Sorry, But It’s Time to Retire These 5 Interior Design Trends in 2024

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The beginning of any new year typically is filled with amusing lists about what’s going to be in or out in the coming months — just like this one on home design trends.

First things first, I want to note that your home is your sanctuary, and it should be a place that reflects your personal style; you don’t have to take this roundup too seriously. 

But, if you are ready to make some changes to your abode, these are the outdated trends to avoid as we enter 2024, plus a few new styles to try instead. 

Gray Paint


Gray Paint
I know, I know, people love their gray paint. I take heat on social media, or with friends, whenever I mention that its time has come and gone.

I’ll admit, I can see why the shade, which first started to gain popularity in 2008, has become such a staple; it pairs well with just about everything. Still, gray can read cold and institutional, so you might want to consider giving creamy white or warm taupe a try instead. 

Like gray, these colors are neutral. Unlike gray, the warmer hues fit nicely with the earthy color palette (think rusts, saffrons, greens and blue) that’s expected to dominate in the years ahead, including with 2024’s surprising power color — chocolate brown.    

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Open Floor Plans
Once the most desirable layout in modern home design, open floor plans took a nosedive in popularity during the pandemic as people scrambled to find a private space from which to conduct their work-from-home business. 

The trend has never recovered. 

With remote working still a thing, home offices have become the new coveted space. Also rising in popularity are sanctuary rooms, such as a home gym or meditation area, where homeowners can take a moment for the things that matter most to them. As it turns out, people like their privacy — and their doors. 

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Excessive Minimalism
Less certainly isn’t more when it comes to home design trends in 2024. The white walls and cookie-cutter spaces seen on social media can seem overdone, if not downright soulless, according to Pittsburgh-based interior designer Hayley Watters

“I think people now want to create a home that feels more like themselves, more characterful, more unique,” Watters says. “I know many of my clients are asking for a design style/language that feels unique or different. A phrase I keep hearing is, ‘I want something I haven’t seen before’ or ‘Wow, I’ve never seen that done before!’ [It] seems the status quo isn’t as exciting anymore.

Instead, Watters has noticed people using striking, dark colors on their walls, adding bold wallpaper or decorating with rich-toned textiles that are the opposite of the “Sad Beige” look trending on Instagram and TikTok. 

“There’s been a swing to the direct opposite in terms of color, and design,” Watters says. “And I’m all for it.”  

Fast Furniture


Fast Furniture
Like the fashions found on Shein or Temu, fast furniture refers to mass-produced, cheaply made pieces that often last between one and five years. 

It’s easy to see why consumers would be enamored of fast furniture: it’s affordable and trendy. Conversely, these items are often tossed after they break, giving them potential to clog up landfills. 

Still, buying heirloom or custom furniture that lasts generations can be big-time expensive. If that option is out of reach, a more sustainable alternative is looking for upcycled or thrifted pieces; some reputable sites for second-hand designer pieces include 1stDibs and Chairish. 

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Modern Farmhouse
OK, this one may seem like low-hanging fruit, but, unless you live on an actual farm, the modern farmhouse trend is dead. And while white-washed. shiplap walls (R.I.P) and rustic quote signs such as “Live, Laugh, Love” have mostly been laid to rest, the ghost of sliding barn doors still is hanging around. 

As Isy Runsewe of Isy’s Interiors points out in a Forbes Magazine article, barn doors do a poor job of blocking light, sounds and smells. They also don’t work well for privacy, which as we all now know from our pandemic experience, is the new home luxury. 

For more on 2024’s trending home styles according to local interior designers, check out Pittsburgh Magazine’s January/February issue.  

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