Fun, garish & boring – What the UK REALLY thought of 2018’s interior trends

Have you redecorated your home this year? Did you splash out on a few new accessories? If (like me) you've been Pinning 2018 interiors trends like mad, you may well have incorporated a few elements into your home. But what did the great British public REALLY think of the hottest new trends in 2018? I'll tell you...

Have you redecorated your home this year? Did you splash out on a few new accessories? If (like me) you’ve been Pinning 2018 interiors trends like mad, you may well have incorporated a few elements into your home. But what did the great British public REALLY think of the hottest new trends in 2018? I’ll tell you…

I read an interesting survey by Chapel Interiors this week that not only shared details of the biggest trends of 2018, it also showed exactly what the UK thought of those design ideas. Some were positive. Others not so much! Nonetheless, it was interesting to look back at how we’ve all been decorating our homes this year and how people have summed up the trend in just one word.

Let’s start with the trends – do any of these sound familiar?

  • Woodland retreat
  • Tropical
  • Rich pigments
  • Ice cream pastels
  • Nordic noir
  • Velvet
  • Maximalism
  • Pendant lighting
  • Fringing

Those are just a few of the themes that have been circulating around the interior design industry this year and I can certainly see how my own home has been influenced by these trends. I upholstered my Lloyd Loom chair in tropical fabric earlier this year to make it look super-summery. I’ve been buying macrame from the local makers market, which taps into the fringing trend perfectly. And I love ice cream pastels at ANY time, whether they’re on trend or not!

In the survey, each trend was assigned four words and respondents were asked to choose the word that they most associated with the style. In some cases the trend had a standout word that most people agreed on, for example, the Rich Pigments trend was mostly called ‘bold’. In some cases, two or more words were in close contention for the top spot so here’s what the survey said about these 2018 trends:


With deep colours, plenty of texture and rustic furniture at the heart of this trend, it’s no wonder that most people described it positively. The two words associated with this interiors style were ‘homely’ and ‘cosy’, so it’s an 86% positive result. It’s the ideal trend to tap into at this time of year because it feels festive and snug so, if you’re planning a quick revamp this side of Christmas, I’d recommend the Woodland Retreat trend.


Seeing as I’ve already tropicalified my office chair, I was nervous to find out what people thought about this trend. I didn’t want the result to be negative, that’s for sure! Luckily, most of the words associated with tropical decor were positive: ‘fun’ and ‘flamboyant’. The 3rd most popular word was ‘garish’ and I’m okay with that too. As a huge fan of 60s and 70s decor, I’m used to my taste being described as garish!


I was interested to read about the results of the velvet trend because I’m currently considering investing in a new sofa for the living room and those gorgeous velvet sofas all over Pinterest have turned my head. But do I really want to be associated with the words that the UK public used to describe the trend? Actually, yes, I do. The most popular word was ‘luxurious’ and ‘stylish’ was in third place. I’ve skipped over the second word because ‘dated’ is another term used to describe the velvet trend, but I think that’s okay; velvet does tend to give everything a vintage look and I like that effect in an interior.


Having written a lot about the Scandinavian themes of lykke, hygge and friluftsliv over the past couple of years, I was keen to see how the nordic noir interiors trend was perceived by the British public. This was one style where three of the four words were chosen in almost equal measure. The words were ‘sophisticated’, ‘cool’ and, unfortunately, ‘boring’. Darker interiors are certainly popular on Pinterest at the moment, but I guess it’s quite a contrast if you’ve been trying to creating light, airy spaces in your home over the years. I’m planning a dark wall in my hallway when I get round to decorating it, but maybe Nordic black might be a step too far!

What do you think of these trends? Have a read of the Chapel Interiors blog post to find out the results for all of the other interior trends in the list above. Do you have any of these styles in your home and how would YOU describe them? Let me know in the comments below and please share your decorating plans for 2019, I’d love to hear what you’re up to!

Thanks very much to Chapel Interiors for allowing me to share the results of their 2018 interior trend survey.


This article is sponsored collaboration. The pink links in the content indicate a sponsored link or information source. The blog post reflects my own experience and the sponsor hasn’t had any control over my content 🙂

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Cassie Fairy
Cassie is a freelance writer with a Masters degree in lifestyle promotion studies. She loves to 'get the look for less' so regularly shares thrifty fashion posts, DIY interior design ideas and low-cost recipes on her blog.

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