Home Designs That Scream that Someone Has “Basic” Taste

Shannon Quinn - September 14, 2021

Most people like to think that they could be an interior designer just like the people they see on HGTV. However, it actually takes a lot of skill and education to pull off creating a well-designed home. Many of you out there might have fallen victim to being basic. Yes, you. Sorry to tell you, but if you have any of the following home designs, it means that you’re totally basic. That doesn’t mean it’s bad, per say, but it just means you’re not as original and design savvy as you once believed.

One of the signs of being a basic chick is having the coffee bar. Credit: Shutterstock

30. A Coffee Bar in the Kitchen

We get it. You love coffee, and pumpkin spice gives you life in the fall. Some people try to turn this into a personality trait. Remember that coffee is merely a substance to give you caffeine in the morning to make a work day slightly more bearable. It doesn’t have to be a big deal. A regular coffee machine, or even a drip-pour system should be enough to satisfy most coffee drinkers.

However, there are some people who go above and beyond with their coffee bars. They have a Keurig or a Nespresso machine with a hundred different flavors. Of course, there are people who refuse to drink anything except Starbucks. There are always options for sugar, cream, and adorable stirring sticks. Some people even go one step further and decorate their coffee bar with mugs to match the seasons.

This entire kitchen design is based around incorporating rose gold. Credit: Shutterstock

29. Rose Gold Everything

For the past few years, there has been a growing trend in rose gold or copper products. It’s especially popular in kitchen and bathroom designs. You can buy a faucet, kitchen appliances, and accessories all in rose gold. And if they don’t make it in rose gold, there’s guaranteed to be a way to coat it in the color, somehow. Even Apple has come out with rose gold laptops, phones, and iPads. There are matching accessories that you can have around your house.

I’ll admit that I am one of the basic chicks who is totally guilty of doing this. But having a rose gold Apple product goes hand-in-hand with going to Starbucks. It’s so typical and girly. The only way around this trend is to simply accept the fact that not everything has to be rose gold. And a few years from now, there will surely be a shift when it’s no longer as popular as it once was. Buying products in black is usually the safest bet, because it’s sleek and never goes out of style.

A lot of people buy a record player and then never actually use it. Credit: Shutterstock

28. That Trendy Record Player You Never Use

Hipsters out there can relate to the trendy record player that we always seemed to see in photos of cool apartments. It doesn’t matter if listening to music is free online, or that vinyl records are expensive and antiquated. We just love the idea of having a record player in our homes. Even celebrity house tours like with Kendall Jenner feature a record player, and it makes our hearts swoon to think about listening to a great vinyl.

In reality, most people never use their record players once they have one. It collects dust, and it’s nearly impossible to resell later, unless it’s a limited edition. So if you’re considering getting one for your apartment, maybe skip the purchase. It’s much better to buy something like Amazon Alexa that will play a large library of digital music through voice commands.

Nearly every home in America has a few inspirational signs like this. Credit: Shutterstock

27. Inspirational Signs From the Craft Store

Every single craft store on the planet has signs that say something along the lines of; “Home is Where the Heart Is”. While it may look cute hanging on the wall, just know that it’s also hanging in a thousand other homes across America. Dollar Tree also has signs that they sell, and it changes with the seasons.

We’re not saying that all signs are bad in general. They’re just basic. But if you want to pick something more original, try looking for one that’s limited to a particular season, but may fit in with your decor. For example, Michaels Crafts seem to swap out their decorative signs on a regular basis. Or, you could decide to make your own so that it’s one of a kind.

Most basic chicks have a house full of bath and body works products. Credit: Shutterstock

26. A Home Full of Bath and Body Works

There is something about Bath and Body Works that just reels in the basic chicks. Yes, their products smell amazing. And it’s a nice way to make a space more inviting if you’re having guests over for a special occasion. But for the most part, their products are overpriced. For example, it’s possible to buy scented foaming hand soap for $1 at Dollar Tree instead of $7 at Bath and Body Works. There is absolutely no need to spend so much money on products that smell good, and yet women continue to do it anyway.

