Interior design trends of 2011: 'emotional austerity', 're-balancing'...

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The Independent Online

According to experts, the big design trends of 2011 will stem from consumers reassessing what they need to live comfortably, seeking innovation, finding a local balance in a global world and searching for personalized products.


The book Interior Trends 2011 was recently released by IMM Cologne; compiled by the expert committee of the international trend board at IMM Cologne, this latest in a series of annual publications predicts that people are questioning what they need to live well, demanding innovation not re-imagination, addressing issues of balance and seeking products with personality.

The interior trends of 2011

1. Emotional Austerity

IMM Cologne believes that as a result of the financial crisis people are questioning what it is they need to live well. This is leading to the emergence of simplistic, formal or severe designs that combine the basic and old with the modern and the high-tech.

2. Surprising Empathy
Consumers are no longer content with re-imagined concepts and are instead forcing designers to push boundaries and create truly innovative new products. Aesthetically this trend is characterized by angular or folded structures and ash greys or blacks brightened with dashes of yellows or orange.

3. Re-balancing
IMM Cologne believes that consumers have grown tired of being bombarded by constant marketing and instead are searching for products that are personal and create a sense of home in an increasingly globalized world. Within this trend there is a preference for simple angular structures and soft natural materials such as wool.

4. Transforming perspectives
Designers are beginning to question the boundaries between art and design, the virtual world and the real world - leading them to propose radical new designs that experiment with archaic forms and nature. These designs are characterized by glass and metal complemented with hard and soft plastics that combine to form a changeable surface.

IMM Cologne is an international showcase of the latest household and furniture designs. 2011's event will feature a specialized section dedicated to young, emerging designers around the world.