What are trends based on and how do they arise? Why are groups of people drawn to a particular style or colour? How do certain themes become universal, exerting an appeal from Buenos Aires to Moscow and gaining a foothold in everyday life? Decorating trends often reflect a shared sensibility, kind of like a Polaroid of the zeitgeist. By studying them, we can imagine what tomorrow has in store.
Deciphering an ecosystem
Trends originate in the lively brains of trend hunters. These decoders observe people all over the world and draw conclusions based on the major artistic, cultural and social movements. They jot down and synthesize their observations and intuitions in what are called style notebooks. These valuable notebooks feature style boards, classified by theme, mood, colour and material, which can be applied in different spheres (fashion, design, interior decorating and cosmetics) and which influence the future choices of professionals in the various fields. .
How Mobilia creates collections
To lend a collection of furniture or accessories a distinctive personality, art directors and buyers will look at the dozens of emerging trends of the day and select those that are a good fit for Mobilia’s DNA. This is how a customized collection is created, with its unique mix of colours, fabrics, shapes and materials.
“Developing a product collection is a balancing act: you have to juggle existing and inspiring trends.”
Mobilia’s Purchasing Director Hugo Gingras
Buyers and art directors make magic by applying major trends to the brands they are associated with. They are our bridge between high style and everyday life.
“Developing a product collection is a balancing act: you have to juggle existing and inspiring trends, the brand’s DNA, and the inclinations of current and prospective customers,” explains Mobilia’s Purchasing Director Hugo Gingras.
Inspired by current events
News stories can spark major thematic trends and creative ideas. What’s going on in the world can have a definite impact on your living room décor, as the following examples illustrate:
The 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo
The announcement that the Olympic Games were to be held in Tokyo created an appetite for all things Japanese. Tourism skyrocketed, and interior design took a Japanese turn with the Japandi trend. What began as a venue for a sports competition became a lifestyle.
The practice of placing floral patterns on a black background originates in an ancient Japanese art. The delicately chiselled wood creates a play of natural light and complements the furniture that is designed low to the floor so as to be closer to the ground. Fashion too has yielded to oriental charms, giving rise to ample and graphic cuts and colour pairings such as pastels in combination with black or indigo.
One giant step for mankind
The 1969 moon landing had a strong impact on fashion and design in the 1960s. The 50th anniversary of that historic moment has breathed new life into the retrofuturist trend with its straight lines, hats inspired by astronauts’ helmets, and metallic materials of polished simplicity.
In the field of interior design this trend expresses itself in “mineral mania.” All the textures and colours of marble have come into play. Black and white are counterposed to create sharp contrasts. We are also seeing a return of traditional techniques and materials such as terracotta, ceramic, and enameled iron. The once reviled terrazzo has undergone a revival and is making a proud appearance on surfaces other than floors. Its flashy look suits many different settings.
A source of inspiration for millennia, nature is now in crisis. The cause of environmental protection is no longer limited to a small group of enlightened people. Designers, for example, are using their reputations to promote environmental defence.
In 2018, designer Marcel Wanders created the Museum of Extinct Animals for the Milan Furniture Fair (Salone del Mobile). His wallpapers have inspired many professionals from various fields, and animals have found their way onto our clothes.
The fate of the oceans depends on the survival of coral, victims of pollution and climate change. Pantone hit the right note in 2019 with its colour of the year, which shone a spotlight on the slow death of coral across the globe.
The future in hyperdrive
Only a few years ago, it took a while for trends to take hold. But social media changed all that: trends now have much shorter life cycles. Bloggers and influencers have become a conveyor belt for trends, accelerating their influence on our lives. These digital gurus build their audiences by giving decorating, fashion and design advice directly to users. They function as opinion leaders, boosting brand visibility and customer loyalty, driving sales, and shaping trends.
Today’s major trends are no longer the handiwork of a handful of professionals who call the shots. Now, social networks, international news and the arts are all a never-ending source of inspiration… It’s just a matter of feeding your curiosity and keeping your eyes and ears peeled!