Trends of Interior Design 2021

The ICONIC AWARDS: Innovative Interior – a trend barometer

Ecology 2.0

Ecology 2.0 is much more than a trend, it is an ethical model. Demand for a sustainable economy and environmentally conscious lifestyles are leading to a historical change in values. Generation Y is not alone in increasingly asking about manufacturing processes, supply chains and materials. According to studies, the coronavirus pandemic has further increased awareness of the scarcity of natural resources. Consumers are now switching to lesser-known brands if they perceive them to be more sustainable, and are creating a long-term emotional attachment to them.

What was once considered boring is now regarded as sustainable. Instead of air-freighted mangos, regional produce is all the rage. In the past, furnishings and clothes had to be replaced regularly to keep up with the latest trends, but now durable products are becoming more and more popular. Manufacturers are increasingly expected to prove the sustainability of their production processes and materials; the time of greenwashing is over. According to Maurizio Montalti, a pioneer in the research and development of mycelium-based technologies for the production of natural biomaterials and products, eco-labels can help consumers find what they are looking for. Such certifications can in turn give manufacturers a competitive edge in the marketplace.

Among the ICONIC AWARDS: Innovative Interior 2021 winners are numerous projects that implement the Ecology 2.0 trend in their products. The "Adell" seating furniture from Arper is upholstered with a covering made of 80 per cent recycled polypropylene. The plastic was consciously considered a high-quality material, haptic qualities were emphasised. An organic surface structure reminiscent of the concentric circles of the tree rings conjures up an image of natural material without imitating it. With its "R.U.M." (Re-Used Materials), Danish furniture manufacturer Wehlers has produced the first chair made of ocean plastic. Its focus on sustainability is supported by the use of only two materials (ocean plastic and recycled steel), which can be 100% recycled. The "One Piece Wallcover" by Brainstoxx GmbH is a wallpaper made of recycled material, individually produced according to customer requirements and delivered in one piece. It is easy to apply and can be pulled off the wall like a sticker. This means it is mobile and can even be used again after a move. When dirty, the wallpaper can be cleaned with a damp cloth or in the washing machine - a durable product that can be recycled after use.

Exemplary projects:

Onepiece wallcover by Brainstoxx
Eco Lite by Woll
GROHE Blue Pure by Grohe AG
HANSAACTIVEJET Digital by HANSA Armaturen
R.U.M. by Wehlers APS

Living Multispaces

Home or workplace? Thanks to advancing digitalisation, living and work environments have been merging into one, especially since the coronavirus pandemic. According to studies, this trend will assert itself in future, as working from home is becoming the new normal in the context of a flexible working environment. As an area of activity-based working, in which people seek out the appropriate room depending on their activities, the home office is to serve as a place for concentrated work and basic activities. According to trend researchers, suitable zones are being created for creative collaboration with colleagues in modern office environments.

But what does this scenario mean for our homes? Dining tables or sofas can only serve as temporary workplaces and are not ergonomic. Few people have enough space for their own study. Therefore, new office furniture is needed that fits in with the interior and does not interfere with leisure activities. According to designer Nils Holger Moormann, the demands placed on the new furniture are high: »An acoustically effective room-within-room solution with the right lighting atmosphere is the ideal solution for me because it enables the family to withdraw. Office furniture should also be sufficiently versatile and multifunctional that it can fulfil all work-related functions and yet not be recognisable as office furniture the rest of the time.«

In the current list of winners of the ICONIC AWARDS: Innovative Interior, the furniture models from the »movo« series of the Croatian company Sobočan meet these changed requirements for workplace furniture in an exemplary fashion. »movo« is characterised by maximum flexibility: mobile, foldable and space-saving, the workstation can be converted into a sideboard or moved to another room after work with minimum effort. Equipped with two sockets and USB connections, the workstation is completely self-sufficient and can be used anywhere. As »movo« is lockable, sensitive documents can be safely stored.

The »Secretair Home« from Sedus Stoll AG offers a compact workstation for home use. Its clear lines, organic shape and rounded fascia are reminiscent of a classic secretaire. Although the piece requires little space, its curved shelf offers ample storage space for office paraphernalia. The high sustainability standards, which are anchored in Sedus' corporate principles, are reflected here in the felt panel made of recycled PET material.

Exemplary projects:

Calina. DESK by calina.systems GmbH
Combina D by L&L Luce&Light srl
Movo by Sobocan d.o.o.
nido by nido e.K.
Se:mood by Sedus Stoll AG
TAKEoSEAT by Klöber
The Wall by Orea AG
UME Sensor Dispenser by ZONE Denmark

New simplicity

In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, the focus has shifted to our homes. Prolonged periods spent at home are awakening new expectations. It is clear that quality and durability are in demand again. What used to apply primarily to fashion is now increasingly applicable to interior decorations. Items of furniture express a newly established awareness of changing circumstances and one's own attitude and personality.

At home, critical examination of the logic of growth translates into a desire for simplicity. This increases the demand for timeless, purist statement pieces and multi-generational furniture. The furnishings are characterised by clear lines and a timeless objectivity. They should be flexible, while remaining appealing in the years to come. The emphasis is on formal reduction and functionality without sacrificing atmospheric and sensual qualities. Today, people would rather save a little longer and opt for furnishings that promise longer-lasting pleasure as life-long companions. This creates order and space. Fewer, but deliberately selected eye-catchers bring calm into the home. It is all about creating free space and at the same time expressing your personality within your own four walls. This creates space for individual heirlooms, custom-made products and configurable, modular furniture that can be designed to suit your wishes in terms of colour, shape and materials.

Exemplary projects:

Adell by Arper
Gira Cube by Gira Giersiepen
LavaPura by Hansgrohe
NikolaTesla Fit by Elica
Rainbutton by Hansgrohe
Step Light by Centrsvet
Stoccolma by OliveLab