How to Determine If a Home Trend Will Stand the Test of Time

Plus, tricks for making sure your style has staying power.

With so much information at our fingertips, staying on top of what’s happening in the home space is easier than ever. But it can also get a little noisy. So how can you determine what of the moment trends are worth paying attention to? Consider it advice, says Carly Sioux of No Era Design.

“You pay attention to the conversation, make your own assessments, and keep the parts that resonate with you and leave the rest behind,” she suggests. “Trends are merely conversations, and we don’t have to participate in every dialogue.” 

jeweled toned velvet furniture in living room with oval shaped coffee table

Amy Youngblood, principal designer of Amy Youndblood Interiors,  says she often sees clients going all-in on trendier pieces for the sake of being first on the scene. “If it makes you happy, of course, go for it, but if it’s just to follow trends, be careful with what you’re purchasing.” 

Always go for what you want and consistently choose quality, form, and function. If you follow this guideline, you’ll never grow tired of the pieces you invest in.

So what should you do when a trend speaks to you? It’s all about the mix, says Sioux. Start with a foundation of classic pieces, then allow your textiles, art, and accessories to swing your look toward a certain trend or aesthetic. “Most importantly, always go for what you want and consistently choose quality, form, and function,” Sioux advises. “If you follow this guideline, you’ll never grow tired of the pieces you invest in.”

living room with fire place and black wall

1. Know Your Style

The first step in finding trends that have the potential to stand the test of time is developing your own design confidence, and the best way to do that is by identifying your personal style. “Fashion is fleeting, but style is timeless and iconic,” says Sioux. “When choosing furnishings, really consider how well these objects will function withyour lifestyle, and if they bring you joy to look at.” 

She urges clients to disregard whether or not their personal style is trending, but instead, stay true to what they love and bring it to life accordingly in their space. “Making a style all your own is what gives it a timeless quality.” she says.

Youngblood also encourages clients to do what they love, regardless of whether it’s trending. “Of course, we will give our input, but our overall goal is for the client to be happy in their space.” 

2. Stick with Nature

If the trend in question has a tie to nature, whether in color, texture, or material, consider yourself on solid ground. According to Sioux, nature is always relevant in the home design world. “Sometimes it’s as simple as incorporating natural and organic materials like wood, stone, marble, and textiles into your design,” she says. “At the moment, it’s all about sustainability and the need to preserve and protect our environment by repurposing vintage furnishings, or choosing responsible manufacturers that don’t overuse materials that pollute or deplete our ecosystem.”

When trends are grounded in these beliefs or even just incorporate an element of earthiness, they instantly carry more weight, which can wind up giving them greater longevity. “Humanity’s fascination with nature, connecting to it and incorporating it into our homes and interior spaces, is a phenomenon that I don’t think will go away anytime soon,” says Sioux. 

kitchen with white subway tile with wood and gold open shelves

3. Keep It Simple

Some trends have lasting appeal from the start. April Gandy, principal designer at Alluring Designs Chicago, says there’s one rule of thumb that many of these sustaining styles have in common. “The simpler the style, the longer it will last,” she says. Case in point, subway tile. Gandy points to the timeless material as one that is equally at home in a historic dwelling or a new build. It comes to life with various colors, materials, and patterns, but remains a timeless look no matter where and how it’s put to use. 

4. Mix and Match

No matter how effortless or stunning a decor trend might be, it can quickly find itself in the overdone category if it isn’t complemented by its environment. “When timeless pieces are surrounded by too many overly trendy pieces, it makes even the most classic piece look outdated,” says Gandy. “Adding trends that are really bold subtly can help the timeless pieces stand out more.”

To keep of-the-moment items from feeling instantly dated and, likewise, to keep more classic pieces feeling fresh, consider a mix-and-match approach. Youngblood puts this strategy to use by finding trendy pieces that play nicely with other interior styles. “That way, if your home changes over time, those pieces will be likely to still work,” she says. 

5. Do Your Research

Gandy says one of the biggest mistakes she sees clients make with trends is simply taking it too far. For example, investing a lot of money in said trend and incorporating it in multiple rooms can be too much. “Going overboard with a trend will only cost you more money in the long run to modernize your space later.”

Instead, she says to be mindful of where you place your investment and how quickly you switch things up. Doing research on the front end, both from a financial perspective and one that relates to your own introspection when it comes to your design desires, can save you over time. 

Patricia Shannon