Of course, this goes far beyond candles. Bath and Body Works sells candle holders, scented lights called “wallflowers” that plug into the wall, and soap dispensers. At the end of each season, they also sell some of their display pieces like vases that you can use to decorate your home. They want to sell you an entire ambiance of living in a Bath and Body Works for your home. And it’s also a perfect go-to gift for anyone to buy on your birthday, so you might not even be the one purchasing the products that end up around your house.

Many men transform apart of their home into a ‘man cave’ for all of their stuff. Credit: Shutterstock

25. A Man Cave

When men buy a house, they often dream of having a finished basement transformed into their “man cave” filled with things they enjoy. This could be dedicated to sports, video games, a home bar, or board games. It’s not enough to simply enjoy your hobbies occasionally in some other room of the house.

Eventually, the man cave will be taken over by kids. They’ll love to have their friends over and show them how cool their dad’s hobby is. It will no longer become a haven for watching the football game with the bros, and instead it will be the best place for your kids to host their High School parties on the weekend.

Back in the 90’s, wallpaper borders were popular in kitchens. Credit: Bob Vila

24. A Wallpaper Border

Back in the 1990’s, it was all the rage to put up a wallpaper border along the ceiling. Many of us might remember having it in our parent’s house, especially in the kitchen or bedroom. But if you’re living in the 2020’s and the wallpaper border is still there, it means you’re basic. And you’ve given up on trying to make your house look cute at all!

Thankfully, removing the wallpaper border should be easy. It may leave some residue or glue behind, but it’s completely removable, especially if you follow a tutorial online. And it’s nothing that a new coat of paint can’t fix. Try to pick a color that will help make the room feel more light and open, like a shade of beige. Or, find an accent wall color to help give it more dimension.

So many people convert outdoor garden sheds into office space. Credit: Shutterstock

23. A She Shed

Same as the Man Cave, the term “She Shed” describes a space where a woman can call her own. She might use the room for crafting, or as an office space for her to work from home. More often than not, the She Shed gets taken over by the kids at some point. The crafts will ultimately be used for school projects. Kids will beg for a space to do their homework to get away from their annoying siblings. Or, the young kids will want to play house in the fully renovated shed in the backyard.

Busy moms might not even find the time to relax in their shed, even if it’s self care Sunday. The idea seems blissful when you think about it, but those spaces usually end up being converted into something different later on. If you can turn it into an AirBnB, though, it just might be a good idea for investment purposes.

Too much floral on top of floral looks a bit basic. Credit: Shutterstock

22. Floral Everything

A few years ago, there was an aesthetic trend called “Grandmacore” that was very popular. It was basically the idea of making your home look like it was actually your grandmother’s house. This usually involved using lots, and lots of florals. Grandmacore had its moment, but it’s essentially done now. So if your home still looks like the host is going to offer you a Werther’s Original while they do some knitting, it might be best for you to switch things up.

With this being said, florals aren’t dead. You can still have florals in your house and make it look classy. The problem happens when you have floral on top of floral. Try to stick with just one or two floral patterns per room, and choose solid colors for everything else. Once you make that small change, there is a huge difference in how a room looks.

If you try a lot of home hacks, a few of them will end up as major failures. Credit: Shutterstock

21. All Of Those DIY Hack Fails

If you’re a fan of accounts like 5 Minute Crafts and Blossom, then you’re familiar with all of their clever DIY tips and tricks. Some of you out there might even rush to the craft store to try to assemble your own versions of what you’ve seen on TikTok. But if you’re doing that, you’re pretty basic. Is your apartment full of DIY fails? That’s classic.

