Cringe-Worthy Home Design Fails from the 80s

Trista - October 29, 2022

There’s Something Fishy About This Ugly 80s Design Trend 

Fish were the coolest pets to have in your home in the 80s. You could create interesting and vibrant aquariums, which soon became popular decor features. You didn’t need to keep your fish in a small tank in your room. You could really create a focal point of this in your home. Who would have thought that an aquarium would become the centerpiece of a room? This ’80s home design was super popular for bachelors. Of course, you’d have everyone swooning over your glowing tank in the living area. 

On the downside, it was an incredibly expensive piece of decor as you had to maintain it obviously. It wasn’t just a painting that would be fine on its own. You had to feed the fish, clean the tank, and ensure oxygen levels were right. There would have been nothing worse than having a filthy fish tank with belly-up fish while having visitors over. Let’s keep this as a trend, but only if you are ready for all the responsibilities that come along with it. 


This Is An Explosion Of All The Terrible Trends of the 80s

Earlier, we shared about the terrible draping trend from the 80s, as well as their poor choice in carpets and not forgetting the wicker furniture. Oh wait, we forgot to mention the floral print was everywhere too. But what if you put all of this together in one room? It’s an explosion of all the home design fails from the 80s, and we cannot stand to look at it any longer! 

Sunrooms were a big trend, so they decided to decorate this room with all the other horrible trends from the 80s. This type of space could be so beautiful, but they’ve completely messed up the design with too many design features in one space. An area like this should be light and bright, but instead, you’re overwhelmed by pattern, print, and texture.


The Total Opposite Of The Heavy Drapery of the 80s 

Aside from the heavy drapery of the 80s, they also loved the then-modern vertical blinds. If you had a home that was considered “modern” and contemporary, you would have found vertical blinds all over the house. They used to break every five minutes but having this trend in your home was worth it. The only time we see these blinds nowadays is in office buildings! 

Compared to heavy drapery, the space feels larger and brighter instead of being weighed down by excessive curtains and heavy fabrics. There are so many amazing blinds we have access to these days, so let’s leave this design to the offices stuck in the 80s. 


We Think Memphis Design Was A Design Fail 

This ugly 80s design fail is “Memphis Design.” We saw this colorful geometric pattern all over houses in the 80s. Did you know that this style actually originated in Italy? This ’80s home style was very popular and became a booming trend. Nevertheless, it came to an end after only seven years! People then began to move away from these bright and bold designs. 

The furniture design was totally out there and strange – from chairs to coffee tables and even bizarre and geometric bookcases. One of these pieces would have made a statement, but an entire room full of them was a definite design failure. 


The Resurrection of Clear Furniture 

Art Deco initially inspired the trend of clear furniture. Don’t get us wrong, now. Art Deco was a beautiful era for interior design, but we can’t say the same for the 80s interpretation of this period. Everything was clear topped when it came to tables – can you imagine how often you would need to wipe down those surfaces for fingerprints? 

Clear furniture took on a new life in the 80s and became essential to every home. If you didn’t have a coffee table, you definitely had the side tables you were terrified of breaking, especially when you were running around the home, or your children were. 

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We Hope Never To See White Laminate Again!

Gross white laminate was everywhere in homes of the 80s! It was on the counters, on the floor, and it seems like you couldn’t look anywhere without it creeping in. It was an all-purpose material that was incredibly popular in home design and building. This material did not age well. Discoloration or imperfections were always when homeowners tried to scrub this surface over the years. Thank goodness we’ve moved on to having beautiful tiles and marble counters in our homes. 

White laminate looked incredibly cheap, and we don’t know how families from the 80s thought this was a good idea to have installed in their homes. Marble and even fake marble are much better looking (and better quality), which will stand the test of time. You never hear someone complaining about their marble countertop, but you certainly would hear complaints from someone who had a white laminate flooring or counter put into their home.