Decorating your home can be a fun experience. You can enhance its strengths, hide its weaknesses, and make it a reflection of yourself. Or you can put the toilet in the kitchen, transform the pool into a flower pot and call it a day. It's your choice. Just don't be surprised if photos of your chateau end up on the internet and people laugh their heads off.
The subreddit "Housing Manure" (sorry for butchering the name but I have to paraphrase) is a place where Redditors have been gathering to do just that. Sharing the worst design, construction, and living conditions, they've successfully proven time and time again that, for better or worse, human creativity knows no limits.
Similar to fashion, interior trends come and go, but true style is forever. Ideas often move in cycles, often reactionarily to external influences like social change and technology. To know which trends are currently in, I contacted interior architect and lecturer of interior design at Vilnius College of Design, Judita Striukienė.
"I think nowadays eclectic solutions are on the rise; it's really popular to combine different interior design styles," Striukienė told Bored Panda. "In fact, it's quite rare to discover a place that is true to just one school. When you say a home was designed according to a certain style, you usually mean that some elements have an advantage in that place over the others or there is some sort of leitmotif throughout the entire space."
"These elements are often dictated by the urban surroundings or the owner's wants and desires, including their hobbies, favorite furniture, the art that they own, and so on."
Some aspects of interior design, however, are more universal than others. "First and foremost, spaces have to be functional. Everything else is more or less decor, creating a certain mood," Judita Striukienė said. "Only after a designer makes the apartment or house serve the owner's lifestyle and everyday life can they start working on other things like eliminating the flaws of that particular place."
After these crucial steps, interior designers usually move to more subjective matters.
As you can see from the pictures, there are plenty of ways to mess up the look of your home. But Judita Striukienė said it's not just the visual aesthetic that's at stake.
"Firstly, we have to mention technical mistakes—unnecessary interventions into the structure of the building. People make them due to a lack of knowledge and/or overestimating their abilities. Because of that, some real estate developers are now providing buyers with detailed lists of what they can and cannot touch."
The interior architect recalled a time when a person damaged the construction of the entire facade just because they wanted a niche in their shower!
Then there are the financial mistakes. "How often people miscalculate can vary from culture to culture, but a huge investment into a property (one that will not pay off when selling it) can hurt quite a lot. For example, you can spend a small fortune on altering the floor plan but it might not add any value or, even worse, future buyers might find the changes irrational."
Judita said other common mistakes occur in the kitchen and bathroom; places where you really need to know the materials. The good thing here is that the answers are usually clear-cut and known to most industry experts.
But something tells me even they couldn't have saved some of these homes from their owners.
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