This year we’ll be seeing a diversity of colour like we haven’t seen in ages. Our attention is has settled gentle colours like muted pastels, smoky shades of grey, soft neutrals, metal hues, rich leather and marine tones along with at the opposite end of the spectrum vibrant jewel and fruit colours. Paint colours for the home still revolve around sophisticated basics with preference for cleaner whites, smokier neutrals and updated muted pastels. Feature walls are out, zone painting schemes are in and beige is a thing of the past.
FABRICS AND PATTERN
Prints and pattern are definitely back on the rise – visual impact is the key theme. On one side we see fluid looking prints, peacock feather patterns, photographic images, graded dip dye designs, text, blurred images, florals and tropical prints. On the other we see a strong geometric designs, 3d patterns, repeated forms, kaleidoscopic images and patterns inspired by cells and molecules. Fabrics are about texture be it visual or otherwise. Velvet, textures and raw looking weaves are popular and the use of fabric for sofas and upholstery is back.
Textures derived from nature, whether they are animal, mineral or vegetable are in. Think botany, insect prints, fossils, bone, wood, bark, stone and organic shapes. We are tending to like our woods looking raw, or if they are shiny – shown in a way that we can really appreciate them. We want materials and finishes to look authentic and we are using them in more simple ways in order to appreciate their beauty. Additionally we are leaning towards steel, copper, pewter, gold and other metal accents in preference to just chrome and stainless steel.
The popularity of matte finishes is growing in modern décor as we seek to add differing depths of interest into our buildings and interiors. A matte finish gives an object a raw, edgy look and also allows you to appreciate the overall form and material that an item is made of. This principle is crucial in modern design and it also harks back to our desire for natural and authentic softer finishes. This trend is growing in everything from tapware, lighting, furniture, accessories, kitchens and bathrooms, right through to entire rooms.
Industrial style pieces in the home have been a staple in the past few years, primarily in the form of lighting and furniture. We are continuing to love the look and character of these pieces. The approach of blending the purpose of an item and a considered industrially designed form is set to make its way into other items of a more practical nature within the home. There’s a move towards convenience, functionality and longevity and we now want quality from items that are mass-produced to go along with character in our homes.
To soften the lines of our crisper and cleaner looking modern homes we are adding accents of less rigid and more organic inspired shapes. Graceful, rounded, expanded looking shapes continue to be very popular but we are seeing that trend taken a little further into the direction of droplet, hanging, dripping, pulled, “gloopy” looking forms that look like they almost just “happened” or grew in the space. This trend is coming through mostly in accent pieces such as lighting, ceramics, glassware and accessories.
CRAFTED WITH CARE
Our appreciation for items made by human hands and a learned skill is undergoing resurgence. Craft made items and those with a unique one off “handmade like” feel offer us the chance to have pieces that we perceive as “authentic” in a widely mechanized and mass produced world. Whether its using traditional techniques or creating new ones “craft” is an expression of wanting to stay connected to what makes us human. Skills like binding, weaving, knotting, quilting and needlework will be evident in furnishings and accessories.
Social media and information technology are beginning to have an effect on the way that we live and also the way that we appreciate seeing things around us. Photographic images and images that have been manipulated with “instagram like” soft filters to add a nostalgic dream like quality will be seen in wall art, soft furnishings and accessories. Advancements in digital printing have made the possibilities to use images unlimited. Artworks can now be whatever size you like, put wherever you want and designed to feature whatever takes your fancy.
MERGING OF CULTURES
The influence of cultures from many different regions has been enriching our own for a long time now. We are seeing new interpretations of traditional ethnic designs as they morph into unending new possibilities. We see the influence not only in colour, texture and pattern but also in the “mix it all up” style of decoration that we tend to use. Major influences come from Africa, Asia, The Middle East and Europe. We are now also tapping directly into the USA’s own pre-melted pot for new inspiration.
ENVIRONMENT FRIENDLY IS MAINSTREAM
Environmental consideration is no longer something that just sits in the back of our heads. We recognise that the way that we live in the world and what we take from it ultimately has an impact directly upon us. Environmentally friendly design, sustainability, passive homes, products that require less energy, reducing the running costs of our homes, new lighting options, repurposing, recycling, up-cycling and new hybrid materials are either standard or continue to emerge