Houzz.com is celebrating its 10th Anniversary. It is an online company that inspires designers and homeowners alike with home decor, design ideas, etc. Today they posted an article describing the story behind their “most popular photo,” which is of a kitchen designed by Mary Jo Fiorella. The photograph captures a beautiful kitchen. It shocked me that the kitchen was remodeled in 2007. Thirteen years ago! The designer credits the popularity of the kitchen photo to her use of timeless design and classic materials. Therefore, let’s examine which elements in home design are timeless and classic.
Clean lines, classic patterns, and neutrals are all examples of timeless design.
Clean lines- designers consider non-ornate features on cabinetry, furniture, lighting fixtures, and hardware to possess clean lines. These elements are streamlined in design. In addition, a bonus to using clean lines includes the fact that they literally make cleaning easier.
Classic patterns- stripes, plaids, botanicals, and damask patterns have been used throughout the ages. Currently geometric patterns are super trendy, but you can incorporate trends in easy to remove items like throw pillows. Try using three different classic patterns in a room to create a layered and textured feel.
Neutral colors- whites, creams, blacks, grays, and navy can be described as neutrals. To read more on the expanse of the neutral definition, click here. Using neutrals as the foundation of your design will stand the test of time. They never go out of style. You can always incorporate color with easy to remove items like blankets, pillows, baskets, etc.
In Fiorella’s kitchen design, it is easy to see these timeless elements at work. For example, the Shaker-style cabinets in white create clean lines in a neutral color. Additionally, the subway tile backsplash is arranged in a classic pattern.
High quality items made of natural materials create a classic feel to any design.
Quality items- choose furniture and fabrics built to last. Invest in well-made goods. However, this does not have to break the bank; you can find quality items at garage sales and thrift stores. Vintage items can still be high quality. Look for items to incorporate in your room that will be there for the duration.
Natural materials- wood, stone, and wool are examples of natural materials. Anything made or found in nature will be timeless for design purposes because they have been available for as long as mankind can remember. On the other hand, synthetic materials tend to date rooms and houses.
In the kitchen design by Mary Jo Fiorella, there is no furniture or fabrics; however, the kitchen utilizes many natural materials. The hand-scraped, hardwood floors, the beautiful marble countertops, and the glass-front upper cabinet doors all combine to create a sense of timelessness. Granite and quartz are also two natural alternatives to a kitchen countertop.
The photograph at the top of the page is not the most popular one on Houzz.com, but it does share similar characteristics. It will give its homeowners decades of beauty because it too has incorporated timeless design and classic materials. Fiorella said of her kitchen design, “It’s amazing how you can do a timeless design and have people really respond to it this many years later. It’s a testament to a white kitchen with classic materials.” Knowing how to create timelessness will not only help you love your new build or remodel for many decades to come, but it will also help potential buyers fall in love with it if you ever decide to sell. You cannot go wrong with timeless design and classic materials. They will always win.
To read more about timeless design, check out The Spruce and The Every Girl.