Within my previous company based research i began to look into more widely commercial companies dabbling within the realm of furniture like M&S, Next and IKEA as some examples.
IKEA pride themselves on ‘democratic design’: the right combination of form, function, quality, sustainability and low price. The products are mass produced and distributed all over the world, most of which are designed for domestic environments. However, sustainability is a real core value, through things like accessories LED bulbs etc and in furniture – cotton from sustainable resources – reducing the wastage within design is important e.g. the hollow legs on standard table are filled with wood chips and saw dust to reduce the material used.
Companies like M&S and Next, with furniture departments are very focused on aesthetic value in relation to consumption and sales. They have quite simple basic designs – using the textile material to change in order to fit a larger range of consumers within the market.Products are sold separately but as part of a set or collection, to encourage people to buy the whole range of furniture, and are unsustainable designs e.g. one function per product. Mainly mass/ batch produced identical items – with exceptions to upholstered items of textile changes. The designs of these companies i do really like, because they have a function and they do sell, and the items can solely make up an interior from one shop, however i noticed that a lot of the designs from these respective companies are very similar, due to the likelihood of their design having been based on the prediction of up coming trends.
“archived and overlooked ideas are reconsidered, and the natural and high-tec are juxtaposed. Designs are simplified, promoting less is more aesthetic, resulting in products that are timeless and built to last, and sustainable by essence”
“soothing colour palettes , acoustic materials and soft touch textures create moments of calm and serenity in design”
“Scandinavian design, mid-century style the industrial look are updated for 2017”
“MID-CENTURY DESIGN; new design faithfully recreate or loosely interpret key elements of mid- century style, including clean lines , boxed geometries, pastel hued scalloped shapes, dark woods and caned paneling. Wooden sideboards stand on delicate legs, armchairs and sofas feature dark wood armrests, and coffee tables combine organic forms, wood grain and glimmers of metallic detailing.”
“objects celebrate history with shapes and surface that evoke the past …forms evoke the grandeur of ancient architecture, yet colours and material maintain a timeless look.”
“the artisan approach remains strong with new makers and established makers celebrated across the fair”
“primitive-inspired totem shapes and rounded bubbles lead the key trends for shape”
“the trend for softer interiors evolves into a neat direction with an engineered look. Pieces have a soft yet hard appeal. Corners are smoothed surfaces are matte, but object retain an architectural look.”
“shapes shave and engineered quality; whether soft and curved or hard and sculpted, shapes are neat, as though drawn by a machine, bridging the gap between crafts and technology.”
“technology and craft merge. Products look as delicate as handmade products, but are in fact 3D printed, and vice versa – handmade products take on a mathematical precision.”