Trends I'm noticing in interior design
When talking about my role here at OFS as Director of Interiors I often mention my favorite aspect of the industry as a whole is that it’s always evolving. I love that each day looks a little different from the last; that’s so exciting. Now that the year has ended, it’s been fun to reflect on the trends we saw in 2019 while also looking ahead to what’s to come in 2020. My hope is that you’re just as inspired as I am.
1. Bring the natural world in
There are more ways to bring the outside in than with just plants (although that’s clearly still a great place to start).
One of the more intriguing trends we’ve been noticing is that of organic lines taking the place of what was classically rectilinear in form. It’s becoming more noticeable in both the products we produce and the spaces we place those products in that nature is a key influencer. Desktops are now often rounded on the corners and upholstered pieces have softened edges that feel more organic and natural to sit in. In interiors, you’ll start to notice arched doorways that feel more approachable and welcoming, and perhaps my favorite trend is all of the new shapes we’re seeing in interior finishes such as tile and flooring. So much fun.
As I mentioned above, adding plants to both public spaces and workspaces is still a beautiful way to make an interior space feel more connected to nature. But if for some reason you can’t add plants in a meaningful way, there are still plenty of ways to capture that feeling. Try selecting a color palette that feels inspired by nature and keep warm wood tones and chunky, cozy textiles in mind when specifying furniture throughout the space. We like mixing in dried plant and floral arrangements in spaces that don’t get as much natural light too. Nature is honest and imperfect and I love how that translates into our own personal spaces.
2. Join the maker movement
In the same way, as we bring in more imperfect, nature-inspired details, it’s no surprise that designers are turning to the everyday maker to help create accents that are one-of-a-kind. We are all looking for a way to stand out, and what more perfect than a one-time-only, handcrafted piece created by a local artist?
From embroidery to macrame to hand-painted wallpaper, interior design everywhere is adopting unique homemade details to make a space memorable, to tell a story, and to support the beauty and craftsmanship of the individuals that inspire us.
As we move into 2020, find local makers near you to support small businesses and give your space a new story to tell. Whether the right fit for your space is a pottery-maker, a painter, a weaver, or even a gardener, we all want to know the real, human stories of the people near us—and we all want to create places that are memorable and inviting.
3. Add patterns and pops
We want to stand out, so we’re becoming less afraid to try dramatic, bold statement looks. After all, what do we have to lose by choosing design innovation? In fact, we have more to lose by being considered outdated or forgettable.
So here we are, in the brave new world of bold interiors—bold colors (especially rich jewel tones), bold patterns (like the rebirth of animal print), and even layering patterns on patterns. For interiors, this means an abundance of accent walls (hand-painted, if you’re lucky), the return of wallpaper, and more vivid statement pieces.
4. Embrace those subtle, but impactful, touches
We’ve noticed many "homeful" details incorporated into the workplace, including an emphasis on comfort, design detail, finishing touches like artwork, plants, and textiles, and the incorporation of color—especially colors that had once been rejected in the workplace such as pink, pastels, and purples.
Workspaces today encompass artistic expression and inspiration within their spaces more frequently. Ultimately, the increased focus on nuance and subtilty in the workplace have positively influenced all of these things by bringing a desire to work in beautiful, inspiring, comfortable places—and offering the ability to also help create those spaces.
5. Tie in textures
As digital experiences grow, improve, and absorb more of our day-to-day life, real, tangible moments only become more and more precious. As humans, we want these moments to be meaningful, one-of-a-kind, and inspire us to continue creating. Texture offers a vital part of those experiences. In fact, many children even read books that offer a variety of textures.
Interiors today are no different. We love to create spaces that offer a variety of sensations and looks, so interiors today incorporate this variety, including (but not limited to): velvet, mohairs, knots, furs, and carpet (everywhere). Add in these textures (and more) to make your interiors even more of an experience.
6. Work in wellness
It is no secret that wellness is becoming more and more sought after in workplaces. This push for wellness, however, goes far beyond simply packing a healthy lunch or drinking more water. In fact, the design of interiors actually shapes an individual’s wellness journey. The WELL Building Standard best lays out the different elements of a space that affect our wellbeing through these 10 categories: air, water, nourishment, light, movement, thermal comfort, materials, mind, community, and innovation.
Each of these elements plays a role in employee wellbeing, and thus they are changing the way that we design our workplaces. Today, we see more cafes, kitchens, and healthy food bars than ever before—because better access to healthy food leads to better food choices throughout the day. Say goodbye to the days of vending machines and fountain drinks!
The furniture and layout of workplaces today are also less stagnant. Employees should move throughout the day, but with a stagnant desk where they sit all day, it is less likely that they actually will move. Workplaces today are designed in a more fluid, movement-friendly way, including more sit-to-stand desks, a wider variety of workstations, and less designated desk space.
These are only two ways that the growing emphasis on wellness in the workplace is shifting workplace design, but ultimately, well designs will only continue to grow as time goes on.
Images courtesy of: hearts in colors, lulu and georgia, Rosemarie Auberson, Casey Dunn, Rara Studio, the Citizenry, Juniper Oats, Mary Lennox, BoredArt, FormRoom, Zero Lighting, Emily Henderson, AIA Georgia, Raw Silk and Saffron, Jess Ann Kirby, Herve Goluza, EA/ST Co., Sonya Yu, Teska Overbeek, and Elena Grey.