Clean lines and neutral colors, while not the stuff of Instagram likes, will probably outlast current obsessions such as patterned cement tiles and benches upholstered with ratty sheepskins. Design pros preach that the backbones of your home — floors, walls and major furniture — should skew toward simplicity. In a decade, that swoop-armed Pottery Barn sofa might feel more tired than a low-slung, squared-off midcentury modern couch.
Holland says she sometimes gets pushback from clients when she presents a design proposal with neutral base elements. “They’ll sometimes say, ‘That’s boring,’ but I emphasize that the way to do these trends — macramé, a bold pattern — is in a pillow or a small area rug,” she says. It’s akin to shelling out for the little black designer dress you’ll wear forever, then dolling it up with this season’s necklace and shoes.