Our homes are one of the many parts of our lives where we can express our unique tastes. Within the walls where we eat, laugh, cry, work, nurture, grow, and sleep is a space that’s ours to create. Shift the furniture around. Color the walls. Hang wild art and display keepsake mementos. As I see it, the only mandate when decorating our homes is that we adhere to what we truly love—even if that means leaning into or avoiding any of these outdated home décor trends for 2022.

Yep, there’s the crutch: There are décor elements that go by the wayside. Ask any interior designer “what’s a look that you’re so over?” and they’ll likely pause and say something like, “I’d be thrilled to never see [fill in the blank] in a living room again.”

It makes sense, given that we’re often shifting and calculating what we wear to match the latest sartorial breeze. Our homes are just as subject to fall into a dated crutch. But what exactly are those snags? I asked three design experts for their take on the top outdated décor trends to reconsider in 2022. While some of their answers surprised me, all of them got me excited to shift, paint, and even donate a few things.

But just like any “rule,” these are meant to be broken. Take from here what speaks to you and leave the rest. It’s your home. Heck, I still pair my skinny jeans with all the “wrong” footwear—and I love it.

Feature image courtesy of Liana Levi.

Image by Claire Huntsberger

Outdated Trend #1: Fast Furniture

Here’s a sobering fact: The EPA estimates that Americans generated more than 12 million tons of furniture waste in 2018 (the most recent year reported), nearly 10 million tons of which went to landfill. That’s reason enough to live with less. And it’s inspiration to rethink mass-produced, poor quality furniture items, believes interior designer Liz Lipkin. We’re likely to ditch the fast-and-quick pieces in a few years, “because they don’t hold up, or they become outdated,” she says. 

Consider Swapping for: Vintage

Image courtesy of Hayley Pannekoecke of Kip&Co.

The next time you’re considering that super cheap coffee table, take a beat. Lipkin suggests going vintage and antique shopping. “In addition to having more character and being a lot more fun to shop for, antique furniture was built to last. Buying vintage saves money in the long run and reduces your environmental impact.” This is a total win-win.

Outdated Trend #2: All-White Kitchens

There is an undeniable freshness to an all-white space. Clean and neutral, it’s a palette that complements any and all décor inclusions. Yet, washing every wall in this hue is playing safe these days, say Lyndsey Scott and Wendy Robinson, co-founders and principals of How We Haven. “All-white kitchens can feel very sterile and flat,” believes Scott. “Having little diversity and void of personality, they lack the ability to evoke an inspiring emotion.”

Consider Swapping for: Mix Tones

Photo by Danae Horst.

The fix? Let the rainbow shine in this room. The same goes for different materials and finishes. “Right now, we are seeing a lot of mixed-toned kitchens,” Robinson tells me. “A blending of white and colored cabinets with wood islands creates more interest with the texture and color.”

Outdated Trend #3: Shiplap

There was a time when I would have put shiplap on every wall. The look is textured, inviting, and warm. Of course, it still is, however more contemporary options warrant a look today. “Shiplap is overdone,” say Scott and Robinson. It’s been too many places and graced too many surfaces.

Consider Swapping for: Vertical Lines

Photo by Nikole Ramsay.

For a current and refreshed vibe, Scott and Robinson believe you don’t have to totally part from shiplap. Flip it—literally. Install it vertically. Doing so brings the eye upward, making a space feel more expansive. The design duo also recommends trying a slat wall as another way to add some depth.

Outdated Trend #4: Signs

I love a good reminder. Something that marks where I am or nudges me how to feel. (You know the ol’ lipstick-on-the-mirror affirmation? It’s still a winner, in my book.) But the hanging of certain phrases in the home needs a rethink, say Scott and Robinson. “You don’t need a sign to tell you that you are in the kitchen or the bathroom,” implores Scott, who believes all farmhouse decor is gently fading.

Consider Swapping for: European Farmhouse Aesthetic

Photo courtesy of Las Perelli.

Now, this is not to be confused with the more global rustic look. According to Robinson, European farmhouse style, which boasts vintage furniture, patinaed tables, utilitarian pieces, and lots of books, is “on-trend right now.”

Outdated Trend #5: Accent Walls

Is it non-committal? A partial fix? A quick dose of décor interest? Whatever the accent wall is to you, Lipkin says it’s time to “put it behind us.” That’s right. Confining a gorgeous color to only one dimension limits its potential and is very in the past, believes the designer.

Consider Swapping for: Coloring Every Wall

Photo by Molly Winters.

If you have a proclivity to wash only one wall in a color, consider all the others walls. “It’s time to level up and give the whole room the attention it deserves,” says Lipkin. Painting an entire room completely transforms the look, feel, and total vibe of a space. So does wallpaper, continues Lipkin. “If you love it, set it free on all four walls.”

What décor trends are you ready to leave in the past?

