Published on : Tuesday, January 19, 2016
The term “megatrends” stand for the obvious but also the unnoticed strong undercurrents in societies, which occur to varying extents. Megatrends can prevail for several decades, because they are long-term and enduring phenomena. These megatrends can determine demands in a home and also impacts furniture as a product.
In the run-up to imm cologne 2016, the German furniture trade association (VDM) conducted a research into megatrends and exhibitor survey to better understand important trends and tendencies in the furniture and interior design industry for the new 2016 season.
Our living areas are going to become smaller. Increasing house rents are forcing people into smaller apartments. Furniture will get more multi-functional and smaller. With ecological materials gaining more preference, homes will continue to get “healthier”. Heating and lighting appliances are becoming more energy efficient and furniture is being pushed in the direction of healthy comfort, optimised in terms of ergonomics. In addition, a lot of new furniture is made of lightweight material and easier to move.
Furniture is taking on a nostalgic look. Current furniture designs are understated and very much reduced to the functional. Such furniture and accessories hearken back, visually, to bygone times. Be it garden furniture, beds, cabinets or armchairs: in all kinds of furniture, long-known design qualities are being rediscovered. Mid-century-design, as it is called, that is to say designs from approximately 1940 to 1960, is the most sought-after in the coming season. This mid-century-character also has an impact on the general proportions of furniture. In the current season, furniture is tending to be smaller than in previous years. Despite the functions remaining the same, materials are being economised, just as in the more frugal times of the previous century.
Investment in outdoor space will continue to increase. The living area of garden, balcony and terrace is becoming more important. The comforting sense of relaxation and vacation is being brought to the home balcony. Alongside the furniture there are innumerable outdoor accessories, such as rugs and lighting, which can quickly create a holiday atmosphere on the balcony at home.
In textiles, delight in combinations and stylistic inconsistencies score highly. Stripes, floral patterns, and abstract graphics – the world of colours and patterns for upholstery fabrics is very diverse. Ornaments as an opulent design feature also remain popular.
imm cologne 2016 will see an enormous variety of freely combinable shelving modules, some of which can be assembled even without any tools, and which are suitable for any need and living arrangement. Modular shelving is flexible, light and expandable. And moving home is convenient and uncomplicated with small modules.
Design is becoming more international. With hindsight, you can always tell from which era a piece of furniture is from, but not from which country. In the era of globalisation, furniture worldwide is also taking on a global design vocabulary, which emerges, especially in urban areas, from the ever-adapting living conditions.