AS the saying goes, one man’s meat is another man’s poison, but when it comes to interior design, the latest set of rules going viral online are fairly savage. Where does your aesthetic fit in?


What are the ‘rules’?

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, to mix one’s metaphors, but interior design student, Krishnan Rajaratnam, has unveiled what he believes to be the major decor mistakes made by homeowners that serve only - in his opinion - to make properties look cheap.


So what are the main mistakes?

The London-based designer - who has more than 93,000 followers on his ‘interiorbykrish’ TikTok account - has amassed millions of views on his latest videos, warning of the main mistakes, which include crushed velvet furniture and exposed TV wires. Rajaratnam also believes children’s artwork is not for wider viewing and therefore, should not be on display, while having a washing machine visible in a kitchen is a big no-no.


Any others?

Ikea drawers, which so many turn to as cheap and cheerful additions to homes, are too mass-produced to make a house look good, he says, as are patterned carpets, brightly coloured walls, exposed radiators and mass produced artworks; all highlighted as "things that make your house look cheap” in his viral online videos, as are "short curtains, flat cushions and fake plants”.



White plastic showers, wall stickers and even roller blinds are all in the firing line, along with patterned duvet covers, canvas artworks and small artworks on the walls.


And the things that make your house look expensive…?

Half panelled walls, ceiling coving, oak wood flooring and tall headboards are said to give properties a classier look. When his followers questioned his recommendations, such as the tall headboards, saying they were "not popular anymore", the designer said that was "a good thing because your house is more unique" if you use them now. He also points to oversized artworks, Roman blinds, freestanding bathtubs and plinth lighting in kitchens as "interior design positives" too.


What’s the reaction been?

His views sparked mass debate online, with thousands of comments ranging from “This is all a matter of opinion. Do your houses exactly how you want to. No one should tell you any differently” and “My house isn't to impress anyone but our family”, to “If you like it then keep it, he’s just pointing out what doesn't look the best to others” and “Free standing bathtubs are expensive…surely the house will look expensive, it's just simple logic.”


Interior design is on the up?

The pandemic saw a major shift in the way we value our homes, with homeowners investing more time and money in making their properties exactly the way they want them, with lockdown turning our houses into sanctuaries amid the chaos. Figures from business app tech firm, Powered Now, show that as Brits were locked down, five million redecorated rooms in their homes, 1.5 million built an outhouse and over 1 million built home-gyms and extensions. In all, British consumers spent £110.3 billion on home improvements, an increase of nearly 30 per cent on pre-pandemic figures. Individually, Brits spent an average of £2,011 per person on home refurbishments.