If you’re unfamiliar with chintz fabric, it’s a calico fabric that has been woodblock printed, painted, or stained. They usually have bright floral patterns on a typically white background. It started in India but quickly spread throughout Europe, where cheap imitations were made to make them more affordable to the poorer classes. Many of today’s chintz fabrics are still bright and colorful but can look dated compared to everything else in the room. And the trend was to cover everything in the same chintz fabric, which can make a room quite overwhelming to walk into.
Gingham was a popular fabric choice back in the 90s, and it gave any home a nice country feel. But going overboard with it can make it feel like you’re like a picnic bonanza, and that can come across as cheap and tacky. One small trim with gingham might be enough, but people were putting it everywhere, from curtains to ceilings to rugs. Because of that, no one can look at gingham the same way ever again, which has made it a forbidden fabric.
The 90s were rich with floral prints on just about everything, and the unique style of adding petals to all parts of your decor is a great way to bring nature indoors. Some people would love the bold color aesthetic. But to be honest, this looks a bit forced and unnatural. If you go with bold floral prints, maybe just try for a splash of it here or there. If you’re wanting florals to be the center of a room, maybe go with a softer pattern.
In the 90s, if you wanted a way to make your walls look nice without having to put up wallpaper or paint the whole thing, stencils were the way to go. You just stuck them to whichever part of your wall you wanted to dress up, get your best acrylic paints, and paint away. Done right, stencils can look marvelous around a doorway or just along the border of the baseboard for an added touch that is charming and whimsical. And if you get tired of it, it’s not a big job to cover up with some extra house point or wipe away with a bit of rubbing alcohol.
All White Kitchens Have Been Making a Huge Comeback
White kitchens can look sleek and clean and give a minimalistic feel. However, when it comes to messes, we all know that a room that is nothing but white walls, floors, and counters can become dirty much faster since everything shows up against white. That doesn’t stop anyone from designing their kitchen this way, though. It was popular in the 90s, right before bold colors became popular. We have started to notice, as well, that this trend is beginning to come back.
Nowadays, not many homes have a landline anymore. Everyone seems to have a cell phone and count it as their primary phone. While some still have flip phones, most people now have phones with a touch screen that looks sleek and thin and can easily be carried in a pocket. In the 90s, however, landlines were how you contacted your friends. And we’re not just talking about boring white phones attached to the wall. People were talking about cheeseburgers and footballs. Yes, you heard that right! Phones shaped like other fun things were all the rage. Can you imagine seeing someone pull out a cheeseburger from their pocket and make a phone call on it? Thank goodness this trend stayed in the 90s.
We all like the feel of plush carpet under our feet, but did you ever stop to think about how many germs, crumbs, and even toenails could be stuck in the carpet you have in your home? In the 90s, the wall-to-wall carpet was a big deal. Sometimes you would even find a bathroom completely covered instead of tile like you will find in most bathrooms nowadays. Talk about bacteria. Think about all the gross things that could be trapped in that carpet from prior residents’, and we used to roll around on it without a care in the world. Some carpet in a home is nice and can make it seem warm and inviting, but we think that the ‘put carpet in every single floor space possible’ trend should never come back.
When we think inflatable, we’re thinking floaties for the pool, beach, or maybe even a bounce house. Nowadays, we don’t think about a chair or couch to lounge on. But that’s exactly what we did in the 90s. Inflatable furniture was all the rage; you could get it in any shade, size, and even with father or glitter inside. Imagine having to blow up your chair because it was a bit deflated. Yup, we did that, too. Thank goodness we figured out that that didn’t seem very efficient. Because not only were they bulky, and even kind of ugly, but on hot days we were sticking to them, having to peel ourselves off of them when we went to stand up. We think we will stick with more of the traditional furniture stores have to offer us now.
Not as many homes these days have wallpaper lining their walls. They’ve painted a single color, with maybe some picture frames, posters, or other decor hanging on them. Wallpaper was prominent in the 90s, just like everything else on this list. You could get it in bright and bold hues, with patterns or even animals printed on them. It just seems easier to paint your walls a single color, especially since a solid color will go with almost any look of the room. Wallpaper may have faded out as the 90s disappeared, but it seems to be coming back in some homes. As long as it goes with the rest of the decor or looks of the room, it can still look nice.
