Design, Interiors & Lifestyle Blog
Design, Interiors & Lifestyle Blog

I’ve just returned from an amazing trip to the imm Cologne 2020 furniture trade fair, with the Association of German Furniture industry.

This is a post of what I’ve spotted that I liked and what I see as potential NEW trends for 2020 and beyond.

Trends are trends, they can be a passing fancy. Hence I thought I’d show you what my favourite finds were first.

These are the things that I would buy and want to have in my home. ( Whether I can afford them, is a total different story. But one can dream right?)

FOR MY HOME. I think I’ve gone to pastel heaven here. This Vlinder sofa  designed by Helle Jongerius for vitra is just so me. I absolutely adore it. The overlay has been masterfully weaved in the prettiest of pastel hues and patterns. It’s super soft and comfortable too.

The beautiful workmanship explains the hefty price at nearly £7000. Totally out of my reach, but you never know, maybe one day. imm cologne 2020 schonbuch I’m not one for large heavy furniture. I want beautiful portable design that can be multifunctional.

This year, I’m planning on re-doing my daughter’s bedroom, and this minty green table and bench look perfect for the small dressing table that I have been seeking for her space.

It could be a little study desk too.

It’s by one of my favourite German furniture brands, Schönbuch. How cute is this little kitchen designed and decorated by Mut design, a Spanish design studio founded by the amazing designers, Alberto Sánchez and Eduardo Villalón.

What I particularly had my eye on was that dustpan and broom called ‘Cane’ by Northern, and designed by Gridy.

I love how it’s one unit together. No more hunting for that dustpan and picking up that broom that keeps falling over. imm cologne 2020 normann copenhagen wooden puffins Those who follow me over on Instagram, must know that I’m rather partial to home decor accessories.

Of course, not just any accessories. They have to be cute, timeless and a potential design classic.

What do you think of this wooden puffin designed by Sigurjón Pálsson for Normann Copenhagen?

I actually spotted real life puffins when I was out whale watching in Tofino, Canada during my last Summer holiday. They are so cute. Talking about whale watching, I absolutely love this wooden whale from vitra. It matches the puffin well, don’t you think? imm cologne 2020 salt and pepper lamps tobias grau You can never have too much mood lighting at home right?

These salt and pepper lamps by Tobias Grau provide such comfort lighting. From comfort lighting, to something more glamorous, I was absolutely transfixed by these stellar grape lights designed by Sebastian Herkner for Pulpo. Here’s a closer up view. Whilst we are on the topic of Pulpo products, I wouldn’t mind having this trio of glass coffee tables in my home.

They are called aspa tables and are designed for Pulpo by mut design. Here they are at the Das Haus exhibition at imm Cologne. Now, for a bit of practical, functional design.

I’ve been searching high and low for stylish shoe storage for my home.

Alas, I found something suitable, in this shoe cabinet by Tojo, a German furniture brand with expertise in storage solutions that can be multi-functional. Here’s a little taster of what Tojo is all about.

If you turned that rocking chair on the left over, it becomes a side table, and on another side it’s a child’s desk.

Anyway, hope you’ve enjoyed seeing my favourite finds. Now for the spotted trends at imm Cologne 2020.

THE NEW COLOURS – Mint, Pinks, Peach, Terracota, Rust and Browns. Pinks in dusky and peachy hues were prominent, as were soft brown shades and rusty terracota hues.

These wall storage units are by Schonbuch. Mint green is big news. Since it’s one of my favourite colours, it hasn’t ever gone out of fashion as far as I am concerned. These beautiful rattan chairs from Thonet sum up the pastel hues we will be seeing more of this season. Berry was also evident, although not really a colour to my liking. This Normann Copenhagen lounge illustrates the new rusty terracota brown colours of this season. I think mustard will be going out of trend, being replaced by these new shades.

After looking at all these colours, I’m going to go one step ahead to predict that peach and perhaps a light turquoise may be on the horizon in 2021.

COMFORT imm cologne 2020 No longer is it just design that is important, the discerning buyer want comfort. I often use the analogy to shoes – if you are going to pay for a Laboutin, it might as well be comfortable.

These chairs with removable washable covers are super comfortable and are by the German brand bruehl. imm cologne 2020 vitra sofa Which brings me back to this sofa by vitra. The price befits its comfort factor.

INTERACTION and DIGITAL DETOX It’s not untrue to say that our mobile phones have nowadays become an appendage of our arm.  Everywhere you look, people are staring at their screens, me included.

I’ve noticed a design movement to disrupt that habitual cycle. It’s all about rediscovering interaction and to talk to each other.

This Hemicycle range of sofa,by Phillipe Nigro for Ligne Roset, aims to encourage conversation. This is the Paradise bird chair by Wittmann. The designer, Luca Nichetto wanted the revolving chair to be a simple gesture for turning around to communicate with one another.

