The power of us: Be inspired by our key trend 'In It Together'
2020 was the year none of us could have predicted. It was the year that surprised us and challenged us in equal measure. But in the face of adversity, we found ourselves pulling together, reaping the benefits of a stronger sense of community and learning new ways to live, connect and consume.
When it came to ideas for our new fabric collections, we found ourselves having to find new ways to seek inspiration. With our usual design fairs a thing of the past, we had to turn to digital communities, online events and webinars to keep abreast of the rapidly changing design world. The result is our new Trends Book for 2021/2022 in which we've identified three key themes which we believe will enrich design thinking over the next two years.
For this blog post, we're focusing on our first trend, 'In It Together', which celebrates comfort, nostalgia and a simpler way of living – reflecting how the challenges of the last year have changed our lives.
Together we're stronger
'Community' became the buzzword for 2020 and for very good reason. With many of us feeling increasingly isolated in our homes, the need to connect with others became stronger than ever. As neighbours reached out to each other for support, and online communication proved that distance was no longer a barrier, being apart actually brought us closer together.
This new community feel fed into all aspects of our lives, leading to a simpler approach to living, connecting and consuming. Recent research in the UK showed that consumers are increasingly choosing to buy local, with 56% of those surveyed by Accenture saying they now either shop locally or buy more locally-sourced products.
Shoppers are also moving towards more environmentally-friendly, sustainable or ethical choices, with the majority saying they are likely to continue these behaviours post-pandemic.
Home is where the heart is
With many of us stuck indoors for weeks at a time, our homes have become more important than ever. The place where we live, work and spend time with our families has become our haven and precious refuge as we wait patiently for the storm to pass.
In the face of ongoing uncertainty, the emphasis has turned to comfort, with the sofa becoming the heart of the home. Corner sofas have seen a huge rise in sales, as have outsized couches with enough room for the whole family. Informality is the name of the game here, with demand rising for hardworking, stain-resistant fabrics that can cope with the wear and tear of family life.
Green issues are also at the fore when it comes to sofa trends for 2021.
Our eco-friendly, highly durable fabrics are proving increasingly popular and we're also seeing signs that consumers are keen to make sustainable choices such as opting for sofas made from FSC timber.
We have also been challenging ourselves around our eco-friendly and recycled fabrics, which we will discuss further in our next Trend Theme.
When it comes to colours for sofas, tones inspired by nature – such as the mossy greens and midnight blues in our new collections – are bang on trend. It's all about bringing the outside in and creating a luxurious, comforting sanctuary.
Look out for more about our sustainable, environmentally-friendly fabrics in our next trends blog post.
One of the key aspects of our 'In It Together' trend is an emphasis on natural materials and a slower, simpler pace of life. While the arrival of Covid-19 brought inevitable challenges, it also led to the rediscovery of simpler, nostalgic activities such as baking, knitting and crafts.
This homemade aesthetic is reflected in the current interiors trend for 'handcrafted' items such as rattan light fittings, wicker furniture and textured fabrics. This approach is also reflected in our fabric collections where you'll find natural cotton and linen blends as well as textured finishes such as slubs and on-trend bouclés.
Recent research in the UK showed that consumers are increasingly choosing to buy local, with 56% of those surveyed by Accenture saying they now either shop locally or buy more locally-sourced products.
Designed to mirror the natural world, the use of elements in the home such as greenery, linen and leather are huge news for interiors in 2021. The tactile nature of these textures brings comfort and reassurance, helping to console us in troubled times.
A bright future
When it comes to the colour palette for our 'In It Together' theme, the hues are very much rooted in nature. From neutral, stone-like greys to midnight blue and washed out lavender, the influence of the natural world is clear to see.
The yellows and greys featured in our new collections were actually selected before Pantone announced its Colours of the Year for 2021 – a combination of vivid 'Illuminating' yellow with 'Ultimate Gray' – but the colour experts' prediction aligns nicely with our decision to include uplifting, joyous tones.
"The union of an enduring Ultimate Gray with the vibrant yellow Illuminating expresses a message of positivity supported by fortitude,” says Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute. “Practical and rock solid, but at the same time warming and optimistic, this is a color combination that gives us resilience and hope."
Our vision is that the mood-enhancing colours of bright terracotta, mustard and plum in our 'In It Together' trend will bring much-needed joy, warmth and comfort into your home this year.