Design in 2016 – what will furniture design look like?

As part of our series on the future of design in 2016, the Aram Gallery’s curator Riya Patel looks at what will happen in furniture design over the next 12 months.

Courtesy of Amandine Alessandra
Courtesy of Amandine Alessandra

What will 2016 hold for furniture design?

“I think how we buy and value furniture will change. With new brands like Hem and Tylko using an online model to offer mass customisation at lower costs, we’re seeing contemporary design reach a younger, more mobile audience.

With more people renting, sharing and living more nomadically, these brands have caught on to a need for quality furniture that’s compact, easily shipped, and can be updated rather than replaced as tastes change.

For so long our choices for modern furniture have been limited to IKEA or high-end design brands. This year I think we will see more companies attempting to bridge that gap.”

What was your favourite furniture design project in 2015?

“Structural Skin by Jorge Penadés, a piece I chose for The Aram Gallery’s Extra Ordinary show this summer.

From his research on the wastefulness of the leather industry, Penadés made these side tables using glued and compressed scraps of coloured hide. The combination with polished brass makes us think about what materials we consider luxurious and why.”

Courtesy of Brenda Germade
Courtesy of Brenda Germade
Courtesy of Brenda Germade
Courtesy of Brenda Germade

Discover more of 2015’s biggest furniture projects:

Ben Kelly Design creates new study interiors for Manchester Museum

Iconic 1960s Coventry Chair redesigned – “we recognise that people have got heavier”

Hella Jongerius: “There’s too much shit design”

What are the current key trends in furniture design?

Jasper Morrison on the joys and challenges of designing everyday objects

See all Design Week’s furniture design stories at

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