Keep in mind that most of what you see on these crafting channels are fake. YouTube personalities like Safiya Nygaard have made a career out of testing these crafts to see if they’re actually real or not. So if you want to get that fix without actually putting in any of the work, I suggest going over to her YouTube channel to watch those instead. It’ll save you a lot of money in the long run.

Posters are meant to be disposable, like these advertisements. Credit: Shutterstock

20. Posters on the Wall

Tacking posters on the wall is normal if you’re a teenager, or when you’re trying to decorate a college dorm. But if you are a grown adult who is still taping a large piece of paper on the wall and calling it art, you’re basic. It’s time to ditch the movie posters and your favorite pop band. Go for real art, next time. If you can get a poster into a frame, that’s slightly more acceptable. However, the subject matters so much more. A poster of a celebrity is still basic, whether it’s framed or not.

Certain art prints or photographs still look classy, and there’s nothing wrong with having those framed and arranged around your home. However, you should still be careful with only having posters around the house. Aesthetically speaking, it’s better to have a mixture of canvas art and pieces that have some sort of texture to them. If you look at a house in a magazine, you’ll see that there is always a variety in the art.

Too much white in a home can be boring and basic. Credit: Shutterstock

19. Whites and Neutrals

When you watch shows like Dream Home Makeover on Netflix or look through the instagram account of Amber Interiors, you’ll notice one thing they both have in common: Neutrals. Almost everything in their home designs is a shade of white or beige. Because of this, women across the world have begun to decorate their homes in neutral shades as well.

Decorating your home in neutral colors can be soothing, and it’s easy to match things at the store once you get your basic color palette. But it also gets boring. And if your kids spill something on your white couch, it’s done for. Instead of copying everything you see on a TV show, consider blending in some color too. Or, at least pick a practical furniture color if you have kids.

If your entire home is decorated in farmhouse, you’re most likely a basic chick. Credit: Shutterstock

18. Farmhouse

After Fixer Upper aired on HGTV, nearly everyone was eager to decorate their home to look like it was designed by Joanna Gaines. Millions of kitchens across the world were suddenly decorated in the farmhouse theme, even if they lived in the middle of the city. Towels with chickens, farmer’s market signs, and shiplap walls are just a few things that might indicate that you’re a basic farmhouse lover.

Eventually, the trend grew old. Even Joanna Gaines herself has moved on from farmhouse style, if you watch her new season of Fixer Upper on the Magnolia Network. If you live in the country, there’s nothing wrong with embracing that. However, if you only decorated your home in the farmhouse style because you were jumping on a bandwagon, it may be time to consider a change.

If your house is full of Ikea furniture, you may want to check yourself before it gets out of hand.Credit: Shutterstock

17. Ikea Everything

Nothing says basic more than Ikea. Yes, we know that Ikea is the cheapest place to buy furniture. But you should never have so much of it that your home looks like you bought the entire catalogue. If you haven’t updated your furniture since college, you’ve fallen victim to being a totally basic dude or chick.

Sure, it’s fine to have a few pieces from Ikea. After all, it’s the most affordable place to go. And you can’t help if you’re on a budget. But start to look at your space with a critical eye, and ask yourself if your apartment looks identical to a million other apartments. It doesn’t have to be expensive to update, either. Even swapping out something from the thrift store could look better than having a carbon copy of someone else’s place.

Dollar Tree sells thousands of different cheap crafts and knick knacks for your home. Credit: Shutterstock

16. Dollar Tree Crafts

Don’t get us wrong. We love a good Dollar Tree craft. In fact, we have an entire list dedicated to it here at Home Addict. However, it’s easy to get out of hand. Some people make Dollar Tree crafts every single weekend, and they can’t help but try everything they see on the Internet. So their entire home ends up being filled with these half-hearted creations that should have never seen the light of days.

Remember that sometimes, it’s okay to do a craft for the sake of relieving stress. But it’s not always necessary to put the finished product on display. Try to make an executive decision in your home about what crafts need to go. Obviously, this can be a difficult thing to do, because it means throwing away hours of work. But if you want to be less basic, try to let go of the sentimental attachment and toss the items that look cheap and tacky.

