The One Piece Of Furniture You Probably Won't See In These HGTV Stars' Homes

In the world of interior design, decorators meticulously choose each piece of furniture to match a vision. Although there is plenty of controversy as to whether HGTV contestants actually get to keep the furniture shown off in the big reveal, we can be sure each piece is present for a reason in the redesign. Yet, there are plenty of options that are surprisingly on the "do not include" list for your favorite HGTV stars, especially in their own homes. From vintage couches and IKEA finds to matching sets and oversized tables, these design personalities have made deliberate choices to steer away from specific furnishings. Their preferences are a testament to their keen eye for trends and commitment to aligning their homes with their unique style.

Whether you are redecorating, or simply curious as to what Erin Napier and Nate Berkus think about your design choices, here are the furniture pieces you probably won't see in these HGTV stars' homes.

Nate Berkus dislikes flashy prints on upholstered furniture

Maximalist decorations are not Nate Berkus' style, so you would never find a couch with a loud pattern in his home. "Prints are tough on large-scale furniture — keep your sofa (and other large-scale items) to the basics," he told MyDomaine. Berkus tends to use solid colors for his statement pieces and adds visual character to the room using accessories. He does this because accessories can easily be swapped out for the season, or changed when you want to update your style. "Linens and cottons in solids can be dressed up or down easily and tend to look expensive," he continued.

This means that the fun, floral sofa might not be the best choice. Instead, pick a solid color couch (in a nontraditional color like red or blue if you must!) and dress it up with floral pillows, a dynamic throw blanket, or even fresh flowers on either side. Even if you disagree with Berkus' style and prefer a more maximalist look, patterned upholstered furniture is not flexible. It is difficult to revamp should you move house or place the item in a different room. However, fun accessories, as Berkus points out, are very easy to work with.

Emily Henderson hates espresso, shiny maple, and cherry wood furniture finishes

"Secrets From A Stylist" host Emily Henderson isn't shy about the kind of furniture she avoids bringing into her home. "My rule of thumb, although I do stray from it sometimes, is that wood should look as natural as possible. Don't buy something that is so off-colored that it doesn't look real, as if it couldn't exist in nature," she wrote on her blog, Style by Emily Henderson. "A little bit of stain or oil is fine — it's like getting highlights or putting on foundation — it just helps clean everything up. But make sure the tone works with the natural tone of the wood and stay away from shine."

The stains Emily is the most adverse to are espresso, shiny maple, and cherry wood. All of these options essentially drown out and overpower the color and grain of the natural wood. They can make a piece look cheap and gaudy, even if it was not originally. Instead, search for wood that is as natural to its original grain as possible. If you look around and see yourself surrounded by these generic finishes, don't worry — you can easily sand and buff them back to normal.

Rachel Taylor avoids poorly constructed or cheap wood

Home furnishings can be expensive, meaning that when you shell out for them, you want to make sure they are built to last. Something you will never find in HGTV host Rachel Taylor's home is poorly constructed, cheap wood pieces. To do the same, you have to know what you are looking for. "Solid hardwood furniture with fully assembled, glued joinery, upgraded soft-close drawer rails, and door hinges are the hallmark features of furniture that can be expected to last," she told Realtor.

Furniture made cheaply (we are looking at you, IKEA) might be missing these things. Not that we don't love IKEA, but its pieces are definitely not meant to last for generations. If you want to style your home like Taylor's, search for more traditional options instead of the newer DIY builds from a box. "Old-growth hardwoods like oak, maple, and walnut are top choices for functional decor that can survive moves, seasonal heat and humidity changes, and heavy usage for years to come," she continued. You can purchase these new, although Facebook marketplace and second-hand stores are also great places to look for older, sturdy furniture.

Laurie March won't buy a cheap mattress

When furnishing your first home, HGTV House Counselor Laurie March advises that it's best to start with donations from friends and family. This can save you plenty of money as you are settling in and just need the basics. However, there is one piece of furniture that you should always avoid secondhand if you can: your mattress. A good night's sleep is essential, and you just can't risk it. Instead of taking your roommate's sister's mattress or one from Goodwill, March thinks going direct to the source is best. "Go into a mattress store, try out the different levels of firmness, and figure out what suits you," she advised HGTV YouTube.

However, buying new doesn't mean you have to break your entire budget. Luckily, mattress stores are typically pretty predictable in their selling patterns. "If you can wait, try to purchase around a holiday when the mattress industry runs their biggest sales," she said. Luckily, this is also seemingly any holiday — from Black Friday to Memorial Day and everything in between. If there is a holiday, there is likely a sale happening.

