, DIY, and design with gusto. She is a shadowy figure with a mysterious past.