Wonder, Explore, Master and Reflect: The Drivers of Product Design Research at Finsa.

Over the last two years our global teams have worked together to analyse and define the ways in which we live and consume, enabling an understanding of how social and cultural changes can impact the world around us. We have therefore outlined certain trends and driving factors that provide context for our product design research. Paying close attention to industry influences such as technology innovations, interior design advances and architectural projects, we consider how these factors will influence and inspire the design industry, and more specifically hard surfaces of the future.

Identifying four States of Mind & Matter, we discover how we firstly, Wonder and embrace the unknown. We then Explore the world and push the boundaries. Moving forwards, we then look to Master our craft and Reflect on what has been before, extracting only the essential. What follows is only a taste of what you can find in the full States of Mind & Matter, Trendbook 2018-19.

Wonder: Embracing Change

Prismania Chair / Elise Luttik / Photo: Lisa Klappe eli5e.nl.com

Referencing new environments, Wonder embraces change with a fluid transience that embodies the positive steps we are taking forward. As we live in a world in constant transition, this theme has a ‘can do’ attitude that sees these changes as an opportunity to reinvent and re-form with our minds firmly set in the future. Referencing innovative technical themes and architecture that enables flexibility between the tangible and the unknown, Wonder encourages exploration into new worlds. This trend is a dreamland, with a futuristic and optimistic undertone which the colour palette mirrors. Ethereal tones reference an interest in translucency and light effects. The barely-there tints mix with tones of a definitive positivity in a story which echoes our need to discover and revel in the undefined future.

Explore: Celebrating Diversity and Breaking Boundaries

Responding to the increasing presence of minimalist design, Explore has a contrasting bold and maximalist approach. This is a lively and triumphant story in which diversity is celebrated. Breaking boundaries, this trend has joyful and positive roots that challenge design to go beyond the norm. Referencing diverse cultures from the increasingly globalised world, this story puts aside inhibitions and embraces different ways of living by appealing to all the senses with a colourful and upbeat approach. Explore is inspired by surface treatments that add enhancing effects such as abundant pattern, hectic and lively images, and most importantly, statement colours. The colour palette thrills the senses with vibrant shades that stir up excitement. This story focuses on the celebration of life and embraces confident design, full of colour and resolute in spirit.

Marie Rime marierime.tumblr.com

Master: Seeking Inspiration in Nature, Raw Materials and Traditional Craft

MIX Magazine / © Colour Hive 2017 All rights reserved

This story abandons the clumsy, folksy connotations of craft and instead adopts a high end, luxurious approach with materials that are subtle, elegant and refined. Master embraces the extraordinary heritage of traditional craft, looking to achieve levels of technical perfection by hand, which would not be possible to replicate in mass production. Master is inspired by the world of couture and essentially this is a trend about escaping from the outside world. Seeking inspiration in nature, raw materials and craft that abandons anything rough-and-ready, this trend instead focuses on exquisite finishes and refined aesthetics. Colours are soft, sensual yet rich with depth, inspired in part by the natural world but chosen for their stealth luxe connotations. This theme offers only the most exclusive and quality options for design.

Reflect: Paring Down to the Essential

Cocooning and comforting, Reflect is a trend that encompasses quiet and considered themes in a natural and stripped back aesthetic. This story sets out to discover how minimalist design can make us re-evaluate our appreciation of colour and inherent beauty; removed of any extraneous meaning and reverting back to experiencing tones and nuances on an instinctive level. This mirrors the current mindset of consumers, both health and design conscious, searching for sustainability and moving away from throwaway culture. The essence of this trend is distilled into a palette grounded by a collection of measured, muted tones. The shades have soft and inviting qualities, offering a much-needed refuge. Reflect explores a need to simplify and pare down to only the essential, echoing perfectly with the aesthetic of the story.

MIX Magazine / © Colour Hive 2017 All rights reserved

We invite you to Wonder, Explore, Master and Reflect as you discover the materials and colours within this trendbook and be inspired to use the information for your projects.

Also, you can get in contact here with Finsa Ireland's team and share with us any project you are working on and see how we can help.