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6 Items Design Experts Don’t Want to See in Your Home in 2024

A new leather sofa recliner in a modern house
Getty Images

Do you dream of hiring an interior designer to completely revamp your home? While we can’t have a designer visit you personally, we can fill you in on the items designers would ditch immediately if they were to enter your personal space. So, without further ado, here are the things four interior designers across Canada do not want to see in our homes in 2024. That’s right, if you’ve got any of these decor items in your home, it’s time to consider donating them… pronto! Happy purging, everyone.


Montana Labelle, a Toronto-based interior design in a room she designed
Montana Labelle

1. New Leather Sofas and Recliners

“In the ever-evolving world of interior design, trends come and go, and one trend that is rapidly fading into obscurity is the era of lumpy leather sofas and Laz-y Boy Recliners. Once regarded as a symbol of luxury and sophistication, these outdated pieces are being replaced by more comfortable, stylish and functional alternatives. The primary downfall of lumpy leather sofas is their lack of comfort. Over time, leather can develop unsightly lumps and creases that compromise the seating experience. Modern consumers prioritize comfort in their living spaces, seeking sofas that provide plush support without sacrificing aesthetics. Innovative materials and designs now offer a superior level of comfort that lumpy leather sofas simply cannot match.”

“Interior design trends are shifting towards cleaner lines, sleek profiles and minimalist aesthetics. Lumpy leather sofas, with their bulky and often outdated designs, clash with the contemporary desire for streamlined furniture. Today’s consumers prefer sofas that exude sophistication through simplicity, opting for smooth textures and refined silhouettes over the cumbersome appearance of lumpy leather. Finally, as awareness of environmental and ethical issues grow, consumers are increasingly turning away from traditional leather upholstery. The leather industry is associated with environmental degradation and animal welfare concerns. Many individuals now prioritize eco-friendly and cruelty-free furniture options, favoring sofas made from recycled materials or plant-based fabrics over lumpy leather sofas that contribute to unsustainable practices.”

— Montana Labelle (Toronto, ON)


Amanda Hamilton, a designer from Calgary, Alberta
Amanda Hamilton Interior Design

2. Mass-Produced Home Decor

“While incorporating current trends can help a home feel relevant and current, we tend to steer clear of overemphasizing passing fads to keep your space feeling timeless and chic. One item, or in this case, items we’d like to see banished are mass-produced decor that lacks character. Being mindful while purchasing, selecting items from local makers, treasures found on your travels or commissioning a meaningful piece of art, helps to tell a story about who you are in your home. Where you invest your dollars reflects your values and therefore should be a thoughtful process of selection. Not only does this approach support local artisans and potentially underrepresented makers, but it also brings a ton of personality into your home that you often can’t find in a one-stop shop.”

— Amanda Hamilton (Calgary, Alberta)

Sha Wang, an interior designer from Vancouver, BC
Space 9 Interior Design Inc.

3. Heavy, Dark Furniture

“I often advise against incorporating dark, heavy furniture into a room due to its significant impact on both the ambiance and practicality of the space. Dark furnishings tend to absorb light rathe than reflect it, resulting in a smaller, darker, and less welcoming atmosphere, especially in areas lacking natural light. Additionally, bulky furniture pieces can visually overwhelm a room, making it feel cramped and stifling, especially in compact spaces. Instead, I suggest opting for lighter-coloured furniture with sleeker designs to promote a sense of openness and airiness. Lighter furniture not only brightens up a room but also facilitates easier rearrangement and a more adaptable layout. By selecting lighter, more versatile pieces, homeowners can enhance both the visual appeal and functionality of their living spaces, fostering a welcoming and comfortable environment for daily living.”

— Sha Wang (Vancouver, BC)


4. Fake Greenery

“I frequently discourage the inclusion of artificial greenery in home decor. Despite their
convenience in requiring no maintenance, fake plants often betray their artificial nature,
diminishing the overall aesthetic of a room. In lieu of artificial alternatives, designers advocate for the incorporation of real plants whenever feasible. Live plants not only impart natural beauty and texture but also enhance air quality and infuse vitality into the home. Moreover, nurturing live plants can be a gratifying endeavor that fosters mindfulness in daily routines.”

— Sha Wang (Vancouver, BC)

5. Overly Matchy-Matchy Decor

“Designers often advise against overly matchy-matchy decor, where every piece of furniture, fabric and accessory perfectly coordinates. While coordination is important for a cohesive look, too much matching can make a space feel stale and lacking in personality. Instead, consider mixing different textures, patterns, and styles to add visual interest and depth to your decor. Incorporate pieces with contrasting colors or materials to create a more dynamic and eclectic atmosphere. This approach not only adds character to your space but also allows for greater flexibility in expressing your unique style.”

— Sha Wang (Vancouver, BC)

Matthew McCormick, an interior designer from Vancouver, BC
Matthew McCormick

6. Poor Lighting Choices

“As a designer who focuses on lighting, I have a great appreciation for what light can (and can’t) do in someone’s space. From setting an ambience, mood or purpose for a room, lighting is one of the most critical attributes to making a well-designed home come together. As for what I never want to see in 2024, it would have to be the use of compact fluorescent bulbs or any lighting technology where you create a mish mash of colour temperatures that really take away from the desired colour palette or mood in a space. We may not even realize how this can affect our energy level or overall vibe of the decor.”

“By more consciously selecting your lighting or layering the light in a space, you can make a quick and impactful update in your home. For example, it’s great to primarily using pot lights for function and perhaps select a larger, more impactful decorative statement fixture that is just as beautiful on as it is off. Ensure you install a system that allows for a nice dimming curve, so you bring the levels quite low in the evenings to wash a wall or floor, which is a relaxing way to end your day in a way that mirrors your circadian rhythm like the setting sun.”


— Matthew McCormick (Vancouver, BC)

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