Circularity, neuro-aesthetics among the top trends of the “future of the home” – Sourcing Journal

In a post-pandemic world, the home has become a haven, and consumer buying habits and preferences have evolved to reflect that mindset more than ever. That’s one of the key takeaways from trend forecaster Fashion Snoops’ new Future of Home report.

The forecasters at Fashion Snoops – which examines micro and macro trends in societies and sectors such as beauty, fashion and home – found that a range of themes, from sustainability to wellness, are converging to create this new idea of ​​home.

“Items in the home are getting smarter, and not necessarily in a technical sense, but mostly in terms of the thoughtfulness that makes our lives easier,” said Jaye Anna Mize, Vice President, Home, Fashion Snoops. “Mindfulness and preservation are becoming more of a priority as consumers become more aware of the overall impact of goods on our daily lives and values.”

Brain-focused design

One of the emerging trends shaping design, according to Mize, is neuroaesthetics. The concept explores the impact of sensory design aspects such as color, light, texture and sound to create spaces that promote greater well-being for their occupants.

“Sensory design will redefine immersive interiors,” said Mize. “We’re starting to see the focus on highly sensory design that supports the flow of all five senses to consider when designing new spaces to evoke feelings of coziness, comfort, tranquility or engagement.”

This design approach also takes into account the needs of neurodivergent people, who often react differently to stimuli than neurotypical people. The elimination or insertion of certain textures, sounds, etc. contributes to this more thoughtful approach to design.

“Accessibility has become a hot topic in design as we see conversations about diversity, equity and inclusion really changing the consumer landscape,” said Mize. “We’re more aware of how a space can impact those who are neurodivergent.”

Mize said that scientific research being conducted at universities like Harvard will add credence to the idea of ​​how elements of design can affect well-being.

“For the more modern product maker or interior designer, the principles of neuroaesthetics seem obvious,” she said. “We in the design industry feel like we understand how color, shape and texture affect living spaces. The key to this movement, however, is this scientific support that gives real rationale to design methods.”

Smarter Homes

Technology also plays a role in improving well-being in the home. The idea of ​​a “smart home” has evolved from a room full of devices and screens to a more discreet technology that analyzes data to make life easier and more convenient.

“Data is used to improve homeowners’ everyday experiences,” said Aurora Hinz, home strategist, Fashion Snoops. “From mattresses tracking your sleep cycle to refrigerators tracking your grocery list, fluidity with technology in the home ensures that any device you want works with the rest of your life.”

And while there has been a backlash against technology in the wake of the pandemic among the social media and Zoom-weary masses, this new kind of connectivity is designed to quietly improve, rather than interfere with, life.

“The rise of the connected home comes at a time when consumers are less craving for technology in their everyday lives, especially among younger generations,” said Hinz. “These emerging home technologies blend into the background of our lives, creating more efficient solutions and not adding to our ongoing list of chores.”

Sustainable solutions

And while consumers want to improve their own lives, they also want to improve the state of the planet. Demand for sustainable homewares continues to grow, with younger generations in particular pushing for circularity, carbon negativity and low-waste or zero-waste lifestyles.

This drive for more positive environmental impact plays out in the cottage industry in a number of ways. One is exploring new or reinvented natural materials that can take the place of man-made products that leave a larger carbon footprint.

“Interest in alternative architectural and design uses of hemp, cork, algae and other living elements is really gaining momentum thanks to our move towards circular materiality,” said Mize. “Future-proof design through the use of regenerative, autonomous and climate-adaptive solutions is becoming increasingly important.”

Also important? craftsmanship. And this focus on craftsmanship and artisans serves multiple purposes. First, it forces us to slow down and appreciate the process of handcrafting an item, often using natural or renewable materials and a reduced carbon footprint. At the same time, the growing focus on authentic craftsmanship and transparent, fair trade production means more creators around the world have the opportunity to share their talents and monetize them.

“There really seems to be a renaissance of craftsmanship sweeping through all design markets,” Hinz said. “It brings more diversity to the largest craft economy we’ve ever seen. Collaboration, democratized design and accessible resources have revived interest in artisan craftsmanship.”

The growing demand for handmade household goods also plays a role in the sustainability discussion. Hinz said the “Ikea era” of disposable furniture is over, and consumers see value in investing in higher-quality items.

“Consumers place a high value on durability in design,” she said. “The days of throwaway design seem to be over as consumers really look for furniture that’s built to last.”

And many of these consumers aren’t afraid to perform a little maintenance or pay for repairs rather than throw out an item and buy new.

“The addition of DIY care kits, buyback services, and repair services offers new ways to get the most out of every purchase,” Hinz said. “Investing in extending the lifecycle of household products keeps those items from ending up in landfill, which appeals to more sustainable consumers.”

Whether it’s through handcrafted, high-quality home furnishings, sustainably sourced materials, or designs that promote well-being and comfort for all, consumers want homeware manufacturers and retailers to offer the products they need to create that sense of sanctuary in their homes.

“Consumers are looking for a more human-centric approach to their daily lives,” Mize said. “From nature-centric aesthetics to circular economy solutions, really look at how your brand can help consumers more authentically engage their mindful intentions.” Circularity, neuro-aesthetics among the top trends of the “future of the home” – Sourcing Journal

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