MIDCENTURY MODERN Although I’m only showing you one example here, there were many examples of midcentury modern furniture adaptations at the fair. I loved these chairs by Stouby.

UPCYCLED and SUSTAINABILITY imm cologne 2020 Perhaps this is not a new trend, but certainly an important one with all that climate change going on globally, so I’ll mention it in this post.

These wooden wall hooks are by Ton, an affiliated brand to Thonet. They are the offcuts from the furniture manufacturing processes. Such a clever idea to reuse and repurpose.

CRAFTSMANSHIP. Craftsmanship is so important in design. A beautifully made piece of furniture with more behind it. The carvings of this Mati chair by Herkner for Zanat, were inspired by the microscopic view of the cellular structure of wood.

Again, this makes an important point about sustainability. Another beautiful piece is this walnut veneer cabinet of drawers designed to celebrate Kettnaker’s 150th anniversary, using a combination of traditional craft and modern 3D laser technology.

MIRRORS imm cologne 2020 trends predictions I noticed at the fair that mirrors were taking a more flamboyant stance this year.

This yellow 3 dimensional mirror is by Shoenbuch. imm cologne 2020 ferm living Rather than a perfect circle, for example, there is a little assymetry, such as this mirror spotted at Ferm Living.

MODULAR and CUSTOMISABLE imm cologne 2020 interlubke shelving With urbanisation and space shortage, customisable modular furniture is becoming increasingly important to accommodate our changing living needs.

This elegant modular shelving is from Interlübke.

ZUHAUSESEIN imm cologne 2020 I thought I’d show you the winning photo entries being exhibited at imm cologne, of which I was one of the judges.

You can read more about them here.

Finally, I do hope you’ve enjoyed this trends post at imm Cologne 2020. I had so much fun spotting all the new furniture and designs that will soon be hitting our high streets. If you are interested in seeing the stands we visited on the Design tour, do take a look at this video. It also gives you a flavour of what imm Cologne looks like.

Have a lovely week.

( All photos are by Little Big Bell. This is a pais partnership post with the association of German furniture industry for imm Cologne 2020.).

Winners of the VDM home and interiors photo competition.

Hope you’ve all had a lovely weekend. I don’t know if you can recall, a few weeks ago, I announced a home and interiors photo competition in collaboration with the Association of German Furniture industry.

They received a total 232 entries from 19 countries, and here are the 10 winners.

The winner for the Outdoor Living category is Silvia Ferrando from Italy ( above).

How cute is that little dog and outdoor space? Next up, is the winner for the Tiny Living category, Karst Rauhé from the Netherlands.

It’s brilliant how Karst has been able to incorporate a living room, dining space and bedroom into a small space, without compromising on style.

Absolutely love those on trend cane dining chairs too. This is Agata Dimmich’s winning Hallway photo. Super stylish and almost like a piece of still life art. Next, is this pink kitchen by a very green fingered owner, Mike Klar from Germany.

He is the winner of our kitchen photo competition category. Doesn’t this photo scream adorable? Love all the textures and likewise its cosy feel. Therefore very Hygge right?

This is the Relaxed Sleeping category winner, Anastasia Benko from Germany. This is such a pretty living room, with midcentury modern styling and pops of colours.

It belongs to the winner of the Living Room category, Roger Lemoyne from Canada,. What I would give, to lie here for a relaxing bath and hence be able to gaze out into nature.

This gorgeous bathroom photo belongs to Alex Schäler, also the winner of The Bathroom category. First of all, this is a kitchen of dreams, due to its beautiful pastel hue, bright skylight and gorgeous wooden floor, but most of all, I adore the fun little swing.

This space belongs to Elizabeth Barrett, from the USA, and she is the winner of the Living with Children category. How fabulous is it to be able to work from home surrounded by all this wonderful greenery? This is the winning shot by Vicson Chan Chua for the Working at Home category. If I were a kid again, I would so covet this outdoor play house. The winner of the Other Forms of Living category is Pepper Schmidt from Germany.

So, that finally concludes the 10 winners of the photo competition. Each winner will be awarded with a wonderful piece of German design, get a trip to Cologne and have their photo exhibited at the imm Cologne fair next year.

Furthermore, I hope you’ve enjoyed these inspirational pictures from the photo competition.

Finally, have a lovely week all.

( All photography are the copyright of the respective listed owners from the interiors photo competition. This is a paid partnership post with the association of the German Furniture Industry VDM ).

This week marks the start of a much anticipated event for me, the London Design Festival 2019.

Back in May, Sir John Sorrell, the Chairman of London Design Festival, invited 10 of Europe’s most exciting designers to create a ‘legacy’ piece of design, in collaboration with London’s top cultural leaders.

Most noteworthy, all 10 of the designers used American red oak, a sustainable wood source for their projects.