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Comments (44)
  1. 1
    Jessica Camerata March 8, 2022 at 6:56 am

    How I wish I did not do an entirely white kitchen. Mine is small so I feel like it was a good move for my small apartment. But now I’m debating updating the backsplash or something fun!


    • Terri March 8, 2022 at 9:59 pm

      Consider stick on “tile” backsplash peel and stick. Fun and not permanent. Nice lift of color.

    • Sharon March 9, 2022 at 2:12 pm

      Google tile stickers with your dimensions for an inexpensive and temporary solution. I added a pattern to my white tile backsplash 14 years ago—that I still enjoy!.

      • Boymomx3 March 11, 2022 at 9:48 pm

        Wow does the stick on tile really stay put. I’m afraid it will start to peel after a few months next to the warm always steaming pasta boiling water.

  2. 2
    Mary Sue March 8, 2022 at 6:05 pm

    I don’t want to turn my back on the stove to access the sink and I don’t want to cook in the den or living area. Give me walls.and get rid of those hard tile floors.

  3. 3
    Deborah March 9, 2022 at 4:27 am

    I’d like to leave minimalism behind. Any room that looks like the aesthetic will be completely destroyed if you happen to set a colorful mug or book on the coffee table is TOO minimal. I do have to fight against my maximalist tendencies, but surely there’s a happy medium where a more sparse room still looks warm and lived in.
    I enjoyed this post and agree with most of the points, especially #1.

  4. 4
    Barbara Moore March 9, 2022 at 6:28 am

    I’ve read a similar approach to all white kitchens many times over the years. But white kitchens always come back. Every single time. Color in a kitchen might look fresh and new compared to all white every few years, but will hurt your eyes when the inevitable exit occurs (re: harvest gold, avocado green, yikes!) Investing in color in a kitchen should be limited to less expensive areas – certainly not cabinets because you will eventually need to change it. It will go out of style. Just about the time you finish paying for those bright blue cabinets.

    • Boymomx3 March 11, 2022 at 9:53 pm

      My kitchen is Soo small my new med brown floors look amazing. But now my 20year old solid hickory cabinets look awful yellow. Do white cabinets really stand the test of time because I’m so ready to commit to Painting mine & ditch the warm way to gold wood .

      • Michelle March 13, 2022 at 10:24 am

        Go for the white cabinets…they are always in style. You won’t regret it. Use towels, dishes, artwork for color. Maybe even a colorful backslash. But light and bright kitchens are always a winner.

        • Teresa March 24, 2022 at 10:40 am

          Great comment. I have open shelving and put lots of wood tones and a little color to warm it up.

    • M March 12, 2022 at 7:24 am

      I agree. I love my white kitchen and it’s easy to change out colorful towels, dishes, flowers, etc. to perk it up or change seasons.

    • LouEllen March 22, 2022 at 6:18 pm

      I couldn’t agree with you more!

  5. 5
    Paula March 9, 2022 at 8:36 am

    An even more appealing way to honor the environment would be to stop redecorating every time a trend comes around, or goes away. Find your own unique style that fits your personality and home. Then deep dive into THAT. My home has changed over the years, but the basics are still there. The colors that I love, the artwork I’ve collected over years that are markers on the trail of my life, photos, plants, objects that are infused with meaning. Yes, the carpets were changed, lighting updated (keeping some of the vintage fixtures), bath vanities updated, furniture replaced as needed, but the overall aesthetic has remained the same. And everyone who comes into my little house tells me what a nice home I have, how much they love it. It’s not about trends, it’s about authenticity, the story that a home can tell, and the feeling you have when you’re in it.

    • Shanta March 9, 2022 at 9:26 pm

      Yes!! Thank you!

    • Evelyn March 10, 2022 at 5:26 am

      Agree! Minor tweaking to keep things fresh and reflect our evolving esthetic can be very satisfying. While it’s wise to keep your home updated enough to maintain its value, chasing trends as they are declared “in” or “out” is neither sustainable nor financially sound.

    • Sabrina March 11, 2022 at 7:46 am

      Thank you for saying how I feel about my home. You are point on.

    • Betty March 11, 2022 at 4:03 pm

      Absolutely! I’ve done the same thing. Add a piece or swap with another room to room. But tossing everything you get tired of something is complete waste. Buy good.

    • Kristin ortiz March 11, 2022 at 4:19 pm

      Amen to that!

    • SeeBee March 11, 2022 at 8:41 pm

      Totally on the mark! A house should evoke the owners tastes and interests. Pieces from 25 years ago can still be cherished .As they say, quality never goes out of style.

    • Boymomx3 March 11, 2022 at 9:57 pm

      Amen! Yes, live in what you love and be happy in that!
      Best design advice.

    • Martie March 12, 2022 at 8:08 am


    • Markeeta March 12, 2022 at 9:13 am

      I totally agree a home should reflect the people that live in it.

