Why this has become the dirty word in design

Coco Chanel's famous quote, "Fashion changes, but style endures", may be something the fashion world lives by, but it's just as applicable to the world of interiors. While trend forecasting dominates magazine covers, many leading interior designers maintain they don't adhere to trends.

It's confusing, right? Why do interiors brands spend so much money forecasting trends and applying these predications to their product offerings? Why do lifestyle publications print stories about the latest trends in tiles, kitchens, flooring?

The problem lies not with changing trends, this should keep our interiors looking fresh and revitalised, but how we apply the trends. This is precisely why our homes are appearing, dare I say it, generic.

Part of the issue may be our increasing accessibility to beloved image resources such as Pinterest and Instagram. I love these apps and I refer to them a lot, but I think we are drawn to what we know, and what we know is what we see on repeat. It is often too easy for us to throw together spaces that are carbon copies of homewares catalogues, rather than thinking creatively.

Then there is the fact that products are becoming more accessible thanks to mass production and distribution; because we can pick up a new $25 bar stool from a chain retailer means we need not think twice before changing things up. We can do it with little consideration and even less financial outlay. It's almost too easy.

So how do you break the mould?

Style your home over time

Feeling pressured to deck out your newly built or renovated property all in one hit takes the enjoyment out of the process and is usually reflected in the end result.

Allow time to contemplate purchases by shopping while travelling, scrolling through Gumtree or visiting flea markets on a Sunday morning. There's so much delight to be had by nabbing an obscure vintage mirror for the bathroom or old rattan rocking chair for your sitting room.

Recycle, re-purpose, reuse

Scour markets and second-hand stores and find a place in your home for the old and preloved. We recently renovated our house and mixed our new purchases in with some preloved treasures. The two vintage blue velvet dining chairs that I bought years ago from the RSPCA now act as bedside tables for our children.

I also created a gallery wall of art pieces, new and old, that I've had for years, and I've positioned an antique daybed at the foot of our master bed.

Expand your horizons

Pinterest and Instagram are brilliant design resources, but unless you're seeking inspiration from a diverse range of design influencers/designers/retailers, your feed will become stale.

Think global and seek out what is happening in design blogs and magazines from overseas (try Paris, Morocco, London, New York). Australia has a rich design community but we are only one little corner of the world and there is so much more to see.

This story Why this has become the dirty word in design first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.