Great Insight into Future Trends

Jason Laity shares his thoughts about a BDAV CPD Seminar on future trends, directions and styles

BDAV Member, Jason Laity, from Synthesis Design + Display Pty Ltd, shares his thoughts about the August 2010 BDAV CPD Seminar.

Crystal balls are as rare as hen’s teeth and when you can find one, it rarely provides insight into the future, just simply adds decoration to a shelf.

However, the most recent CPD night featuring Kathy Demos and Samantha Eades was quite the opposite; a real insight into the future trends, directions and styles that will influence and shape the look and feel of the built environment in the years to come.

Kathy Demos’ presentation was full of powerful images and examples of the styles and origins of trends to come.

The overriding theme of Kathy’s presentation was my home and the various influences that may shape the look, feel and origins of design including:


My home is a nest

Images of basket weaving, threaded fabrics and wire all grouped to express the concept of a light but strong feel were the foundation of this trend.

My home is my earth

The influence of elements such as terracotta and a return to bricks and concrete in architecture. Examples ofs natural design influences in nature such as termite hills and their inherent qualities helped to illustrate parallels of this trend in nature.

My home is my hideout

The design of structures and buildings that mimic and follow the natural contours of the earth and surrounds. How you can blur the lines between natural and built environment, summarised as the chameleon effect.


My home is my landscape:
The impact of how we design and the effects on the environment, drawing inspiration from nature, the example of how a beaver will create changes to an eco structure that benefits all living creatures, not just one species.

My home is my hive:
The power of unity in numbers, how we should consider the design of multi-person dwellings, the way nature creates environments like bee hives where bees live and work as individuals but support each other in the same environment.

My home is my cocoon:
The development of built structures that take the form of pods, cylinders and unconventional living spaces inspired by the wings of bats and caterpillars.

My home is my web:
Inspired by the incredible strength, flexibility and form of a spider’s web. Images of wire, fabricated and highly detailed structures illustrated this trend and the look that is starting to emerge overseas with buildings currently being built.

My home is my armour:
In a world of volatility and aggression, this trend has emerged in the form of structures and built forms that are heavily clad with shields, timber erratically installed subconsciously creating a do not approach look. The over-riding feel is structures that cover and protect us.

My home is my masterpiece:
The final trend signified through the example of a male Bower bird and how they collect beautiful objects to decorate their nest to attract the female species. Images of built environment examples from Europe and beyond illustrated the strength of this trend.

All in all, Kathy’s presentation was inspiring, challenging and beautifully presented.

Samantha Eades’ presentation was far more targeted than Kathy’s, looking at trends of two key living spaces, specifically the bathroom and kitchen.

Samantha’s trend forecasting was inspired by the recent Milan Design Exhibition showcasing styles, trends and product innovation.

Much of the bathroom trends are geared around bathrooms becoming more than functional spaces but havens for relaxing and nurturing. The pre GFC trends of flamboyance, opulence, and elegance are now shifting to more organic, functional style with an emphasis on steam rooms, large freestanding baths, seamless bench tops and sinks.

New technologies such as gravity casting will start to change the design possibilities for manufacturers and improve the frequency of new product launches across the world.

Kitchen design looking forward will remain open with shared living spaces, keeping the family together, even when everyone is doing something individual. The kitchen will remain the hub of the home.

High quality materials and craftsmanship, sand blasted laminates, engineered surfaces, stainless steel edges, recessed handles, cantilevered serveries, suspended cabinets, internal and external LED lighting are the emerging trends in the detail and design of kitchen spaces. Concealed appliances, hiding the look of all functional elements of the kitchen when not in use. Kitchen design will remain honest with only highlights of colour.

Samantha’s presentation provided a wonderful showcase of images and examples of how kitchens and bathrooms will evolve in years to come.