Milan Design Week, also known as Salone del Mobile Milano, is undoubtedly one of the busiest weeks in the design calendar. Every year, the event welcomes hundreds of designers from around the world exhibiting across the city — and even more design enthusiasts attending the events.
This year’s edition takes place across the Italian city from 8 to 14 April. Naturally, each edition brings a forecast of the interior and design movements that the world is gravitating towards for the following year. If you’re someone looking to keep up with the latest trends, this is definitely an event you would want to keep your eyes peeled on.
Trends that have emerged at this year’s Milan Design Week includes the increasing crossover between science and design, as well as the rise of off-grid living.
Here, a closer look at the interior and design trends that will reign for the rest of 2019 and 2020.
Multi-functional furniture is still reigning this year, especially for the modern home. Ikea and Sonos for example, unveiled beautiful speakers that can double up as lamps and shelves. Called the Symfonisk line, the range features two pieces — a table lamp and a book-shelf — both of which double up as speakers complete with Sonos’ signature audio technologies. Once available, the book-shelf speaker will be priced at £99 GBP (S$175) and the table lamp speaker will be available at US$179 (S$242).
This year’s Milan Design Week sees various designers collaborating with restaurants, or opening ones themselves. Tom Dixon’s first showroom and restaurant in mainland Europe, The Manzoni, will be the backdrop for the launch of three product ranges. This follows the success of Dixon’s Coal Office in London, which combines a bar, restaurant and retail space, offering an engaging shopping experience for the brand’s customers in Europe.
Dixon isn’t the only one. This year, Dutch designer Maarten Baas has teamed up with furniture brand Lensvelt to transform their favourite restaurant into a bar. Bar Baas will be a take on the popular Milan drinking hole, Bar Basso — and will be furnished with the pair’s latest collaboration, the Maarten Baas 101 chairs and stools.
The lines between science and design are becoming increasingly blurred. This Milan Design Week, Google has partnered with scientists for an exhibition that shows how different aesthetic experiences can impact our health and wellbeing. Called A Space for Being, the exhibition was developed with scientists from John Hopkins University, and features three rooms with subtly contrasting interiors — and varying lighting, sounds, scents and textures. The aim of the exhibition is to show the direct impact of design on one’s mental wellbeing.
Similarly, Bvlgari’s exhibition this year takes over a 1000-square-metre space in the Indro Montanelli Public Gardens, displaying two installations that explore the connection between design, science and art. The first installation (in the Ulrico Hoepli Municipal Planetarium) features the work of visionary Argentine artist Tomás Saraceno. The second, located in the gardens surrounding the Planetarium, immerses visitors in the evolution of B.zero1, the iconic Bvlgari design that celebrates its twentieth anniversary this year.
This year’s Milan Design Week sees more homeware from fashion houses such as Gucci and Hermes. Italian fashion house Gucci exhibits its latest additions to the brand’s house ware collection at a temporary two-story boutique in Milan. Imagined by creative director Alessandro Michele, the entire space is decorated in the brand’s signature maximalist patterns and prints, which includes candles and chairs, plates, wallpaper and cushions. The pieces have been curated into real-life scenarios that include multiple lounge areas, a salon, and a dining room.
As the modular micro-home is still gaining traction, so has off-grid living. The concept is becoming increasingly more popular as people are becoming more aware of the need to reduce their impact on the environment. An example is the prototype of Casa Ojalá, a mobile home designed by Italian architect Beatrice Bonzanigo. The patented design is a micro home that is transportable, adaptable and off-grid; and can be assembled in up to 20 different layouts.