Grandma’s Decor That is Back In Style

Dec 17, 2021

powder room
CoCreative Interiors Site Icone

Written By cocreativeinteriors

Out with the new and in with the old!

With the rise of Grandmillennialism (short for Grandma Millennial, or “new-age Grandma”), decor that could be found in your grandma’s house is now fabulous and sought after.

Disenchanted with mass-produced furnishings and decor, those with a unique style personality are bucking the system. Grandmillennials are rebelling against gray, generic “design” by filling their homes with special finds that have soul, incorporating vintage pieces to adding new items with a nostalgic twist.

From visiting estate sales and antique stores to digging through attics and storage spaces, treasures are often hiding in plain sight. Here’s a rundown of our favorite Grandmillennial design elements:

wallpaper grandma's decor


Nearly banished from the design scene for being antiquated and tired, wallpaper has made a stunning comeback. With the rise of neutral-colored design and PTSD from stripping pastel floral wallpaper from the 80s, people avoided it like the plague.

No more, my friends! Wallpaper is back and better than ever, both in user-friendly application styles (hello removable options), and a plethora of patterns. Take care to choose a quality paper and consider professional installation. Many people cringe at the thought of removing wallpaper, harkening back the days of peeling pieces off bit by bit. A professional installer will prep your walls to ensure easier removal when the time to do so comes. (Though we firmly believe that an intentionally-designed home never goes out of style. Think about it – how many fabulous homes preserved from the past are still absolutely stunning?!) Wallpaper is a hallmark of the decor found in grandma’s house and we love seeing it make a comeback!

Photo: Tori Hartwell Photography

drapery grandma's decor


As the Millennial generation settles into forever homes, and as the Grandmillennial style gains popularity, drapery has stepped back onto the scene in a big way. Nothing elevates a room quite like window treatments – as icing on the design cake, they can single-handedly achieve an upscale, finished space.

Though simple white curtains have their place, drapes in a fun pattern with colors to pull together a seemingly mishmashed collection of treasures make all the difference.

Photo: Tiffany Ringwald Photography

Plate wall grandma's decor

Decorative Plates

A wall of decorative plates is peak grandma! With stashes of china flooding vintage and thrifting markets, pieces with patterns that speak to your style make for easy accessories. No need to find a matching set – an eclectic collection makes for a stunning art installation.

Photo: Heidi Harris

Colored Glassware

Far less expensive to manufacture than clear glass, colored “depression glass” pieces made their debut during the Great Depression. From plates to candy dishes, depression glass makes for a fun collection you can grow over time while treasure hunting in antique stores, thrift shops, and estate sales. If you’re impatient and want a full set of depression glass ASAP, modern adaptations are readily available at stores like Pottery Barn and Urban Outfitters


Your grandmother likely registered for a specific china pattern when she married; though this practice remains common today, it is much less prevalent. Typically reserved for holiday dinners and special occasions, collections were tucked into a china hutch for safekeeping. Don’t hide heirloom pieces away if you are lucky enough to have your grandmother’s china or your own beautiful pattern! The Grandmillennial lifestyle embraces entertaining and gathering loved ones together. Celebrations of any kind warrant breaking out the good china. 

China Hutch

Remember the beautiful glossy china hutches in your grandma’s dining room? It is where her fancy wedding china was displayed. Fewer people have these large pieces of furniture in their homes because they are big and HEAVY. Once you are in your forever home, they can be a beautiful addition to your dining room. 

If you love finding older furniture, these are all over Facebook marketplace for very little money. A china hutch is excellent to display your china (of course), but it can also be a beautiful space for a bar area! If you feel extra creative, you can roll your sleeves up and paint your new china hutch a bold color and turn it into a statement piece. 

Bar Area

Bar carts are having a moment! Maybe it was the past two years of staying home, or people simply like a great cocktail and want to make them at home. A bar area was a staple in grandmas home, and with some chic updating, they are a fantastic addition to any living space. Check out our deep dive into how to style a bar cart. 

Headboards & Decorative Bed Frames

Fabric-covered headboards, wrought iron frames, and four-poster beds all inhabited rooms in a grandma house. A beautiful bed was the bedroom’s focal point, and the bed was dressed with pretty linens and plush pillows. Our favorite style of bed is one with a lush fabric-covered headboard. You can really customize the room based on the fabric you choose; from moody velvet to cheerful chintz, your imagination is the only limit.


Remember how ornate and textured lamps were stationed on side tables in your grandparents’ and parents’ homes? Pleated fabric lampshades or tiffany glass made the lamps more than just a light source. They were a part of the ambiance! Lamps are one of the most effortless changes you can make to a room, so play around with your style and test out some options! 

Photo: Ballard Design

grandma's decor

Homemade Decor

We all have artwork created by grandmas, aunties, and moms somewhere in the family. Back in the day, people had hobbies that turned out incredible art pieces. There are probably some beautiful pieces floating around your family that could be added to your home. Some beautiful treasures are probably packed away, from needlepoint and quilts to doilies and ceramics. As mentioned before, you don’t have to use every single piece you find, be selective! 


Grandmas always had a collection of something. Spoons, candle holders, baubles, figurines, or trinkets. While we would not recommend displaying an entire collection, some well-placed pieces add history and beauty to any grandmillennial design. Poke around and see what is hiding in your parent’s attics! You never know what you might find.

Floral Patterns

Grandma=Floral that is just a fact! Floral patterns take us back to grandma’s house, from curtains to wallpaper to tablecloths to linens. Floral designs have made a comeback. From demure prints to massive wallpaper murals, florals bring a feminine vibe that is pure grandmillennial. When choosing florals for a space, you can blend floral patterns, but use a critical and editing eye, so you don’t go from beautiful to busy. 

Photo: Tiffany Ringwald Photography

Gallery Walls

Remember the walls of family photos in your grandparent’s homes? A gallery wall was sure to be found in most homes from the 1950s to-90s (and maybe today). Gallery walls are making a resurgence, and they can be a lovely way to add a moment of nostalgia to your home, but in an updated fashion. Whether you are creating an art wall or your own gallery of family photos, a gallery wall is a way to showcase what is important to you and your family. 

Photo: Tori Hartwell Photography


We talked about adding patterns in your wallpaper choices, but it does not need to stop there! The quickest way to add more patterns to your design is through fabrics. Pillows, drapes, upholstery, and linens are blank canvases. Prints can be mixed and matched for an eclectic granny chic look. The layered patterns that were common in our grandma’s decor can be incorporated with a modern twist to achieve the same warmth and style.


A true hallmark of grandma’s house was the embellishments on all of her furniture and decor. Tassels on pillows, fringe on blankets, and piping on the sofa. Embellishments elevated day-to-day objects to something just a little more special. Look for accessories that have little embellishments to tap into this pretty aesthetic. 

Photo: Amazon

How to Incorporate Grandma’s Decor

While we LOVE that all these items are back in fashion, we recommend using them with a critical eye. These nostalgic elements found in grandma’s decor work best when combined with more modern components. You want your space to be inspired by grandma’s house, not replicate it exactly. 

If you are wondering how to curate the perfect granny-chic room, send us a note! We love working with our clients to incorporate unique things important to their family history. . CoCreative Interiors’ signature, collaborative process is designed to help you use what you love to create a home that reflects your unique style.




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