Enduring Design Crosses Markets and Stands the Test of Time

09/09/2019 By Robert Nieminen

Fashion and interior design share many commonalities, but perhaps the most interesting is the fact that they both can be trendy, timeless and cyclical. Some fashion trends pass quickly, but others—like a black cocktail dress or a well-tailored suit—never go out of style.

Likewise, though the interiors world has seen its share of fads come and go, a well-designed space or product can stand the test of time. Perhaps no one is as familiar with the intersection of fashion and interiors as designer Jhane Barnes.

During her illustrious career which began “reluctantly” in fashion, Barnes has applied her creativity and love of mathematics to product design—ultimately creating enduring pieces that inspire.

“I’ve always believed in designing clothes for men that were not trendy, but at the same time quite unique,” she says.

Barnes believes that creating products such as flooring should also last a long time, "since it’s invasive to install and best for the environment the longer it’s being used and appreciated. I want the customer to not tire of my designs and feel good looking at them for many years.”

Barnes employs an innovative design process using a proprietary mathematic algorithm to generate unique patterns. She has manipulated them to create carpet and flooring for Tarkett, textiles for Knoll, furniture for Bernhardt and eyewear for Kenmark.

Mobility and Localization Are Top Design Trends

Crossing over between markets isn’t new or exclusive, of course, but it’s a trend that’s happening increasingly in the industry—and technology is at its center.

As professionals progressively spend time working wherever it best suits them (because of mobile technology), the design of the workplace is starting to look and feel a lot more like home or a favorite destination hotel.

“Guests wanted to experience a sense of place and a sense of comfort. The next logical step, as technology has allowed our workforce to become more mobile and move away from the traditional work environment, was the crossover from residential/hospitality to commercial,” explains Giana DiLeonardo, partner at hospitality design firm DiLeonardo International.

As such, terms like “resimercial” and “respitality” have emerged to define this crossover trend and ultimately point to the fact that people are looking for authentic experiences that reflect their identity and values.

Similarly, hotel design continues to embrace the idea of localization, providing travelers with genuine experiences that are rooted in their locale.

“People like the local experience, and travel because of the experience,” Miriam Torres, co-founder of Parker-Torres Design, tells us. “Brands want to bring the local feel and aesthetic into the industry so people can travel and know where they are, even if they are in the hotel all day long.”

Giving People Unique Spaces

In this issue, we also explore emerging trends such as how retailers are using design to blur the lines between store and showroom, showroom and art exhibit; why children need engaging library spaces, and how libraries are this century’s town squares; and how Maslow’s hierarchy provides an understanding of how to help building occupants meet their psychological needs while evaluating the impact of built space upon the human psyche.   

What these and other stories in this issue tell us is that design is imbued with immense power to cross boundaries both seen and unseen. Whether it’s overlapping market segments, embracing cultures or transcending time constraints, design permeates every facet of our daily experiences and the spaces in which we have them.

It’s been our mission for the past 35 years to explore these intersections and how they shape our lives—and we encourage you to delve deeper into this issue and discover how it can impact yours.

Read next: Hotel Design Tactics Continue to Pop Up in Corporate Settings

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