Design Trends Set to Shape 2024
Reflecting on the trends that have shaped 2023, we anticipate several themes will continue to influence and define the design scene in the new year. Our design team’s analysis of recent product launches and multiple product categories provides valuable insights into the evolving preferences and expectations of consumers. In this article, we explore emerging trends across furniture & hardware, architecture & interiors, packaging, and technology that are set to leave a mark on the creative landscape of 2024.
As the global population continues to grow, the significance of each square foot escalates, leading to an increased priority on space utilization in consumer preferences. This is not merely about the physical footprint a product occupies within a room; it extends to how easily it integrates into the logistics of moving, shipping, and retail shelving. Sheet metal is emerging as a popular material choice in this space-conscious design approach. Products like the Conecto water purifier showcase the use of bent sheet metal as its primary material, emphasizing functionality in a small footprint, fostering a modern ambiance while maximizing spatial efficiency.
Notably, during this year’s Maison et Object fair, designers like Muller Van Severen are incorporating metallic furniture collections characterized by elongated pieces that minimize part breaks, imparting a seamless, flowing aesthetic, and creating an infinity sensation.
The resurgence of industrial aesthetics is reshaping spatial design, characterized by the incorporation of sheet metal, perforations, and vibrant colors. Restaurants like Selma in Bogota, Colombia, embrace this trend with a striking yellow façade using perforated sheet metal to captivate guests before they cross the front door. These perforations not only create a modern facade but also create a sense of intrigue and depth, offering a subtle glimpse into the interior. This modern material extends its influence to the restaurant’s interior. The raw, adobe walls contrast with the shelves crafted from untreated sheet metal.
Beyond the realm of retail, the modernized industrial aesthetic finds expression in residential spaces through innovative applications of hollow bricks. The vertical alignment of these bricks forms a perforated pattern, allowing for increased natural light penetration and creating an illusion of depth, ultimately enhancing the perceived spaciousness of the living environment.
This raw material aesthetic continues into the realm of packaging, driven by a conscious effort to address both economic and environmental considerations. The prevalent use of inks and coatings in packaging not only escalates production costs but also compromises the eco-friendliness of the packaging. Consequently, there is a noticeable shift as more brands opt for reduced ink usage and simplified post-processing in their packaging designs.
This trend is particularly prominent among newer brands, gaining substantial recognition from younger consumers, as exemplified by Allbirds, a footwear brand. Allbirds adopts a refreshing approach by infusing playful and familiar aesthetics through earthy tones, dynamic fonts, and unique typography. Tech giants like Sonos and Xiaomi are aligning with this eco-conscious movement, utilizing their product silhouettes to create intrigue in their packaging solutions. An additional illustration is the SoFi cup, which ingeniously employs compostable sheet material to fashion a cup featuring an integrated lid, pushing the boundaries of sustainable packaging innovation.
In the tech realm, the iPhone14, Samsung Galaxy S23, and Magic Leap 2 introduced frosted glass and satin metals in a myriad of colored applications, showcasing the remarkable versatility of these finishes. Not only do they provide a visually appealing, high-end perception but also offer a tactile sensation that helps the user familiarize with these new materials.
Devices like Overtone, specializing in hearing aid technology, are also leveraging these finishes to achieve a seamless yet premium aesthetic. The frosted elements subtly reveal the internal components of the product, creating a nuanced sense of depth without compromising complete transparency. This trend of depth creation, observed previously in kitchen spaces, may witness a resurgence in 2024, evolving from the fluting patterns that dominated the design landscape in 2023.
The transition to 2024 comes with a notable surge in emphasis on material innovation, driven by a growing consumer demand for information about product materials and their associated benefits. This shift in mindset places textured materials at the forefront, particularly those that convey the material’s origin or offer practical advantages to users. An example from this year’s IFA Show in Berlin is Ctcase’s Boundless Liquid Silicone Phone Case, featuring a purposeful pattern designed to prevent phone slippage.
Exploring further innovation, Ampacet introduced the Secret Sea-Grit, a material with a subtle texture ingeniously incorporating aquatic waste to curtail plastic content. This sustainable approach replaces conventional calcium carbonate, usually sourced from limestone, with oyster shells. Also trending in a separate product category, French startup Ostrea showcased their washbasin tops, furniture panels, and coatings featuring marine terrazzo during Maison&Object. Comprising 35% mineral matrix and 65% seashell flakes, this innovative material not only underscores a commitment to sustainability but also introduces a unique texture, infusing character into the products.
In the approaching year, the convergence of individuality and material innovation holds the prospect of shaping a design horizon marked by efficiency, sustainability, and a contemporary industrial aesthetic. These emerging trends not only address the ever-changing preferences of consumers but also offer designers a diverse array of opportunities to craft spaces, products, and experiences aligned with the ethos of 2024.
To connect with our design team on the latest trends, color and material research, or design direction for your brand, reach out via our website.