Every basic chick loves to have a gallery wall filled with family portraits and baby pictures. Credit: Shutterstock

15. A Gallery Wall of Family Photos

One of the first things women love to do when they move into a new house or apartment is to create a gallery wall of their family and friends. This way, when someone comes over, they know that you do, in fact, have a social life. Sometimes they will go one step further and make sure all of the photographs are in black and white, which makes it look a bit more sophisticated….But still basic.

Bonus points if you have school pictures hanging of your kids. It’s not enough to see their faces every day in real life, right? Their image must be plastered on the wall for everyone to see. Obviously, it’s because the more photos you have of your kids, the more you love them, right? Jokes aside, there’s nothing wrong with family photos, but it truly is basic.

One of the most popular plants nowadays is the fiddle fig tree. Credit: Shutterstock

14. A Fiddle Fig Tree

If you watch Queer Eye, you might notice a trend with the potted plants in the room. Bobby Berk almost always chooses a fiddle fig tree. Same goes with Fixer Upper and nearly every other series you’ll watch on HGTV. That’s because it’s one of the trendiest plants of the 2020’s. So you see it absolutely everywhere. And if you don’t like to take care of living things, there are plenty of fake fiddle fig trees available, too.

The reason why it is so basic is because every boho chic girl out there has one. If you buy a live tree, they only cost around $20 at Home Depot or your local garden center. However, it takes years for these plants to grow big enough to look like what you see on TV. Remember- it’s a tree. This means that you need a green thumb and consistency in order to keep the fiddle fig alive long enough to look like what you see on TV.

White subway tiles are so classic, they’re actually basic. Credit: Shutterstock

13. Subway Tiles

Using subway tiles in your kitchen is one of those timeless, classic looks that almost never gets old. If you do a good job, it should be a clean, tasteful backdrop for your kitchen. However, that doesn’t make it any less basic. It’s been overdone so many times, there is even a peel-and-stick version of fake subway tiles sold at Dollar Tree.

Interior designers at House of Valentina recommend trying to switch things up with your subway tile. For example, instead of solid white, you could choose marble instead. Or, try to figure out an interesting way to use the tile instead of going with your standard straight lines above the kitchen sink.

Minimalist homes have almost nothing in them besides the bare essentials. Credit: Shutterstock

12. Extreme Minimalism

After the 2008 financial crisis, people became really interested in minimalism. There was even a popular Ted Talk with over 4 million views on why it’s better to own fewer things and live a minimalist lifestyle. Scandinavian design also became popular, especially with the growing number of Ikea locations opening up across the US. Suddenly, everyone was getting rid of knick knacks and painting their walls white. Having an empty house became something to be proud of.

But at this point, if you hear someone say “I’m a minimalist”, that’s pretty basic. Enough years have gone by where people have begun to realize that it’s okay to be a little bit of a maximalist, too. Some people will make the mistake of tearing everything down during a home renovation, even if it was details that made the home interesting. So before you immediately go for a minimalist style, ask yourself it it’s truly the best option.

Light wood, or blonde wood, has been trendy for years now. Credit: Shutterstock

11. Blond Wood Furniture

Over the past few years, blonde or bleached wood furniture has become a huge trend. This is especially true for anyone who’s trying to decorate their home to look bohemian. It started out in high end magazines, and now it’s trickled down to the likes of Walmart and Target. So while it might look beachy and trendy, it’s still very basic.

The real trouble happens when you only have blonde wood furniture throughout the entire house. It’s even worse if the furniture matches the floors. When you have the same color scheme throughout a design, it becomes very boring and repetitive. If your furniture looks like it’s all blending together, it might be a sign that it’s time to mix things up. Luckily, this is easy to do with real wood. If you’re feeling brave, all you need to do is sand it down and stain it to a darker color.

