Design Trends, Ideas + Inspiration

From Salone del Mobile: What’s Next in Furniture and Decor Design

Everytime we go to Salone del Mobile, it is such a whirlwind–so many new things to see and experience–that it takes us a little while to catch our breaths and really absorb everything. And that we have. With all the many unique furniture, decor and lighting designs we saw, we have since identified a few common design trends throughout the show.

Bright Yellow Accents

Throw pillow and lounge by Fermob (left); side chairs from Arper (right)

Sure, there were the occasional pops of millennial pink, but that blush hue truly paled in comparison to the plethora of eye-catching yellows scattered throughout the show. You couldn’t miss it. As such a bold color, a little yellow goes a long way. So, something as small as a throw pillow can add immediate cheer to a space. Or, if you happen to love yellow, larger pieces that we saw–side and armchairs, poufs, light fixtures–would add plenty of sunshine. Especially in combination with the following trend.

Earthy Foundations

Ethnicraft living room display

In recent years, cool greys have dominated as the neutral color palette of choice. But at this year’s Salone del Mobile, we saw a distinctive rise in the number of pieces with warmer earth tones–soft nudes, deep browns and smokey blacks (often accented with yellow, of course). Grey is still having its day, but now more often with a warmer tinge to it. Such colors give modern designs a soft and comforting back-to-nature feel that we have to admit we love. Dare we say it…beige is back.

Mixed Materials

Marble, wood and glass cabinet from Lago (left); table with marble and wood top and metal base by Cattelan Italia (right)

The idea of using two or more different materials to create furniture and accessory designs has always been interesting; it’s just so creative and unexpected. This year, the mixed material phenomenon is more intriguing than ever. Marble inlays in wood tabletops, glass tabletops on concrete bases, wood cabinets in contrasting metal frames. The possibilities are endless, and many of the brands at Salone del Mobile set out to prove that this year with their designs.

Soft and Glamorous Outdoors

Woven lounges and more from Cane-line (left); upholstered outdoor furniture from Vondom (right)

Outdoor fabrics and other materials are getting softer and more luxurious than ever before. It’s a trend well in keeping with the desire to bring the comfort and high quality of interior designs outside. Outdoor furniture brands that have never really done upholstered pieces before introduced some this year, and often with the help of some pretty big name designers, like Marcel Wanders.

Some of our favorite outdoor designs came from makers like Vondom and Gandia Blasco. With their clean-lined frames and plush upholstery, you could easily envision such designs inside your home. Meanwhile, pieces by Varaschin and Cane-line incorporate beautifully handwoven synthetics; the results are artful, lovely to touch and completely redefine what people mean when they say wicker or rattan. And fun new color options by Fermob only add to their already mouthwatering color palette, and are bound to inspire a cheerfully colorful outdoor (or, yes, even indoor) setting.

(A Little More) Private Workspaces

Sound absorbing panels from Arper

Open, collaborative workspaces aren’t going anywhere. But they are changing somewhat to address the problems that come from completely open spaces. Namely, excessive ambient noise. Tall sound-absorbing panels, sectioned-off “pods” and modular office systems from workspace innovators like Herman Miller and Arper have been designed to allow you to collaborate easily with your neighbor when you need to, but then have relative quiet and privacy when you don’t.

All-in-all, it was an exciting time for us in Milan this year. We can’t wait to bring these trends (and the products that showed them off best) to you throughout 2018. Stay tuned.

Nissa Hallquist

Nissa Hallquist

As the Content Marketing Manager for YDesign Group, Nissa has been writing about lighting, furniture and decor for many years. Considering that there's always something new out there, she'll likely write about them for many years more. She loves all things modern design, especially those designs that reinterpret classic forms in cool, imaginative ways. If she had her way, she'd spend all her money on such pieces (and wine).

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