Design trends worthy of consideration
Unoform kitchen counter
Photos courtesy of vendors
Heavy duty charm
Who doesn’t walk into a kitchen like this UnoForm design (above) and say, “Oh, and by the way, I’m staying for breakfast”? What child wouldn’t store all of his or her toy cars in the new garage under Mommy or Daddy or Aunt Miriam’s chopping station? The suspended kitchen counter set up against a floor to ceiling kitchen window lightens the heavy, utilitarian reality of any kitchen. Even I could probably learn to cook in a space that manages to make food production feel like a lifetime of just desserts. A+ for happy space inspiration.
Gervasoni patio set
New cushions, new life
No matter how deep in the woods you find yourself, logistically or metaphorically, create a “C’mon, it’ll be great” atmosphere through two design elements: profile and color. The Gervasoni line, for example, is designed wide and low, providing the invitation to kick back and contemplate whatever under the radar ideas get mused on best in superbly furnished lodges and patios. But a just as critical, if more subtle, transformation is in the upholstery, updated here with cool deep greens and the yellow-green chartreuse. This lets the visitor know that no, the cushions have not been stored in a basement since the last time Grandfather went duck hunting. Updated patterns and color accents send the message that these are new. So, go head, the air is safe. A+ for the ability to chillax.
It was a bit of dilemma this year, trying to get a handle on where design movements were heading. I was two seconds from giving up and ordering a set of concrete pillowcases when I saw it. Very daring. Very exciting. Imagine combining the Belle Époque optimism and flounce of Moulin Rouge with an overstuffed Jackie O pillbox hat, blended into an American Gothic degree of pitchfork and buttoned-upness. Now mix and match. Go ahead. This year, we all have permission to experiment with the seemingly impossible. There are velvets and fringes, late Victorian curves and plumpness, puckers and tucks like the old leather Chesterfield couches, set within a dialogue of librarian-determined design lines. Even colors share space, like violets and lavenders. If sky blue is your favorite, that works too, even more trending if you adopt or showcase a fondness for repetitive patterning. A+ for plush and nerve.
If the classic Eames is the king of all lounge chairs (which it is), then Bruno Mattson’s Jetson (at left) is the queen. My favorite, it is like a Baby Björn for big people—weird but true. Although there is no getting around the fact that it looks like it just walked out of its famous sixties cartoon namesake, the chair is a respected enough classic with enough design element crossovers to work in any room décor. Get the ottoman, and set your computer in your lap. The curve, the height of the arms, the neck support, and the angle allow me to work six-to-ten hour stretches at a time, day after day. And yes, for some of us, not having to move much when in hyper-focus mode is a great thing. Best in class.
Back to the plants
A patio dining area based on the material used to construct racing cars (shown on page 25) may not seem soft and cozy, but some hard surfaces still make you wish breakfast would never end. Maybe it is the wide open curve of the armchairs, or the fact that a lush forest lies on the other side of wide open windows. For those of us who struggle with indoor foliage, the takeaway may be to do what you can this year to invite outside nature inside, at least a bit.
For more design trends, read this month's article by Catherine, "Cozying up to hygge, lagom, and cosagach."