Wicker and rattan is trendy, and a sign that you’re basic. Credit: Shutterstock

10. Wicker and Rattan Furniture

I’ll fully admit that I’m guilty of this next one. (But I also admit to being basic.) It’s the comeback of wicker and rattan furniture. Coupled together with blonde furniture, rattan gives a home a coastal and bohemian vibe. You can walk into any Urban Outfitters or Target in the country and see plenty of rattan options. The trend originated back in the 1960’s and 70’s during the hippie era.

These furniture pieces are handmade from natural materials, which can mean that they last a lifetime. You can still find vintage pieces that have stood the test of time. However, when treated poorly, rattan can begin to chip and fall apart. It often begins to have a disposable look to it, as if it’s not meant to last forever. On top of that, the proportions of pieces are often too small for a space. It’s fine to use a few wicker and rattan pieces in a well-curated home, but just be careful not to go overboard.

This kitchen and living room combination is an open concept space. Credit: Shutterstock

9. Open Concept

For the past few years, nearly every home makeover TV show tears down walls so that a home can become an “open concept” living space. It’s usually from the kitchen to the living room, so that it’s one large area meant for multiple purposes. This idea was great when people were coming home from work and entertaining guests. However, once the pandemic hit, it became an entirely different story.

Now, if your home is “open concept”, there is almost no way to escape one another during quarantine. In some houses, the home office space is shared with the kid’s homeschooling place, as well as the kitchen and the living room. Throughout history, homes were built with multiple rooms with walls to help create a designated quarantine space for family members. So there’s a good chance that moving forward, people are no longer going to want that open concept. They would rather have more spaces for peace and quiet.

The more casual furniture is, the sloppier it tends to be. Credit: Shutterstock

8. Ultra Casual Furniture

In the year 2020, everyone was working from home. Life was all about working in your pajamas and lounging on the couch. Furniture trends over the past few years have been similar as well, like the famous Cloud Couch and all of the knock-off versions that exist out there. There’s nothing wrong with wanting a comfortable couch. But it’s still pretty basic. It’s something that almost everyone goes after.

We’re not saying that you should choose a couch that’s uncomfortable. No one wants that. However, you should maybe go with something that looks a bit more polished than the comfortable monster couch you found at Goodwill. Dress yourself up again, and also dress up your space to reflect a more put-together look.

Fewer people have the desire to live in a tiny house than they did just a few years ago. Credit: Shutterstock

7. Tiny Houses

Over the past few years, there was a big uptick in Millennials deciding to try out “van life”, or build a tiny house on a small piece of property. It became so common, that simply mentioning that you’ve considered that life was truly basic. But this is yet another trend that has become unreasonable during the pandemic. There’s a very good reason why the housing market boomed during this time. People need bigger spaces.

The idea of living in a tiny house or a van is that you really only use that space to sleep and occasionally cook meals. And the rest of your time is spent at work, or roaming some beautiful national park on the weekends. But during the pandemic, there was a lot that people could no longer do. And with two people working from home in a tiny house, they probably found themselves going inside while being on top of one another.

Smeg products are incredibly popular in the United Kingdom. Credit: Shutterstock

6. Overdoing It With Name Brand Products

For some people out there, they get too caught up in brand loyalty. For example, once they get a Smeg toaster, they just have to get the refrigerator and coffee maker, too. In the UK, if you walk into someone’s kitchen and see that it’s full of Smeg, that’s pretty basic. Here in the US, we have a similar phenomenon. Only with us here in the United States, it could be the obsession with only using Kitchenaid products.

It’s not necessary to have everything the same, even if you’re normally a perfectionist who needs to complete something once you start. In fact, someone might be more likely to roll their eyes at how basic you are, rather than be impressed at your expensive collection. Remember that it’s okay to mix and match the products and appliances. Sometimes it makes sense to match colors, so that every appliance in your kitchen looks cohesive. However, once you give yourself the high standard that it must be a certain brand, that’s when things can get costly.

