When I attempt to explain it to friends, I always decribe New York Design Week as a bunch of events that are 'sort of like runway shows for furniture'. At ICFF (the International Contemporary Furniture Fair) and other events like it, manufacturers of furniture and lighting show off their latest to buyers, curious onlookers, and design journalists like me. It's a great way to get a little peek into what's next in the world of home decor. Here are five of our favorite trends.
Unexpected colors (especially pastels).
How great is this Anglepoise lamp in powder blue? It's quite a familiar piece — we've all seen these lamps before — but it immediately caught my eye because of the matte, light-blue finish.
Meanwhile, Fritz Hansen is introducing their classic Series 7 chair by Arne Jacobsen in a couple of new colorways in celebration of the design's 60th anniversary. While the navy blue chair with black legs has a certain moody appeal, my favorite is the pale pink with gold (!) legs, which renders this simple shape unexpectedly elegant.
At ICFF I spotted a lot of fascinating patterns, like this bright graffiti-inspired one (from Timorous Beasties, because who else) that didn't look quite like anything I'd ever seen before.
Here's another Timorous Beasties design, a bit like a Rorschach blot on steroids.
I've been a fan of the designs of Calico Wallpaper for some time. Their marbleized designs are gorgeous and unique, and they recently introduced this new pattern, inspired by satellite images.
In the last few years we've seen a re-focus on craft and a new awareness and how and by whom things are made. This is great, and it's great to see modern, interesting designs created in a thoughtful, tactile way. This quilt, by Thompson Street Studio, combines traditional methods with modern patterns and colorways.
Traditional designs reloaded
We saw a lot of fresh takes on older shapes — designs that only looked a little familiar, with a new twist for a new era. This sofa, from the waist up, looks like a classic midcentury design — but the wood platform and long, thin iron legs make it something different entirely. (From DG Design.)
I was especially partial to this bench from O&G Studio, whose design is reminiscent of colonial furniture but features a bit of a twist in the shape of the back, made of two sets of spindles that meet at an elegant angle. The aubergine color (see #1) is especially nice.
That's right — in the world of home decor, where trends tend to come and go in cycles, the 80s are the latest decade to experience a resurgence. I've been hearing the name of Ettore Sotsass and his Memphis Design Group being bandied about a lot lately, and of course the 80s is already back with a venegance in the fashion world. I know this may be horrifying to some of you, but I am cautiously excited about it — I think a little bold color and weird, rioutous geometric pattern could be just the thing to inject a little fun and quirk into the self-serious bohemian interiors we've been seeing so much of lately.
The stools above are by Anna Karlin, a studio that also makes lots of other interesting products, most of which are produced here in the US. And this 80s-inspired wall lamp, by Lambert & Fils, comes in pale pink, which seems to be the color of the moment.