The British Design Awards: uncovering the latest design trends

08th November

Readers of Elle Decoration and The Daily Telegraph have voted for the winners of the British Design Awards. They voted for six from a shortlist of 30 and the result is a relatively eclectic bunch. But, together, they provide as good a snapshot as any into current design trends. What patterns do you see? My first thought is that the move from less-is-more minimalism to a richer design palate (if not quite ‘maximalism’) is in full swing. The Olympic torch and ‘Crystal Bulb’ light are clear examples of this.

Thinking a little more, it seems to me that soul is in resurgence. This follows a period of design winners who, while being beautiful, were also somewhat cold. Perhaps familiarity breeds contempt, but years of clean crisp photographs of iThis-and-Thats was starting to feel like looking at the monolith from 2001; impressive, but not overly charming. The sweep of the Velodrome and the élan of the torch suggest that modernity and personality are going more hand in hand.

Which is to say that, while soul might employ craftsmanship, it’s not a folksy kind of design language we are getting, but a warmer tone of voice perhaps? And there is also room for arts and crafts sensibilities, as evidenced by the Harvest Hare wallpaper. It chimes with the current vogue for all things cosy and Edward Bawden-esque. Those were my observations – what are yours?

1 Comment

  1. The Big Picture | News 16.11.12

    November 16, 2012 4:39 pm

    [...] From borderline ‘maximalism’ to the resurgence of soul – read about the latest design trends according to JKR here. [...]

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