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Interior trends 2021: more living outdoors

15 Mar 2021

Angle lounge series from Cane-line (design: Foersom & Hiort-Lorenzen), © Cane-line

Angle lounge series from Cane-line (design: Foersom & Hiort-Lorenzen), © Cane-line

Which trends will influence outdoor design in 2021? A look at current developments in living.

The imm cologne has pinpointed six important interior trends for 2021. The international furniture and interiors fair dealt with questions that go well beyond the furnishing year: What effects is the corona pandemic having on interior lifestyle? Which trends are influencing furniture development and production? And what impact will the social changes that are noticeable everywhere have on consumer behaviour in the interiors market? Despite all the uncertainty of the current situation, the trend study seems to confirm one thing: the outdoors are increasingly becoming an integral part of living.

Natural Luxury

Being close to nature is becoming increasingly important to us: no new build is complete without a balcony, and apartments with access to a garden or terrace are highly sought after, especially in inner-city areas. Now these touchpoints with nature are becoming an integral part of the home. With the Indoor-Outdoor trend, today’s weatherproof outdoor furniture doesn’t only look as if it’s come straight from the living room, it’s being used there too! Its upmarket materials and high-tech textiles make it suitable for indoor use as well. In the upper price segment, it’s virtually impossible to tell the difference anymore, and the level of comfort offered by the new indoor-outdoor furniture is catching up fast too.

Loft urban collection from elho, © elho

Loft urban collection from elho, © elho

Connected Living

Can we use an app to grow herbs? Can a computer take care of plants? Smart applications are becoming more and more multifaceted, reliable and easy to use, and they can be tailored to occupants’ concrete needs with increasing precision. At the same time, smart technologies are increasingly becoming an integral part of the garden too. While the robotic lawnmower is trimming the lawn, a smart control system ensures that the green is watered as required. Smart plant cubes bring the concept of Vertical Farming into the home. Fully automated cabinets ensure perfect growth conditions for salad greens, leaf vegetables and herbs. The systems are automatically controlled via Cloud, and an app provides an insight into the growing process. It can also be used to order new seeds, which come complete with substrate.

Smart Plantcube from Agrilution, © Agrilution

Smart Plantcube from Agrilution, © Agrilution

Blurring Boundaries

The growing desire for boundary-free living is leading to overlapping realities that blur the lines between indoors and outdoors. Specialized products for areas with a specific function like the outdoor space are adapting their materials and aesthetic to the classic furniture and design canon; interiors are evoking a natural ambience. People’s expectation of their homes are changing rapidly. The merging of spaces is leading to a need for multifunctional furniture that either marks out certain areas or differentiates them from one another. Rather than separate rooms, modern apartments are more likely to have an open arrangement of spaces. Conservatories and attic conversions create light-flooded spaces, and big window fronts – ideally with a seamless transition to the outside space – create a visual and physical connection with the outdoors.

Outdoor living trend

The outdoor living trend has changed the furniture market. The “second living room” has been gaining importance for some years now. Regardless of whether they have a big garden or a small apartment: people are kitting out their balconies, patios and gardens and upgrading outdoor areas into fully fledged living space with quality outdoor furniture, clever furniture concepts, water-repellent fabrics and lighting. “Is that for indoors or outside?” you can’t help asking when you see the new garden and patio furniture. Because not even the design is guided by classic patio furniture anymore, but by what’s in the living room. The main thing is that it’s stylish. Conversely, the aesthetic of many a living room sofa seems to have been influenced by the simplicity of outdoor lounge furniture, bringing a breath of sunshine indoors as a result. The two types of living room are influencing one another and sometimes even swapping furniture with each other.

String System Outdoor from String Furniture, © String Furniture

String System Outdoor from String Furniture, © String Furniture

As a result of the corona crisis, the desire for a garden, a (roof) terrace, a balcony or a communal back garden is growing even stronger. Properties are increasingly being chosen for their “green” connections with nature and command a noticeably higher price when they come with a garden or roof terrace. According to the trend study by imm cologne, modern living in the future will be characterized even more by the openness of the floor plans and transparency between outside and inside: good prospects for outdoor living.

Author: Leif Hallerbach

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