Key trends for 2018 include colour, natural materials & technology

Walking the aisles at Ambiente in Frankfurt, it was easy to see what Annette Palmisano of bora.herke.palmisano meant when she discussed the four major trends to look out for this year.  There were lots of bold colours, but also more neutral tones such as brown and grey. Natural materials were very prominent as was the combination of technology and wellness.

Below we look at these trends and showcase exhibitors who perfectly demonstrated key elements of each trend in their products and stands.

Modest regenerations

According to Palmisano this trend is all about minimalism, industrial charm and unpretentiousness. “Products have a contemporary appeal with renewed tradition and fit into a home that is reduced in design,” she says. “Items that gain beauty over time i.e. wood, concrete, rattan and wool are part of this trend with natural colouring, glazed or enameled.”

Key words include modest, minimalist and timeless.

Companies like Stenton have applied this to their ranges very well.

Colourful intentions

Bold colours are combined with natural materials. “Ethical considerations determine the mix of materials and their processing; re- and upcycled products are as sustainable as they are efficient.”  

Key words include spiritual, functional, ecological and dynamic.

“Braided, quilted and heavily patterned―checks, stripes and edging decorate recycled plastic, metal, wood and textiles. Solid colours, varnish, fluorescent details and ethnographic ornamentation turn ordinary utensils into attractive objects,” she adds.

Kahla cups are a great example of using recycled materials and a splash of colour.

Technological emotions

When you think of technology, emotions don’t directly come to mind, but Palmisano says companies are experimenting with new technologies to augment wellbeing. “The emotionally appealing designs are based on unusual material amalgams and sophisticated effects.”

Balanced, experimental and relaxing are key words that describe this trend.

A great example is Somnox, which has developed a sleep robot that helps you fall asleep faster, sleep longer and wake up naturally.

Opulent narrations

This trend is all about the extravagant, opulent and dramatic. “Lavish materials, techniques, patterns and decorative elements characterise this style. Precious stones and artistically decorated porcelain, unusual leather work and assemblages go well with these,” says Palmisano.

By Marion Gerritsen