Nearly every woman in American wishes they could have a standing mixer. Credit: Shutterstock

5. The Kitchenaid Stand Mixer

In the last post, we talked about being basic with name brand appliances. One of the biggest culprits of that here in the US is the Kitchenaid Stand Mixer. For some reason, that’s like the ultimate goal for housewives to own one of these things. Every single kitchen renovation on HGTV also includes a colorful Kitchenaid on the countertop.

For some people, a standing mixer is truly useful, especially if you bake on a regular basis. There are certain recipes where it becomes significantly more difficult to get the job done if you’re trying to mix by hand. But for the most part, a lot of recipes can be accomplished by mixing with a cheaper hand mixer. Or, of course, mixing with a whisk or spoon. You can save yourself the $400 and still make chocolate chip cookies, I promise you.

Shiplap was popular for so long, it has now become a sign of being a basic chick. Credit: Shutterstock

4. Shiplap Walls

When you watch TV shows on HGTV like Fixer Upper, the host almost always goes for shiplap on the walls. This is especially true if it’s a farmhouse theme. But according to Insider, that’s actually one of the trends that we’re seeing less of in 2021. So if you’ve spent the money to install shiplap in your living room, you could soon be seen as being a basic hardcore trend-follower.

Once the shiplap is up, there is really no going back. You might as well keep it up for now. So we’re not suggesting that you should take this down. But if you’ve been on the fence about getting it installed in your home, you might want to skip it. Instead of shiplap, consider custom molding that is more likely to stand the test of time.

Mid Century modern pieces in your home may be a sign that you’re a basic chick. Credit: Shutterstock

3. Mid-Century Modern Furniture

If you were a fan of Mad Men, you might have fallen into the trend of buying Mid-Century Modern furniture for your house. Some people even spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on genuine vintage furniture. Stores like Ikea sell replicas of the style, and it has become incredibly common to see it in almost everyone’s home. It doesn’t matter if the overall home design isn’t even mid century modern to begin with. People just love to add pieces in.

This has become such a common style, it’s reached the point of being basic. If you choose to put Mid Century Modern furniture in your house, it’s probably because you’ve been swooning over images you saw in magazines, and you just had to have it. But if you insist on moving forward with the style, at least browse your local thrift stores first before spending a fortune on the furniture. You might be surprised to find what you’re looking for at a fraction of the price.

If your kitchen cabinet looks like it should be a Starbucks display, you have a problem. Credit: Shutterstock

2. A Starbucks Mug Collection

We have already mentioned Starbucks multiple times on this list, because it’s one of the ultimate signs that you’re a basic chick. And we’ve already mentioned the obligatory coffee bar that you may or may not have in your kitchen already. Another sign of true basic behavior is to collect those limited edition Starbucks coffee mugs.

It doesn’t matter if you can buy a similar mug from the dollar store. Because what really matters is that the Starbucks logo is plastered on the cup. You want everyone to know how much you love Starbucks, even if they’re eating soup or drinking a glass of milk. All jokes aside, Starbucks really does create high-quality cups and mugs. But at the end of the day, they’re totally unnecessary.

Kinfolk is one of the most popular magazine and coffee table book publications. Credit: Shutterstock

1. Fashionable Coffee Table Books

If you look at any Instagram fashionista, you’ll see that they decorate their homes with fashion themed coffee table books. It doesn’t matter if they’re around $100 like the Tom Ford book. These girls just have to have it. So if this describes you, it very well may be that you’ve become a basic chick.

While there is nothing inherently wrong with coffee table books, keep in mind that you don’t have to buy the most expensive volumes. Just because you see Kinfolk in every magazine doesn’t mean it needs to be on your shelf, too. Some people will even go to the dollar store, buy a coffee table book, and flip the cover inside-out so that they just have a plain white book sitting on their shelf. It doesn’t have to cost a lot of money to look cute.