30 Pics That Perfectly Sum Up “The 80s Interior”, As Shared On This Instagram Page
The '80s were a fascinating decade. It was a time of excess, brash attitudes, and bold colors. A period when artists dared to dream in every possible direction, and cultural icons didn’t hold back with the creative forces they unleashed. But even though the '80s are widely known as the golden age of Western culture that blessed us with countless gifts, let’s be honest — it's equally weird. Especially stylistically.
It’s easy to look at the design choices from the decade, whether clothes, gadgets, or decor, and know it was a completely different era. But once you look past the strange, wacky, and tacky, you may find a certain charm in its gaudiness. And thankfully, there’s an Instagram account that’s working hard to showcase a delightful compilation of the best of the decade.
Enter 'The 80s Interior' project that offers its 381k followers a peek "inside the rooms of the eighties." The account is full of bright and colorful interiors that are the total opposite of the trendy obsession with minimalism where everything is carefully arranged. We’ve gathered some unique examples to offer you a daily dose of inspiration, so continue scrolling! Be sure to upvote your favorites and let us know which ones you loved most in the comments.
My 80s Conservatory Is Better Than Yours!
Who Wants To Snuggle Up In Bed In This Loft Apartment, Watching And Listening To The Rain On The Slanted Windows? Decor By Design - 1988
Was There Ever A More 80s Bedroom?
While the ‘80s might be known as the ugly era of decor, London-based retail manager Simon Knight is devoted to changing people’s perceptions. His delightfully flashy 'The 80s Interior' project has been around the block for a while. It’s not as old as the photos Knight collects, but it started on Instagram in 2017 when he was searching for pictures of an old shopping mall he used to visit. When he shared the photo on his account, it received an outpouring of support from friends about the memories the image evoked. Then, Knight just knew there was an account to be made there.
"I love anything to do with the 80s and I also love interior design," he said of his throwback Instagram account in an interview with AnOther Magazine. Knight explained that when he hopped online to seek out retro interiors, he "zoned in on the 80s and it brought me back to my childhood."
I Wouldn’t Need A Holiday If I Had This Fabulous 80s Slide At Home!
When Your Office Building Has A Foyer With A Restaurant, Waterfall With Pond, Skylight And Tropical Planting 🌴 Commercial Interiors International - Grosvenor Press 1986
After he launched the account to delve deeper into his personal fascination with the interior designs of the time, the pictures Knight picks up range everywhere from shopping centers, restaurants, and offices to unique bedrooms, plant-filled studio spaces, and overly-tiled bathrooms (and let’s not forget the galore of tropical palms and flashy pool areas).
Decorating On The Cheap - Mary Gilliatt 1986
As the founder of the account explained, the inspiration for his project was simply the feeling of nostalgia. "It takes people back to a time they remember fondly, even a touch or smell," he said.
Although one criteria helps him determine which pictures fit perfectly into the page and which ones fall a bit short: "An 80s interior, so long as it has no humans in it." "On my feed, I like the interiors to be void of people as I like my followers to imagine themselves in the rooms and make it their own," Knight explained his reasoning to Sleek Magazine. "It also just looks nicer, more like a set piece."
Hanging Plants, Wicker And Windows! The Los Angeles Times California Home Book, 1982
Cove Haven - Pocono Resorts. The Legendary And Kitschiest Of Couples Resort Boasts Honeymoon Suites With 7-Foot Champagne Glass Whirlpool Baths Overlooking Glass Heart-Shaped Pools. Promo 1989
Pool Party Anyone? Sunset: Ideas For Swimming Pools - 1981
What’s more, each picture is accompanied by an entertaining caption that often pokes fun at the excess in aesthetics that are often synonymous with '80s design.
Knight noted that most of the images are simply found. "Sometimes I find it hard to find out where some are from or who the designer is, but I often get contacted with the answers which is nice."
“Making The Most Of A Wonderful Location On America’s West Coast, The Architect Has Designed The House Around The Windows.” Terence Conran’s New House Book 1985
This Bathing Annex On The End Of A Modern Suburban Home Epitomises Peace And Relaxation. A Sunken Tub Of Pure White Tile Is Trimmed With Hand-Painted Blue And Gold Tiles In A Room Equally Clean, Pure And Neatly Boarded By Tile, Plants, And Windows
Thanks to Knight's sharp eye, the pictures he collects for 'The 80s Interior' certainly represent the era in a different and more beautiful light. The founder discovers kitschy images from old interior books and magazines and simultaneously finds himself in a world where peachy color palettes and gaudy neon somehow manage to co-exist.
The '80s interiors aficionado describes his account as a "nostalgic, neon, inspiring design with no boundaries." A brief scroll through the feed also exhibits a sense of greed and lavishness of the decade. "It was the time of money and people just did what they wanted — I think that also transferred into interior design. It’s just so over the top and wild."
Skylight Anyone? The International Book Of Lofts - Susan Slesin, Stafford Cliff, Daniel Rozensztroch 1986
Me: I Just Want A Subtle Look To My Dining Room. Also Me:
80s Home Spa Realness! Beyond The Bath: A Dreamers Guide - Thomas Cowan 1983
From one-of-a-kind velveteen sofas and dreamy pool slides to fascinating mall lobbies and the abundance of kaleidoscopic bathroom tiling, it’s safe to say that 'The 80s Interior' is a treasure trove of over-the-top design from the era. "80s interior design was either dusky tones with soft edges and lighting, or it was angular and bold with neons. I love both equally," he said, adding that the details he feels drawn to the most are the textures, colors, and lights.
Knight revealed his most-loved room of them all is the bathroom, "especially if there is a carpeted step up sunken bath with a palm in the corner. Most rooms of the 80s had some sort of fern or palm plant in them!"
Is It Comfortable? Who Cares When Your Bathroom Looks Like This! Bathroom Design - 1987
The account that’s full of extravagant and confusingly carpeted moments also serves as proof that the '80s design is back in full force. In fact, Apartment Therapy stated that there’s been a 14 percent increase year-over-year for the '80s in search, including a 90 percent increase in searches for "tessellated furniture" in the last two years.
Brick, Wicker And Ferns Oh My! This Bathroom From 1982 Is Giving Me Life
One explanation for the '80s style interior resurgence is simply that it’s fun. Combining these funky and visually pleasing artifacts leaves room for experimentation and creates joy, something that’s truly welcome in this turbulent world.
Anthony Barzilay Freund, editorial director and director of fine art for the retail site 1stDibs, believes that the recent surge also owes to the fact that the decade produced furniture that was often bold, bright, confident and playful. "Today’s collectors turn to these objects as a happy antidote to the environmental, social, political, and health issues that seem to define these times," Freund told Apartment Therapy.
Imagine Climbing These Stairs Drunk! The Complete Home Book - Pamela Ferguson 1983
Justin Riordan, the founder of Spade and Archer Design Agency, added that if you wish to incorporate some '80s design pieces into your own dwelling, make sure to mix them with some modern pieces. "Don’t buy everything for one room in one style," Riordan said. "Buy a piece here and a piece there, and mix it in with the things you have. Keep it organic, keep it growing. So if you’re going to buy an ‘80s couch, don’t buy the massive ’80s chair to go with it."
Lastly, don’t be afraid to get ahead of the interior design curve, and, most importantly, trust your instincts! Your place should speak directly to you, and if your space feels like a dream, that’s definitely a bonus. Be sure to continue scrolling through this list, upvote the examples that would make you feel like living in a fantasy, and let us know what you think in the comments.