All the pieces will most certainly be on display for public viewing during London Design Festival 2019.

9 of them will be on show in the Sculpture Gallery of the Victoria & Albert Museum, and one will be outside the Natural History Museum from 14-22 September 2019.

Below are the 10 exciting collaborations : This is Tomoko Azumi of TNA Design Studio.

Kwame Kwei-Armah OBE, the Artistic Director of the Young Vic asked her to make him something that he could also pass on to his grandson.

He wanted something for his garden, inspired by the slave ships that brought his ancestors from Africa to the Caribbean. London Design Festival 2019 Legacy In response, Azumi created Au.

She used thin slats of American red oak, steam-bent into shape, to create a boat structure.

I love its simplicity and symmetry.  It would be a wonderful space to sit with the family, and perhaps read a book together. Sir Ian Blatchford, Director and Chief Executive of the Science Museum Group, commissioned Marlène Huissoud (above) to create a beehive for the Science Museum. Subsequently, with the help of the craftspeople at Benchmark, ‘Beehave’ was handcrafted, and blackened using a scorching technique.

Huissoud and her team spent over 100 hours in Paris adding the tactile engraving details to the surface of this beehive using a pyrograph. Alex Beard CBE, Chief Executive of the Royal Opera House collaborated with designer Terence Woodgate to create two sofas, named Duo. London Design Festival 2019 Here is Duo.

Doesn’t it just look so elegant?

I love it for its contemporary clean lines, and similarly for its serenity. Tristram Hunt, Director of the Victoria and Albert Museum, was paired with the Jasper Morrison Studio.

He commissioned Morrison to create a set of two chairs and a table. Here it is and it’s called Fugu.

Aren’t those edges so smooth and perfectly sculpted?

These pieces are definitely in line with the current trend of circles and curves in furniture design.

I do love how that red oak grain is coming through too. Martino Gamper (above) was paired with Tamara Rojo, artistic director of the English National ballet.

Rojo wanted a piece that reflected her lifelong love of music, and would house her extensive vinyl collection. Here’s the musical shelf created for Rojo’s living room.

Gamper used a combination of fumed red oak to create the horizontal shelves and a lighter veneer on the upright components to create an angled grain direction.

It’s absolutely stunning. Above all, a future design classic.

I wouldn’t mind having it as a shelf for my hardback Design book collection. Here’s Jack Mama and Nina Tolstrup of Studiomama. I’ve previously met Nina, when she created the Built by All project for MINI Living.

They worked with Hans Ulrich Obrist, the artistic director of the Serpentine gallery on this project.

Obrist believes in the important role of postcards and likewise the revival of penmanship in the digital age. Studiomama created these gorgeous post boxes from the red oak as part of their brief.

The large post box will be located outside the gallery’s front door and the smaller one in the book shop.

I can’t wait to see them up close. This is Juliet Quintero.

Sir Johnn Sorrell, Chairman of London design Festival, commissioned her to create a lookout seat for the garden of his country home. London Design Festival 2019 The seat is shaped like a bird’s nest and will be placed next to a pond, for sunset viewing and contemplation. The red oak planks were thermally modified, therefore making them more durable for outdoor use.

Wish I could sit here and view the sky. Designer Max Lamb was commissioned by Dr Maria Balshaw, Director of Tate, to create a multifunctional dressing screen. London Design Festival 2019 So, here is what Max came up with and it’s called Valet.

It’s a free standing screen that incorporates a mirror and storage space.

He exploited the porosity of the red oak by pushing teal blue dye into its surface. It looks so effective doesn’t it? Iwona Blazwick OBE, Director of the Whitechapel Gallery, commissioned Yael Mer and Shay Alkalay of Raw Edges to create a bookstand.

Books were of great importance to Blazwick,and similarly to the Whitechapel gallery. London Design Festival 2019 The bookshelf, named Wooden Hinge, will be used to award the gallery’s annual Richard Schlagman Art Book Awards and house new library catalogues.

The bookstand folds on red oak, rather than metal hinges.

Wooden Hinge will live in the Whitechapel Gallery’s bookshop. London Design Festival 2019 Sebastian Cox, above, was commissioned by Amanda Nevill CBE, CEO of the British Film Institute to create a pen holder, a desk and a chair.

Nevill wanted a piece that represented her love of writing and moreover storytelling. London Design Festival 2019 Therefore, Cox created Writer’s Collection, with angled curves matching the perspective lines on the BFI mezzanine, where it will be located.

Underneath the leather panels is a special compartment for the pen case and a paper scroll.

Aren’t these 10 pieces of design so inspirational? I certainly love them.

In short, I’m looking forward to seeing them at London Design Festival 2019, and after that, at their designated public locations.

Have a lovely day.

( photography provided by friends and co)

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