This Is the One Home Decor Trend You’ll Regret the Most, According to Designers

updated Jun 1, 2021
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Over the past few years, designers have made one thing very clear: they’re not fans of matching bedroom sets. And while that sounds harsh, they have good reasons that have nothing to do with judgment of your personal style.

“The biggest objection I have to matching bedroom sets is that they feel like a shortcut to design and bypass the necessary process one needs to take to customize their home to reflect who they are and how they live,” says designer Sara Bengur.

A more personalized set adds an extra something to the space. “We love calm, serene bedrooms and think of bedrooms as a sanctuary at the end of your day,” says designer Liz Goldberg. “By curating special pieces, you create a more custom feel.”

But, of course, there are good reasons to have matching bedroom sets, in spite of what the experts say. Stores and sellers often offer good deals on items if you buy them in sets. If you’re moving in a hurry and don’t have the time to lovingly select each bedroom item individually, then a set makes sense then, too. Or maybe you inherited a matching set, or just plain like the look of them. And you know what? That’s all OK! It’s your bedroom and you can do whatever you want in it.

But if you do happen to have such a set on hand and are feeling less than fantastic about it, don’t stress — you can easily tweak it a bit to make the pieces look more unique. Here’s how.

Credit: Minette Hand

Just Switch Out Your Nightstands

“If you absolutely must keep a few pieces, I would say a way to shake it up is to do different nightstands,” says designer Elizabeth Stamos. “Having a different pair of nightstands next to the bed can bring in some interest and contrast.”

Don’t be afraid to think outside the box (literally). “One could be a dresser and the other a decorative table,” Bengur suggests. You could also opt for a little asymmetry and choose just one nightstand or let a chair, stool, or shelf stand in for a nightstand.

Then, revamp the remaining bedroom pieces — the bed and dresser — with some top-notch styling. “If the bed is upholstered, throw a cool textile over the headboard to change the look,” Stamos says. “Find a vintage mirror, and put it over the dresser, layered with some art and accessories. Get creative, and show your personality with accessories, too!”

Credit: Abby Cook

Vary Finishes

You could also try painting one or more of the pieces to add some visual interest. Pairing walnut nightstands with a painted dresser is an excellent place to start, says Anne Mueller, principal at Briar Design. “If this feels too bohemian, do the dresser and nightstands the same, then switch up the headboard material.”

Add Wallpaper

Go ahead and get crafty! “Wallpaper a room, and wallpaper the set’s dresser in the same wallpaper,” suggests designer Katie Gaylord. “This will give a more customized look and help conceal a heavy shape.”

Add Textiles That Pop

At the end of the day, you definitely don’t have to give up a special matching bedroom set or feel like you have to alter it. It’s easy to make a cohesive furniture collection feel a little more unique by adding some cool textiles and accessories — an upholstered bench, cool lamps, or a fabric headboard — to your space to give the space a whole new look, says designer Elizabeth Klosterman.