Bold Decorating Ideas Your Mom Wouldn't Try

You've always admired your mom's sophisticated style, and to this day you consider it the pure definition of "homey" at-home design. But perhaps it's time to think beyond what's safe and consider making a bold decision or two. Here are six tricks of the contemporary trade that might not suit your mother's aesthetic but clearly speak to your modern mood.

Two-Tone Cabinets

Kitchen cabinets have traditionally been wood up top and wood below, or white up top and white below. Yet nowadays, the two-tone painted look has stolen our hearts. It's a riskier design choice, especially when it comes to choosing your pair of paint colors, but the result is well worth a little nail-biting to the finish line. One way to ensure success is to go with a mom-approved white up top, and then apply your avant garde accent color of choice below. Pretty pastels, like the pale blue shown here, are always a good idea!

Colorfully Painted Ceiling

Mom may stand by her decision to go the traditional route with a white ceiling, but you're ready to mix things up -- way up, that is! Instead of neutral colors like white or beige, try thinking outside the color lines and paint your ceiling a bright shade of teal, orange, or even hot pink. If you're worried you'll take things too far, consider painting your walls a crisp, clean white so the bold color on the ceiling doesn't weigh you down.

Pattern-Packed Risers

Wallpaper on the walls is definitely a technique Mom can stand behind. But wallpaper on the stairs? That's a new one! Prove to her that the look is just as pretty as her traditional wallpapered powder room by choosing coordinating patterns of wallpaper, like this pair of black-and-white prints. Treat this design trick just like you would a normal wallpapered space -- by choosing coordinated artwork and neutral, low-key accessories to go with it. It's hard to deny the lovability and appeal of wallpapered stairs when you style them just right.

Sponge Painting 2.0

Sponge-painted walls have been around as long as you (and your mom) can remember, but it's time to make over the traditional application. Instead of adding all-over color (or multiple colors) to a room, try cutting your sponge into a crisp mod shape, like this retro-inspired triangle. Then dip the sponge into a single color and apply it in a pattern on a white-painted feature wall. If you really want to blow Mom's mind, try adding a spongy pattern to your ceiling or a piece of furniture!

Cool Concrete Counters

Countertops and tile surfaces have come a long way since back in the day when your mother was developing her own style. Now it's your turn to try something new -- like concrete! Although this material traditionally was limited to utilitarian building applications, concrete has worked its way up as a chic material now fit for showing off. Try concrete countertops in your bathroom or kitchen for a fresh take on modern convenience.

Brightly Painted Molding

High-gloss molding painted a color other than white might make your mom do a double take, but you know that rich, saturated color can go anywhere you want in today's contemporary spaces. Think chair rail, picture molding, door and window casings -- anything goes when you put your color-loving mind to a project. Although your mom might need time to adjust, there's no denying that saturated color adds a heavy dose of interest and wow factor to a space. Make color work for you rather than following the status quo.


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