Design Marmite: 8 Things to Love or Leave

Design Marmite: 8 Things to Love or Leave

Eleanor Büsing
May 1, 2015
(Image credit: Rachel the Hat)

Here in the UK, we have a saying for those things in life which are particularly polarizing— we say they're "like Marmite." If you've ever tried the dark, sticky and savory spread, you'll understand why: you love it, or you hate it. In design, as in life, there are divisive trends which bring out people's passions. Read on for eight of most prevalent ones, and give your opinion in the comments below.

(Image credit: StyleCaster)

1. Books Organized by Color. Obviously this was going to be top of any list of polarizing design around here! Grouping books by hue is certainly eye-catching, but whether that's a good thing is up for debate. Some say streamlined, others sacrilege.

2. Mismatched Chairs at a Dining Table. Is it effortlessly eclectic or too try-hard? Charming and irreverent or just college-kid style?

3. Accent Walls. Applying a color or texture to only one wall in a room is practical; you can test a look without committing, and it saves money and often time. But some think this is a wuss' way out, and say go big or go home. What about you?

4. Bathtubs in Bedrooms. It's certainly a contemporary look, but is it hopelessly time-stamped? Or just luxurious and lust-worthy?

5. Extreme Pattern Mixing. Some say the more patterns and colors, the better. But how much is too much? What's a hot look and what's a hot mess?

(Image credit: Jelanie)

6. All-White Kitchens. It's been the look in kitchen design for years, but for everyone who loves the clean, pristine look of a white-on-white cooking space, there's another who thinks they're stark and sterile (and is probably welcoming the emerging trend toward softer greys, greens and blues).

7. Open Shelving. Within those all-white kitchens, open shelving has been gaining steam for the past few years. But is it pretty and practical, or just distracting and dust-collecting?

8. Art that Leans. So you've spent time collecting a bunch of beautiful pieces, and a pretty penny having them professionally framed. Is it cool and irreverent to leave them leaning against the wall? Or just plain lazy when you've got walls to spare?

And most importantly, where do you fall on actual Marmite? (Full disclosure: I love the stuff.)

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