If you were living in the 90s, there is a good chance you owned an extensive CD collection. The fun part of all this was trying to figure out how you would store your discs. That’s where CD racks came in. The more popular ones at the time seemed to be the ones that were either spiraling or shaped a bit different than what we see nowadays, if at all. You could put them into a zip-up case, but then you wouldn’t be able to put your collection on display for all your friends to see. We had fun trying to figure out where our spiral-shaped racks would go in our room. We wonder if these would still be a thing if MP3 players, iPods, and such weren’t invented.
Beige was all the rage in the 90s, from beige carpets to the walls and furniture. While it’s a neutral shade, it can also be a little bland. We’re not saying that this color is terrible, but we are saying that not every single thing in the home needs to be this shade. Thankfully, we have started to add more color to our house, making it a bit more lively and bright. Of course, you are more than welcome to keep this trend going, but we suggest you add some other hues to the mix. Everything beige just sounds and looks too dull.
Furniture that is big and puffy can sure be comfortable. There’s no denying that statement. They can, however, take up a lot of space and not look all that flattering with everything else in the home. In the 90s, most rooms were stuffed with overstuffed furniture, even ones that looked like leather. They sure didn’t look sleek or stylish. Nowadays, we want slimmer but still comfortable furniture to fill our homes. If you wish to have something puffy or fluffy, throw big pillows on the couch or chair. The overstuffed armchair look is just not it for us.
They may have been popular in the 70s and 80s, but they were definitely a thing still in the 90s. Lava lamps, and even glitter lamps, were all the rage in the 90s. They gave us light, even if not very much. They could have been used as a nightlight. And not only did they provide a little bit of light, but they also looked fabulous while doing it. You could get them in almost any color you wanted, and they were relaxing to look at. They just don’t seem to fit in with today’s decor styles. They remind us more of a hippy look, not sleek at all.
If you weren’t making everything in your house beige or your entire kitchen white, you were probably making everything purple. Although it’s a pretty color, it’s not for everyone. If you pay attention to some of the popular shows that first aired in the 90s, you will know exactly what we are talking about. The walls were plastered with purple in television shows like Friends and Sabrina, the Teenage Witch, and it was also even the color of children’s favorite dinosaur, Barney. It wouldn’t have been so bad if they used the paint sparingly. However, it seemed to be in every room. It wouldn’t have been so bad if they had added some other shades to go along with it. Sometimes something can become too much.
Folding Screens Can Actually Still be a Trendy Addition
When minimalism reached interior design in the 90s and became popular, everyone started incorporating the elements of Japanese and Chinese decor in their homes. This was in hopes of giving it that Zen aesthetic. This look was accompanied by some sort of folding or sliding screen. Sometimes these were used as just a look, sitting in front of a wall, but not blocking anything. Other times these screens were used not only for their look but also for practical use, like a wall or divider. After the 90s died out, so did this look in most homes. However, that doesn’t mean you still can’t use this look in your own home.
Although it was mentioned early about white, beige, and even purple being trendy colors for decor in a home from the 90s, that doesn’t mean other shades weren’t popular either. Primary colors were popular, too, especially when they came in bright shades. These colors could be found in many homes and used as accents to compliment the rest of the room. This means that the couch could have been a neutral tint, accompanied by bright-colored pillows to compliment it. Bright colors are still popular today and have even become popular for hair dye.
Wall borders were also very popular in the 90s. Think of wallpaper, but only on the top or bottom borders. You didn’t need to have wallpaper to have a “fence” around your walls, but some people even did that, so their entire walls were distracting. Not only were their borders, but the borders usually had a pattern to them. The most popular being floral patterned wall borders. They could be applied by either adhesive, just like any old wallpaper, but stenciling the frames on the wall yourself was also a big home decor hit. Thankfully, this look has died down in popularity over the years.