    • Lucy March 12, 2022 at 1:57 pm

      Exactly! In Italy you choose a style that speaks of you and it stays, I mean you have to live outside the home too, no? We change artwork, sometimes textiles, but these so- called ‘trends’ are so damaging. Pleased to see antiques furniture is being bought once again. Mixing old with a little new or with modern architecture works beautifully.

    • Michelle March 13, 2022 at 10:25 am


    • Stacey Lindsay March 14, 2022 at 9:43 pm

      I love this, Paula! Totally agree.

  6. 6
    S.W. March 9, 2022 at 9:17 am

    My thought is if you like it and are happy with it, then who cares what others think. I mean it’s you and your family who has to live there. So, the opinion of others shouldn’t hold no bearing. Just my thought.
    Happy decorating!

  7. 7
    Charlotte Abbott March 10, 2022 at 1:31 pm

    TVs hung above the fireplace. And shame on me, because that is where MINE is. A large piece of art, a fancy mirror -ANYTHING but a TV! Sadly, because of wiring problems and other logistics, it is the only place it will fit. But just because it’s up there, doesn’t men I can’t HATE HATE HATE IT!

    • Mavis March 11, 2022 at 9:32 am

      Yes! to that!

    • Kathy schmidt March 11, 2022 at 4:46 pm

      Heard, nothing screams Tacky to me more than tv above the fireplace! Its the focal point of the room. I bought a mirrored chest and put the TV in it. K can close the doors when not in use.. Who really needs a huge TV dominating your space. Ugh..

    • Glenna March 12, 2022 at 10:36 am

      So agree.

      • TB March 12, 2022 at 3:14 pm

        Check out the company Crutchfield. There is a height, distance & tv size calculation that is helpful. High tv locations are not best for your viewing comfort.

  8. 8
    Brigitte March 10, 2022 at 8:05 pm

    Hello I am thinking of painting two walls and installing wall paper with white brick on the wall with the window. Does that sound like a good design look?

    • Martie March 12, 2022 at 8:14 am

      I think I would have to see a “before” picture on that before commenting. Can you be a little more specific please? Thanks!

  9. 9
    Kathleen March 11, 2022 at 7:49 am

    The green backslash with the white cabinets look awful.

  10. 10
    Jeff March 11, 2022 at 12:31 pm

    Gray interiors were every surface is the color of a cold cloudy winters day! A little gray goes a long way!

  11. 11
    Maureen Bujak March 11, 2022 at 1:54 pm

    I Love my accent walls; will never change, they look so good!

  12. 12
    Dee March 11, 2022 at 4:34 pm

    I have never been a fan of white/off white kitchens.. I’ve always recommended wood.
    Thanks for sharing this update ?

  13. 13
    Gussie Hall March 11, 2022 at 5:10 pm

    Well I let everyone talk me into doing my bathroom in grey and white tile and grey paint . Hate it . My living room kitchen,hallway is also grey with white cabinets and a big white and greynisland. I love my island. Hate the rest of my house.

  14. 14
    Kim Ishaug March 11, 2022 at 6:05 pm

    I love a real wood home… kitchen for sure.. I wish , and will have Knotty Alder cabs in a faint ashy stain.. so beautiful. I just moved across country.

    No white for me, and I’ve never been a fan of any of the above trends…

    • Kim Ishaug March 11, 2022 at 6:07 pm

      I do what I like and love what I do!!

  15. 15
    Julia March 11, 2022 at 10:25 pm

    The beauty of an all-white or black-and-white kitchen is that you can swap out the accent colors..

    Some accents : colorful silicone utensils, plants, a gumball machine, counter-top appliances, rugs, paint, peel-and-stick backsplash, wall or window accents, etc.

    So even tho the cabinets and floors are white, you can still have color coming out the yin yang.

  16. 16
    Jane March 14, 2022 at 6:20 pm

    I LOVE a white Kitchen. It may be going “out” but it ALWAYS comes back. I believe the key to a good white kitchen design is to keep the expensive parts of the design, cabinets and backsplash, white and neutral.
    I have a Bungalow. My cabinets are white, my backslpash is grey subway marble tile-No gold and grey grout, and my countertops are black granite with white veins . I brought color in with my bright yellow walls, antique Dark wood buffet with stained glass, antique dark wood table, and warm yellow marmolium flooring that has a black 3 inch inset. It is warm, inviting, and kind of period.

  17. 17
    Nancy Dotson April 1, 2022 at 11:08 am

    I personally love a white kitchen. When I remodeled my very very small condo kitchen white was the way to go. However, instead of a full backsplash, my contractor installed a five inch marble backsplash and we painted the wall between the backsplash and cabinets a gorgeous sage green, with the ceiling the same color, just a tone lighter. I also was able to find a vintage pendant light for over the sink in a ombre style yellow glass. The kitchen is full of light and the window box is full of herbs & plants to add to the green tone. So for me , white backdrop and fill in with accessories that have complimentary color. Great article