Laurie Gorelick Interiors


Jumping the Shark

I judge when an item or trend has "jumped the shark"--a phrase I picked up from listening, albeit occasionally, to Howard Stern--when it's so ubiquitous that "knock-off" companies have their own versions. That's when you know it's time to rethink a design. Sadly, the knock-offs happen all too quickly lately. All the more reason to invest in classics. It's okay to mix things up with trends. That's what accessories are good for. It's like building a wardrobe: buy good quality classics (you know, the navy blazer), and then spice it up with trendy accessories--the things you won't mind discarding after a few seasons.

Here are my picks for designs that have jumped the shark. If you go here, be cautious and spend wisely.

1. Industrial Coffee Tables

Industrial Maison Coffee Table at HomeDecorators.comI first saw tables like this several years ago at Brimfield, the antique and flea market that's held three times a year in Brimfield, Massachusetts. Vendors selling industrial salvage had these tables made out of reclaimed wood, pallets and industrial parts. Clever and environmentally sound, this table is now available on

2. Grain Sack Decor


B. Gover Limited Grain Sack Chair     Pottery Barn Vintage Grain Sack Pillows

Vintage grain and feed sacks made the home decorating scene a while back. Again, I first noticed this trend at Brimfield about seven years ago. Vendors of vintage textiles were selling washed linen originally made for grain and feed storage sacks. Purveyors of country goods were fashioning the cloth into decorative pillow cases and reupholstering French bergeres with it. Now everyone is on the bandwagon, mimicking the look of the vintage cloth. Pottery Barn must have gobbled up the bulk of the inventory because now it's selling the vintage cloth on its site.

3. Moroccan Themed Textiles


         Shades of Light Rug                           Ballard Designs Fabric

I'm not sure who or what brought Moroccan tile patterns to the forefront of design. Maybe Kelly Wearstler, the iconic designer credited with re-inventing Hollywood Regency Style (see more below). Moorish influences in architecture date back to Byzantine times, so its understandable that Moroccan motifs would have staying power. But Moroccan patterns, as lovely as they are, are EVERYWHERE (and in case you didn't notice, even grace the background of this page). 

4. Mirrored Hollywood Regency Style


Viceroy Hotel Room designed by K. Wearstler Cabinet

We can thank Kelly Wearstler for re-inventing Hollywood Regency Style, a style connected with plush tufted upholstery, high chroma lacquered finishes and bold geometries. So much of what is ubiquitous in design today--mirrored furniture, chinoiserie motifs, rococo mirrors, among others--can be credited to Wearstler. There are many beautiful mirrored cabinets on the market today. I have even spec'd some for my clients. But knock-offs have taken this style from classic and tasteful to tawdry.

What's soon to be on the cusp? Beware the Union Jack.