One Step Beyond

One Step Beyond


As a new decade begins to unfold, we spoke to some of the world’s top designers to find out what will be hot-to-trot in 2020

Andrew MacKenzie

The keystone of the new trends is innovation; it's big and it's glamorous.

While I stay grounded in interpreting interiors around the people who inhabit the living spaces, I love this new challenge.

International spring and summer fashion collections have been strongly influenced by themes borrowed from tropical jungles, which echo the work of post-impressionist artist Paul Gauguin, famous for his depictions of life in tropical regions. Gauguin advocated working through feeling rather than direct observation, a mantra that I think will be reflected in interior design over the next year.

I predict the tropical trend which has been simmering for a while will explode in a riot of leaf-flushed colour. Over-scaled tropical island jungle prints are everywhere, on cushions, rugs and wallpaper and are far bigger and bolder than ever before.

Fine craftsmanship, with handmade and polished pieces is integral to successfully pulling off the contemporary tone. With details inspired by the natural world reflecting the jungle idiom, such as birds perching on gold lamp bases, striding gold legs and talons, leaves and other motifs from nature.

Thus, gold will strike a strong note lifting the softer boho look to a more resonant glamour with undertones of a Vegas casino. Jungle animals and palms in gold will feature as plant bases and stands and transform interiors into gleaming spaces. The classic crystal chandelier takes flight with exotic feathered plumage.

Perhaps this trend, focusing as it does on the plants and animals, arises from a growing awareness of the destruction to which global forests are currently subjected.

Environmental problems require serious consideration and it is encouraging to see the growing use of sustainably sourced and recyclable materials. Rather than a trend this is really a no-brainer for all of us who inhabit the planet.

Life itself is the ultimate experience and designing spaces that will add meaning and beauty to the lives of others is at the core of my work. Andrew makes no secret of his dislike for the generic and formulaic and has a well-deserved reputation for original and individual work soon to be seen in his upcoming creation in the hotel leisure market.

Jane Adams 

We’re seeing paint and fabric houses moving towards colours from nature such as soft greens with punchy accents of ochres, mustards and raspberries. Our clients are requesting neutral palettes that we are focusing on with accents of bold, dark aubergines and charcoals.

Patterns are also leaning towards natural routes too – we’re noticing a lot of gorgeous coral reef patterns and shapes in fabric, ceramics and lighting. Other natural materials and patterns will be current for 2020 such as natural linens and the use of sustainable timber in tessellated patterns for walls and floors.

For projects, we are still using dark bronze with our backs firmly turned away from chromes and nickels. This dark bronze continues as a detail inlay on both floors and wall cladding. There’s is an increasing accessibility of surface design within domestic settings and we think this will continue to grow, for example, wall panelling; whether it’s painted MDF or intricate timber with metal detailing. We hope people will embrace the design details they see in public spaces and hotels into their homes.

We’re also having the wonderful opportunity to work with craftspeople using pieces as art installations as well as functional sculpture such as light fittings. Sustainability is finally the accepted standard and we’re hoping the industry will soon grasp the importance of heirloom pieces that outlast the frivolities of fast fashion.

Marcel Wanders

In 2020, we’ll continue to observe the tendency of depersonalised interior spaces. With houses shifting ownership more regularly and owners increasingly having guests over, including Airbnb guests, the interiors of homes are becoming less personal and more toned down. While previously our homes were the spaces where we would express personality and individuality, now, character is shifting to collective urban spaces. My theory is that as people spend less and less time at home and homes are used diversely and by more people so, home interiors are being designed with less character while collective spaces in the city are being designed with more personality and branding. Shorter use and more transient residences are creating this shift in personal space. At the same time, collective outdoor areas in our cities are becoming richer environments that people find more appealing and distinctive in nature.

Rachel Winham

2020 seems like a futuristic year yet it’s right around the corner. Things are definitely starting to warm up for interior palettes, fabrics, and materials.

The day of grey is not fully behind us, but new neutral tones are taking charge with beige, oatmeal, and buttercream. Yellow toned neutrals are the perfect base to build upon and make an excellent backdrop for soft accent colours, like Tranquil Dawn.

Fabrics are also making a warm and cosy statement with a strong focus on bouclé. This is a looped yarn fabric which create a raided curled quality that gives a warm texture and depth to a space.

Paired back and thoughtful choices will be reflected in materials used for the upcoming year. There is a growing element of sustainability and becoming more aware of what we are putting into our homes. It is about creating a calm, unique, and comfy space to rest and regenerate from the outside world, a space that is safe yet inviting.

Allegra Hicks

Looking into 2020, I think the way forward for design is to take a combined creative and ecological approach. The planet is under threat and this impacts on everything, including design. Therefore we need to think more seriously about using what we already have, and reuse, rejig and upcycle.

My design DNA mantra is that mixing is fundamental. This trend has been well trodden in fashion but less so in interiors - I think over the next year we will see more of this flowing through into interior design. I love eclectic design; blending colour, pattern, textures, furniture and fabrics from different periods to combine unique vintage and contemporary pieces. For example, an 18th century armchair juxtaposed with a contemporary piece can look spectacular and provides a very beautiful backdrop to a room.

I love wallpaper and fabric adorned walls and it seems as though fabric wallpaper is set to be used in a big way in 2020, so that’s a very exciting new trend for me.

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