Erin Napier doesn't like old furniture looking old

Who doesn't love vintage pieces? Everyone's favorite "Home Town" gal Erin Napier is one for bringing styles of the past into the present. Incorporating older bits into your spaces can give your home real character. However, Napier warns that if the furniture looks its age, it can drag down the feel of a room. She would never have old pieces in her home that look run down. For example, when redecorating her living room, she and her husband Ben went out of their way to update an older couch.

"My mom bought a couch in 1999, and it was the world's greatest," she told Southern Living. "Then she wanted something different and gave it to us. We used it for years. I got it re-covered, and Ben made new feet for it." Upcycling furniture is a relatively easy DIY project. So, if your deteriorating couch is staring you down, you could have a revamped, Erin-approved piece of furniture in no time.

Hilary Farr won't style imposing dining tables

If you love to entertain or have a large family, you might immediately assume that you need a large, sturdy dining table to accommodate everyone. However, designer Hilary Farr warns that larger dining furniture can easily crowd a space, making it seem clunky and hard to navigate. In many cases, older large tables might have been in the family for a while, making them hard to part with. However, Farr insists that the overall functionality of the dining room and the memories you will go on to create should be prioritized. "There's always room for one or maybe even two little pieces that have sentimental value because there is something to that, I believe it," she told Realtor. "But when it's clearly going to interrupt everything you're trying to do in a renovation, you have to find a way to just let go of it."

Instead, go for a table that is more proportional to the space. A good rule of thumb is to take the overall dimensions of the entire room and subtract six feet from each. So a 12-foot x 8-foot dining room would be well served by a 6-foot x 4-foot table.

Shea McGee will never use matchy-matchy sets

It can be tempting to buy furniture in sets when decorating your home, but you won't find any matching bits in Shea McGee's home. In a Season 3 episode of "Dream Home Makeover" titled "The Dream in Dream Home," she tells the audience, "Every piece of seating has a different piece of fabric on it. Nothing actually matches. That's what helps keep things more interesting and not too fancy." This idea is shared by most of the other designers on Shea's team, too. "There's something about furniture sets that don't bring that thoughtful feeling that mixed furniture does," Kelsie Lindley, Lead Designer at Studio McGee, said in a recent post.

Instead, McGee recommends that you should "weave in color and heavy textures through the pillows and throws," per an Interview with People. If you are confused about where to start, the designer recommends basing your living room furniture color palette around your sofa, as it is often the bigger piece in the space. From there, you can "create a higher-end look by allowing colors to gently flow into each other." When avoiding overly matchy sets, it can be difficult to know just how many shades and patterns to choose, but McGee has an answer for that. "I find that about five colors is the sweet spot for a great textile palette in a room," she told the magazine.

Tali Roth avoids dark, heavy pieces

Furniture styles are a matter of personal taste (and the trends of the time), but there is one type that HGTV interior designer Tali Roth just can't get behind. "Many people tend to lean toward heavy, bulky, and dark furniture pieces," she told MyDomaine. However, when working with a smaller space, these large, dense pieces simply suck up all the room. It does this visually because of its imposing presence, but also practically, as it does tend to be quite large.

You won't see darker wood pieces in Roth's smaller rooms, but if you have it in yours, all is not lost. If this is the only furniture you have and you are downsizing or want to free up some space in your current home, you can still rescue your furniture with a little DIY update. "When it comes to small apartment living, we need to go for lighter fabrics and finishes that will lift the space," she said. Whether you decide to refinish your pieces or add bright textiles to seemingly shrink them, you should notice your rooms begin feeling larger immediately.

Nate Berkus hates small furniture in tiny spaces

While you want more compact furniture for smaller rooms, you don't want to take that idea to the extreme and choose something too small to compensate for the square footage. Something you will never find in Nate Berkus' house, no matter how small the space is, is tiny furniture. "People tend to make the huge mistake of buying smaller furniture when they have a smaller space," he told Martha Stewart. "You really end up with nowhere comfortable to sit." His advice rings true, as cramming four smaller chairs into a tiny living room might initially seem like a good idea. After all, it's more chairs for people to sit in, right? But instead, you and your guests will just end up perched on tiny chairs and never be able to relax.

If you do have a space on the smaller side that you are styling, Berkus has a solution for you."Try and create a space around the moments you're actually going to use in the house, and not worry about shoving in as many pieces, because it's not comfortable," he said. For example, the designer mentions he has a large sofa in his family room, as it is a space he wants to be cozy. Don't worry too much about filling a room just to fill it. Instead, consider comfort and functionality when selecting furniture for smaller spaces.