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Key Design Trends at London Design Fair 2017

The Structure team at Bulletproof were amongst the hoards that flocked to this year’s London Design Fair to check out the latest design trends emerging from the world of contemporary furnishings, modern decor and luxury design. We’re always seeking inspiration from all disciplines within the creative industry, so we headed over to the Old Truman Brewery in East London to check out this four-day industry event that brings together 500 exhibitors from 28 countries.

London Design Fair searching for design trends

Year upon year, we are finding that artists and designers from all over the world are pushing the norms of convention, experimenting with unique finishes and a plethora of different types of materials, forms and processes. And this year was no exception! During our visit, we discovered a handful of up-and-coming themes and design trends, that will be sure to start creeping into the mainstream within the next few years. Here are our top picks…


The ’Drape Chair’, created by Christopher Stuart, received a lot of attention during the show. The chair was created using a CAD tool to digitally simulate how fabric would react if draped over blocky generic forms. The end result is very experimental and manages to convey an element of fluidity and motion. We’d expect to see an increasing number of products like this created purely using algorithms and digital design.

design trends - Digital Simulation


Everyday functional objects have been given a luxury upgrade. The rose gold finish – a material finish formally initiated by Apple within the world of consumer electronics, has managed to find its way and trickle down to normal domestic household objects. As a result, consultancies such as Beyond Object and Studio Soji are making the change, and creating a sense of ornamental value. It becomes a beautiful object that still provides functional quality.

design trends - Premium Normality Design trends - rose gold


Another trend that was identified is this unapologetic and raw aesthetic that allowed products to look authentic and stay true to their material origins. Fimbul Design has created a range of beautiful, oxidised and weathered lamp shades, reflecting their natural surroundings and environmental conditions. We thought this effect was truly impactful and unique.

Design trends - naturally raw Design trends - naturally raw - Fimbul Design


Iridescence and the element of light refraction featured heavily within the exhibition and could be seen amongst the work of John Hogan, Neo Craft and Elise Luttik. I can see this effect becoming popular with all ages in luxury through to mass market.

Design trends - iridescence


This ceramic vase collection by Olivia Walker is inspired by nature and reflects the form of bacterial organic growth. Due to its fluid motion, the design seems to capture and almost suspend a moment in time. Whether the vase looks like it is being engulfed or being completed by the linking of the bacterial arms, is totally subjective depending on the viewer.

Nude Glass had designed transparent tableware with small dispersions of colour within the glass. These mirror the aesthetic of scientific petri dishes, used for bacterial growth and this stripped back theme was definitely popular throughout the exhibition this year.

design trends - microbiology


For a long time we’ve been very used to a clean, uniform and polished aesthetic so popular within product and furniture design. There’s potential for a new wave of creatives to challenge and break this mould. Most notably, we loved Riqui Dai studio who have created furnishings in psychedelic colours and patterns. They had quite an impact at this year’s fair so we look forward to seeing where they take things next.

design trends - psychedelic colouration - Riqui Dai

Blog written by Sunil.