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BRIANA: The most recent issue of HGTV Magazine has a feature, “Yay or Nay?”, that asks 10 design experts what they think about decorating dos and don’ts. I loved it, natch, and there was even a little overlap with topics that I had queued up for Defend the Trend! See-through furniture, for example. If you were a voracious Domino reader back in the day (as I was), I’m pretty sure you lusted after a Ghost Chair. The trend seemed to be dormant for a bit, but I’ve noticed it returning to the scene. The design panel in HGTV Magazine gave it a “yay,” but what do you say? Is acrylic furniture clearly elegant or transparently tacky?

lucite furniture

DEANNE REVEL: Love love love Lucite tables. They let you bring the funk in other areas like fixtures and textiles!

lucite table

BRIAN PATRICK FLYNN: You know, I can see why a good number of people find see-through furniture as stupid. It’s like being a fashion designer, spending months on a new collection, then just putting undressed mannequins on the runway, ones with no fabric, pattern or color story to look at; if it’s all form and no frills, what the h*ll is the point? Well, I will tell you what the point is: balance. See-through furniture is excellent for spaces where pattern, texture or color on walls, floors or major focal points are supposed to be the star. The transparency takes up zero visual weight, and there is a perfectly balanced look to the room as well as the intended functionality of the piece.

MARIANNE: Lucite furniture can be great for small spaces. I’m on the hunt for a small Lucite console to use in my daughter’s pint-sized room, as a table for now and desk/vanity later. A little bit of Lucite goes a long way, though!

lucite vanity

JESSICA: I remember the first time I saw a piece of Lucite furniture. It was love at first sight.

living room with lucite table

CAMILLE: Ugh, invisible furniture made out of Plexiglas (Lucite is chemically the same material, just given a different name by its manufacturer) – no thanks!

ALYSSA SPARACINO: Completely agree with Camille! Scanned through the House Beautiful gallery, and even if I won the lottery, I wouldn’t pay thousands for plastic!

KAYLA: I have to say, I actually like seeing the furniture in a home. You know, patterns, textures…Plexiglas is way too cold. I’d consider it for a small side table in a home office, maybe.

DAVID HAYNES: I can take or leave it, but it kinda reminds me of disguising a wall by painting it to look just like a wall. (Plus it lessens one’s ability to use furniture to hide carpet stains.)

KAYLA: True that, David.

Our thoughts on see-through furniture are pretty clear. Now tell us what you think:


Design Trends

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  5. Sharon says:

    Especially in small spaces, Lucite furniture keeps a room from looking too crowded. Best used as one table or one chair in a space, but can definitely up the ante in a room.

  6. elicbxn says:

    Clear furniture would make me no better off than my totally blind roommate. I can see that it would also annoy the partially sighted roommate. Can't you just see a hairball floating in midair because the furniture under it is transparent?

  7. rosewood11 says:

    In small amounts, this is lovely. I wouldn't want a whole bunch of it. There's always the problem of falling over something you can't see or don't notice. It's pretty, but not all that practical–and requires constant use of Windex!!!

  8. Tiberian Fiend says:

    You're just supposed to sense that they're there.

  9. Aunt Raven says:

    I love historic reproductions of skeleton clocks, but dust getting into the mechanism is an issue. A Shaker, art deco-, or traditionally inspired acrylic case for a wall or floor clock would work on so many levels without distracting from the fascinating clockworks. And I think there would be buyers for an acrylic mora clock case (for modern scandinavian country style); or a simple cukoo clock .
    The engravability of acrylic lends itself to the design of a Mora clock, which traditionally displayed the year it was built; an anniversary or birth date; and sometimes stylized floral designs.

Briana MowreyBriana is a writer and senior editor for HGTV.com. Her self-described design style is "mid-century modern magpie." She lives in a Brooklyn apartment with her husband, their spoiled dachshund, Chauncey,...


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