Holland is an interior designer in Needham, MA, with a wildly popular Instagram account, PleaseHateTheseThings, where she highlights the worst home decor fails she’s ever seen. She started by posting blunders she encountered on the job—and before she knew it, was getting flooded with submissions from her fans, who have grown to 118,000 strong. Clearly, many of us love to loathe bad home design!
And so, in honor of Thanksgiving, we thought we’d showcase some of the worst kitchen design fails on her page, plus some of the scathing commentary they inspired. Here’s what we learned about what not to do if you ever plan to remodel your kitchen (unless you want to end up on Holland’s feed, that is).
1. There is such a thing as too much farmhouse decor
To quote brokerbrianva’s spot-on comment, “What in the pumpkin spice, yoga pants, HGTV marathon is going on here?” Yes, the modern farmhouse look is in. But when you add too many elements—barn door, milk paint chairs, and homey signs—the place is just over the top. Coco Chanel’s sage advice about jewelry can just as easily be applied to decor: “Before you leave the house, look in the mirror and take one thing off.”
2. One stove is plenty, thanks
There are eight-burner stoves out there. So why this homeowner bought two small stoves and smushed them together remains a simmering mystery. Commenter’s lwoodcox26’s theory? “They probably got, ‘Buy one get one free.’… Why else would someone do this?!”
3. Stick to pops of color—not the whole space
Your kitchen shouldn’t be so bright that you need to wear sunglasses to make some toast. Or as kerrydale puts it, “What a great kitchen to wake up to—wouldn’t even need coffee to start the day.” Limit pattern and color to, say, a backsplash. And maybe lay off the caffeine next time you hit the tile store.
4. Corner sinks aren’t all that practical, either
You may want to use every last inch of space in your kitchen. But no one wants to be backed into a corner pocket whenever they need to wash a dish or fill a pot with water. Toopstyle wonders if these might possibly be “his and hers” kitchen sinks?
5. A fridge does not make a great room divider
We know designing a kitchen is tough. Especially when it comes time to finding space for bulky appliances. But a refrigerator sticking out into the middle of the room? As magicwands1 says, “No room for an island, so they added a peninsula. It’s just a tall one.”
6. The ‘ye olde kitchen’ look should be done in small doses
Knotty pine can be cozy … in moderation. But when it’s on every surface, including out-of-place columns, alisonkg12 has a suggestion: “This can be fixed. Just paint the cabinets, remove the wood doors from the fridge, remove that weird bulk head, take down the curtains, box out the roman columns …. ugh, nevermind. Bulldoze.”
7. Resist going matchy-matchy
8. A stove doesn’t make a great kitchen island
“Go to the corner and think about what you’ve done, stove!!” wrote reighngold. Because building a small half-wall in front of a badly placed appliance does not hide the fact that said appliance is all alone in the middle of the room.
9. Light and windows are good things
Why would anyone—other than a vampire—block up a beautiful picture window that would let in a ton of light? Joellehamil has a theory—”For the benefit of the doubt, I vote witness protection program.”
10. Don’t make your island … an islet
This island looks so, so tiny compared to the rest of the kitchen. If you have the space—as this kitchen does—for an island, build one that you can cut more than a lime on. Though as mkchadwick62 points out: “More disturbing is the lamp hanging over nothing.”
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