Key Themes for the Year Ahead From the Maison & Objet Fair 2023
After a period of austerity and uncertainty, the aisles of the prestigious trade fair are finally flooded with joy
The event had the theme of Enjoy and welcomed 750 new exhibitors in addition to the regular 2,000. Alongside the general public, who flocked in droves to soak it all up, the Houzz team went along to give you a sneak peek into the show’s defining moments and new trends.
In search of pleasure
According to the experts at trend agency Peclers Paris, who defined the watchword of the show – Enjoy – 2024 is set to be the year of renewed elation following years of post-pandemic austerity, during which many brands collapsed.
According to the trend forecasters, this quest for joy and and pleasure will be reflected in our 2024 interiors, with the emergence of three distinct decorative themes:
- ‘Seductive Expressiveness’, where our spaces reflect a return to celebration with extravagant, luxurious decor built around vinyl, glossy, reflective surfaces, sequins, and exaggerated, disproportionate volumes.
- ‘Liberating Creativity’, encouraging an optimistic, fun-filled vision of the world: a colourful universe filled with ‘poptimist’ patterns.
- ‘Augmented Sensibilities’, where digital media plays a key role in the creation of cosy, futuristic spaces: a soft, organic aesthetic, where you feel as though you’re enveloped in an emotional cocoon, tinted with calm hues and opalescent sheens.
A new colour palette
According to Xavier Pouget, head of communication at Peclers, 2024 will be marked by “a subtle balance between tonal and pastel hues, where milky colours will interact with earthy shades“.
The three different themes outlined by Peclers will notably be built around three distinct colour palettes, showcased by the trend agency in its space Inspire Me!: Seductive Expressiveness makes use of terracotta, gold and pink hues; Liberating Creativity is driven by hot pink, apple green and vivid orange, and Augmented Sensibilities is soft and soothing, prioritising nude pink and gold.
According to renowned colourist Lidewij Edelkoort, sky blue is also set to play a leading role in the new colour schemes. She pointed to the trend towards incorporating water into palettes as well, creating striking watercolour effects.
Elsewhere at the show, we could see hints of a return of orange, an emblematic colour from the 1970s, while purple is making its presence felt as an echo of the growing power of digitalisation and augmented reality. Finally, khaki was presented as the ideal contrasting tone, blending harmoniously with purple and blue.
The return of pattern
The event also saw plenty of patterns, which brightened up the space with their multitude of colours and were perfect ambassadors for the Enjoy theme. Numerous stands played the pattern card to capture the attention of visitors, while trendsetter Elizabeth Leriche devoted her entire What’s new? inspiration area to the subject.
“Since Covid, we’ve been living in such difficult circumstances that I now feel a really strong appetite for pattern. Patterns, which can be immersive, even hypnotic, offer a playful escape,” she says.
In her space, which she named Pattern Factory, Elizabeth explored different pattern trends, from graphic architectural inspiration to 1970s pop floral patterns, as well as eclectic themes and lush botanical designs.
When it comes to using pattern at home, Elizabeth suggests using an experimental approach, arguing that the layout of the pattern should celebrate life and optimism in a joyful mix-and-match aesthetic.
Colourful furniture in the spotlight
Against this backdrop of a search for pleasure and fun, when it came to furniture and accessories, we expected nothing less than joyful.
Belgian duo Fien Muller and Hannes Van Severen were nominated Designer(s) of The Year 2023 by Maison & Objet.
Since 2013, their style has been defined by a fusion of fine, graphic and decorative arts. Their unique aesthetic, influenced by Bauhaus and functionalism, is characterised by ‘furniture sculptures’ that play with materials and colour.
For the Maison & Objet September 2023 edition, the pair presented a range of dynamic works, such as shelves incorporating floor lamps, and collaborations with Bitossi, Valerie Objects and Danish brand HAY.
Rising Talent Awards
These awards highlight the talent of seven young designers selected by a jury chaired by Philippe Starck. The artists, who represent the new wave of French design, presented their work, which showed a preference for organic shapes, natural materials and bright colours.
We particularly liked the work of Arthur Fosse and Samuel Perhirin (Passage), who presented their first collection, Mise à l’eau, combining design and fashion.
The Designer’s Studio
This section was dedicated to designers who have chosen to self-manufacture, which gives them the freedom to create without constraint and to control their production processes.
Represented were Sebastian Cox, who focuses on producing sustainable furniture, the Masquespacio studio known for its joyful and innovative style, Faye Toogood, who mixes art and design, and Dirk van der Kooij, who transforms recycled plastic into luxurious furniture.
An eye on sustainability
Given the urgent need to tackle climate change, the quest for sustainability is becoming essential for our interiors, and the September 2023 Maison & Objet show did not fail to echo the growing importance of eco-friendly materials in the interior design sector.
The Future on Stage selection showcased innovative new materials derived from the recycling of bio-based materials, such as Ostrea’s marine terrazzo made from mussel, oyster and scallop shells. We also spotted lamps and cups from Repulp Design, which transforms citrus fruit peel into an alternative material to plastic.
Finally, in the centre of the show, the Craft area, dedicated to art and craft, invited us to rethink the way we consume. The 164 exhibitors, all craftsmen and women, encouraged us to choose quality over quantity, to invest in pieces that have meaning and that, through their durability, are in tune with the ecological and social issues of our time. An ideal fusion of pleasure and ethics.
What do you think of these themes from the latest edition of Maison & Objet? Share your thoughts in the Comments.