15 October 2018
London Design Festival (LDF18), is an annual celebration of creativity, drawing in the world’s greatest designers, thinkers, practitioners, retailers and educators. The Trend Bible team attended various trade shows and events during the Festival, analysing emerging trends across consumers and designers. Here are our three key highlights from the festival.
We saw designers suggest new possibilities for materials, during both the construction process, as well as the final outcome. TRANS-FORM, at Mint Gallery, exhibited over 60 material-forward designers. Marco Guazini showcased a new, sustainable composite called Marwoolus, a combination of natural wool, discarded from the industry, and reclaimed marble powder.
Wood in process, by Envisions, in collaboration with Finsa, expanded the possibilities of working with MDF and particle board. A great example of how designers are pushing the boundaries between the finished product and creative process.
‘The Future Starts Here’ at the V&A, speculated about the increasing use of technology and how it will affect the way we live, learn and even love, encapsulated within the thought-provoking question; “We are all connected but do we feel lonely?”.
As homes gradually fill with smart machines that manage our lives, will we begin to see this as a surrogate to companionship and affection? For example, Snoo the smart sleeper, is a cot that rocks your baby to sleep. Designed by Happiest Baby and Yves Behar, this product targets the issue of exhaustion for parents, however, does it point to a future where our earliest experiences of comfort are entrusted in technology?
Addressing the social stigma around eating alone in public, Marina Van Goor’s restaurant designed for one creates a pleasant solitude rather than a lonely dining experience.
Seen as a strong overarching theme at LDF18, the use of recycled plastics continues to grow in importance. Nominated as the material of the year by London Design Fair, designers elevated the possibilities of waste plastics and championed support for plastic alternatives. We saw a return to traditional, natural fibres such as sisal as well as experimental materials, such as totomoxtle, a veneer made from Mexican corn husks.
The plastic-free supermarket aisle designed by Plastic Planet and Made Thought was also seen at Beazley Designs of the Year 2018. Cutting through the noise of confusing symbols, this aisle only stocks products packaged in compostable bio-materials as well as traditional materials including glass and cardboard. The simple and direct logo provides a cue for shoppers to easily identify plastic free packaging and to buy responsibly.
More and more designers are taking on the responsibility for sustainable design and proving that recycled materials do not need to look ‘eco’. From the use of natural pigments through to unconventional discarded materials, designers will have a positive influence on consumers lifestyles and behaviours.
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