How to (Tastefully) Buy Into Trends Without Selling Out

If you’re experimenting with bold colors, he also recommends living with physical samples of proposed materials rather than making judgments based on images or memory. “One’s perception of color will vary based on times of day and in context of environment,” Houston says.

6. Research your aspirations

Kat Bell, cofounder and creative director of Argyle Design in Los Angeles, says another factor that can help you be more discerning about trends is educating yourself on the history, intent, or inspiration behind them. “Knowledge will give you power to be confident in your design choices and promote your individuality,” Bell explains. If you’re into the Togo sofa, she cites as an example, do some digging on postmodern design or Michael Ducaroy’s lesser-known pieces that bear a similar aesthetic. “The more you learn about something that catches your eye, the more likely you will love that piece even more or potentially open up your world to more options and more ideas,” she adds.

Alternating Zellige tiles in a complicated pattern create a unique backdrop for this modern kitchen.

Photo: Sam Frost

7. Put your own spin on it

Rather than taking a cookie-cutter approach to a trend, putting your own personal stamp on it can steer your home away from looking like a replica of someone else’s. Lindye Galloway, chief creative officer of Lindye Galloway Studio + Shop in Orange County, California, uses Zellige tiles as an example of a well-established trend that can be tweaked a couple different ways. “We have been playing with its application for a while now and have cracked a code on how to give [it] a unique look that goes hand-in-hand with your style,” she says.

Galloway recommends trying out different shapes, colors, and configurations to avoid getting stuck in a boring 4×4 or 2×8 pattern rut. “Try a couple of sizes all mixed in together. Or, rather than using just one solid color, explore a couple of complementary colors together. There are also ‘raw’ options that don’t have the shine to them, and we love seeing those combined with others.”

After all, sometimes the best way to get ahead of a trend (or to avoid falling under one’s influence) is to simply start your own. As Vasquez insists, “Be bold, be incendiary, be your own trend.”

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