Interior Designers Tell us the Best $50 They Spent on Home Decor in 2023

We speak to our favorite interior designers to find out the best $50 they spent on living room decor this year

A living room with decorative touches
(Image credit: Nicole Franzen. Design: Bespoke Only)

2023 has seen some wonderful decorative trends. With the evolution of the 'Minimaluxe' movement came a wave of beautiful decorative pieces; in the world of decorative lighting, we've seen a renaissance, and we've embraced a whole new range of textures and materials. It's been a great year for decor, so it's no wonder the interior designers have been doing some serious shopping.

We've all got a favorite home purchase of 2023 (mine is my pair of wall sconces that sit above my bed), but the tastemakers' purchases are really telling of what interior design trends have made an impact and what is here to stay. To find out, I caught up with three of my favorite designers to find out their favorite buys of 2023.

1. Fireplace accessories

A fireplace with log holders

(Image credit: DuRietz Design)

If there is one major takeaway from 2023, it's that we want our homes to be cozier than ever before. A key pillar for coziness is warmth and lighting, both of which are covered by open fires or log fires. Fireplaces have experienced a renaissance, and homeowners are enjoying the opportunity to decorate mantelpieces and purchase fireplace accessories that reinforce the cozy living room aesthetic. 

'The best $50 we spent 2023 was on some lovely antique cast iron log holders for our open fireplace (above),' says Christoffer Du Rietz of Du Rietz Design. 

'Our new open fireplace was made in a Calacata marble we had saved for five years back and designed with some nice details to match the house. It came just in time for fireplace season. Apart from looking great, it helps a lot when lighting the fire, which is many times a week on cold winter days.'

2. Decorative trinket boxes

A white toned home office with a neat bookshelf on the side

(Image credit: Mel Bean. Photo credit Laurey Glenn)

I can't have enough decorative trinket boxes. They help group bits and pieces together, and help to bring my favorite materials into a space. Particularly useful for the bedroom if you want to restyle a nightstand, or perhaps on a bookshelf that needs a bit of decorative attention, they're fantastically helpful for an uncluttered home.

For Melissa Warner Rothblum of Massucco Warner, this sculptured marble vanity box by west elm made a beautiful impact on her living room shelf. 'I think this little box is so chic and is a lot of bang for the buck,' she says. 'It's also perfect for tucking away keys on an entryway, remote controls, bedroom trinkets, or garage clickers.'

3. Coffee cups

A silver coffee maker beneath metal shelving

(Image credit: AB Photo and Video. Design by Interiors by Popov)

Kitchen accessories have taken off in 2023. No longer are our kitchens spaces for purely functional items. Instead, we're enjoying items that bring a cozy feel to the space. Forget all those branded mugs you've somehow accumulated over the years - it's out with the old and in with the new. We're coveting a curated collection of kitchen items that fit with the wider aesthetic of the room - be it a stylish chopping board displayed artfully on a backsplash shelf, or an open shelf of beautiful coffee cups.

Stoneware coffee cups that have that handpainted feel have proved popular, used as decor as well as for a functional kitchen necessity, while interior designer Corinne Mathern takes pride in the pair of glass espresso cups she has in her kitchen. 'One of the best things I bought for under $50 this year was two vintage Art Deco glass espresso cups on a trip to Italy this year. They make my early morning coffee time with my husband really special and they're so beautiful,' she says.

Oonagh Turner
Livingetc content editor and design expert

Oonagh is a content editor at and an expert at spotting the interior trends that are making waves in the design world. Writing a mix of everything and everything from home tours to news, long-form features to design idea pieces on the website, as well as frequently featured in the monthly print magazine, she's the go-to for design advice in the home. Previously, she worked on a London property title, producing long-read interiors features, style pages and conducting interviews with a range of famous faces from the UK interiors scene, from Kit Kemp to Robert Kime. In doing so, she has developed a keen interest in London's historical architecture and the city's distinct tastemakers paving the way in the world of interiors.