Popular through both the 70s and 80s, white wicker furniture continued to be in everyone’s homes during the 90s, as well. To step up the game even more with this look, it was accompanied by floral upholstery. It wasn’t uncommon to walk into someone’s living room or den and find all the white wicker furniture, including the table, covered with cushions and pillows that all had floral patterns on them. We’re not bummed out that this look didn’t follow us into the 2000s, kids today are not missing out, and we don’t miss this look, either.
For some odd reason, everyone in the 90s had a thing for patterns. And we mean that seriously. They put patterns on top of patterns. Take this photo, for example. The comforter has a design while lying on top of a bed skirt with another print. The pillows, bedside table, and even the curtains have patterns on them. Not only do they have different designs that almost seem to clash with each other, but they are also all sorts of different colors as well that you might not have ever thought about going together.
If you grew up in the 80s, you must remember walking into the living room, and the entertainment center was the first thing you’d notice. It probably had most, if not all, open shelves stacked with tapes, DVDs, CDs, a TV, and maybe even a stereo. We think the reason for this was probably because the adults all wanted their friends and family to see their collection of technology and entertainment when they visited. If there wasn’t space to put in a new speaker, a shelf might even be taken out to make more room for other things.
Plastic Potted Plants that Do Nothing But Gather Dust
House plants always seem to brighten up a home, whether they are flowers or plants with giant leaves. Keeping plants alive can be a struggle for some, especially if they are kept indoors. Sometimes they don’t get enough sunlight, and sometimes they get overwatered. That’s where faux potted plants come in. The trend of artificial indoor gardening began in the 90s. Not only do you not have to worry about watering them, or worrying about your cat knocking them out of the pot. They can also be easily dusted. They help bring nature’s beauty inside, without all the work of a natural plant.
The look and feel of a ‘country kitchen’ was all the rage during the 90s. However, these kitchens may have looked a little different than the charmingly modern farmhouse kitchens we see today. To say the least, kitchens in the 90s tended to feature decor you wouldn’t catch anyone putting on a display today. Kitchens had a mixture of oak cabinets, animal statuettes or artwork, walls covered with decorative dishes, and counters or shelves with real or artificial fruit and floral arrangements. If our kitchens looked like how they used to when we were growing up, we would call that tacky. Keep reading for more awesome home trends from the 90s.
While there is absolutely nothing wrong with buying things from the thrift store, sometimes you just have to stop and think about if you should really purchase what you have in your hand and think about where you’re going to put it when you bring it home. In the 90s, no one felt like that, and they seemed to like putting everything they bought from the thrift store on display throughout their homes. It’s not bad to do so, but if none of it matches, is in rough shape, or is just outright weird looking, then maybe it shouldn’t be put out for all the world to see. It makes the room look tacky, and just thrown together.
A 90s decor trend that you may or may not remember would be the decorative ‘faux’ painting. Different styles that were ‘faux’ appeared in kitchens, living rooms, bedrooms, and even bathrooms all over when it became a trend. The photo displayed here is known as suede faux painting, which creates a paint finish perfect for helping hide any imperfections in the wall. A popular paint combo that went well with this look was russet-tinged orange and yellow, and these paints were a color wash favorite in the 90s. While this look may not be so popular these days, it’s still a style with which some of us can still vibe.
For some reason, we will never come to understand that during the 80s, it seemed to be that the ‘resort decor’ look was a popular trend in homes. Sporting an ultra-light scheme of the color of pastel pinks and barely-there peaches. When the 90s rolled around, that trend was carried over and was given a spin. This look was made to create a tropical feel, with deep yet vibrant magenta and turquoise color pairing. We don’t really miss this trend, and we don’t think many other people are too bummed to leave this look in the past.
Ah, the good ole Jackson Pollock affect. Some may remember the bright neon hues the 80s had to offer. Well, 90s kids may remember that playful and graphic pops of super saturated primary colors were a staple in the early 90s. Although it may have been the 80s and 90s look, you can still find this trend in some people’s homes. Today, these pieces are of bold pigmented shades and can be found in eclectic accent pieces, trendy, color-blocked rooms, and more. This type of artwork fits perfectly in any room that needs a pop of color added to it, like in this photo above that shows a white kitchen with a very colorful and graffiti-inspired backsplash.