8 Timeless Home Decor Ideas That Will Make Your House Beautiful

by Bai-Xu

Today, I'm going to talk about timeless home decor. This is very different from what you see in the media. If you watch all the home tours of celebrities and listen to Instagram influencers and well-known designers on how to have a beautiful home, you'll have an unlivable home.

The list of how to create that kind of home would look like this:

  • Have a big house
  • Fill it with expensive designer furniture
  • Have no electronics and no cables anywhere
  • Don't move anything
  • Don't breathe
  • Stop living

This is why I've created this guide on how to create a beautiful home that you'll love for years to come, which is practical, simple to follow, and takes into account that we're humans and we need to be able to live, breathe, make a mess and sometimes buy the wrong things.

1. Pick old materials

When it comes to choosing finishes, try to pick materials that have been around for a really, really, really long time. There are certain materials that we find around us that have this enduring and timeless quality. If you can fill your home with finishes that are made up of these materials, your interior won't feel outdated as quickly, which saves you from having to renovate or change out everything in the next 10-20 years.

2. Use materials that patina

Everything that you bring into your home should get better with age, including yourself. If you buy something that only looks good on the first day and is in perfect condition, you are making life really difficult and expensive for yourself because that is just planned obsolescence.

If you buy a coffee table that's made of solid wood, over time, it also gets a little bit worn down, but you can always sand down the wood and then re-oil it again. The wood itself has a lot of irregularities in the grain, so as an object itself, it's just a little bit imperfect to begin with, which means that it's going to weather future imperfections better.

Leather is also a great material that gains a beautiful patina over time, as opposed to a plastic armchair that is completely scratched

after a couple of years.

3. No bold colors

Stay away from strong, saturated colors. The novelty of having a bright red dining room or a fluorescent pink bedroom will very soon wear off. We are most comfortable in environments that simulate nature as much as possible. So, if you fill your home with colors that can only be found in poisonous plants; it will not last very long before you want to paint over it in the opposite color.

4. Warm colors

When warm colors dominate your space, the color of the room that's going to reflect off all these materials and surfaces will likely also be warm. We, as mammals, enjoy baskets in light that's reminiscent of sunshine, fire, and candlelight. So, if you create an environment where the light is likely to be warm and bright, along with the shades of nature, it'll make you and everyone who comes to your home feel good in it.

5. Visual complexity

Unlike what some modernist architects might suggest, we actually like a little bit of visual complexity. We like decoration; we like variety and textures and interesting things to look at on our walls, on our floors, on our sofas, and our beds. I find that the less I look at minimalist and modern architecture interiors and more at just things I like, the more into ornament that I get. I love some visual complexity. This is different from clutter, which is a whole different thing.

Visual complexity is why we find the left street more beautiful than the right street.

It’s also why the left building is more beautiful than the right building, and one material is better than another material.

So, if you want to make your home last a long time because you like it, try to introduce some visual complexity.

6. Classic patterns

There are certain patterns that we see again and again throughout history, decorated on top of buildings and laid out on the lobby floors of very fancy hotels because our mind finds comfort in the symmetry, complexity, and geometric shape of these patterns.

7. Mismatching furniture

Now, when it comes to furnishing your home, remember that matching furniture is not always the goal. Ironically, if you look at the lovely, interesting, lived-in homes, the furniture doesn't really match. It's more like a collection of pieces that people have lovingly curated. In fact, a room with intentionally mismatched furniture can be visually appealing and incredibly functional.

Let's take chairs as an example. People are different sizes, and they sit in different ways, so a room that is filled with different chairs for different functions and people of different sizes will actually be a lot more functional in the long term because they have that flexibility built in.

8. Objects from your life

Decoration and interior design as a concept have spread through our society so widely that it's easy to forget what we actually love when it comes to decorating our homes. From the homeowner's view, it's pretty apparent that we should decorate our homes with things that bring us joy and are important and meaningful.

Somehow, I think now a lot of people, when it comes to decorating their homes, are more considerate from the visitor's perspective. This is why we all have the same generic artwork and decor, and every home starts to look more and more alike. The ironic thing is, when people actually come to our homes, they don't want this generic nonsense any more than we do.

What they really want to see are snapshots of your life and interesting memorabilia that you collected on your vacation so they have something to talk about.

I think this is why when I go into someone's home, I really enjoy looking at their bookcases; it allows you to glimpse inside the content they consume that shapes their mind and how they think.

This is what we find interesting about other people, really, really personal stuff.

The last piece of design idea I would like to share is that you don't have to follow these Instagram influencers or interior designers or even architects who are sharing their homes on social media in order to create a beautiful, timeless home that you really, really love. Do it slow; fill it with things that you enjoy, and that track your progress through life.

Timeless home decor

Those are my best tips for achieving timeless home decor. What are your favorite decorating tips? Share your ideas in the comments below.

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 1 comment
  • Designer X Designer X on May 20, 2024
    "No bold colors" is the silliest "rule" ever. If you love red, chances are very very good that you WON'T get sick of a red table. Surround yourself with whatever colors make you happy. I, for one, have had orange walls in my living and dining areas for nearly six years, and they still make me smile.