The Future is Urban is the key message of the 2018 Heimtextil Theme Park.

Last month, I wrote about the Dulux Colour Trends 2018, which focused on striking the perfect balance - in your life and your home. Today, we are looking at international macro trends plus five themes that will dominate interior design in the next couple of years according to the Heimtextil Theme Park 2018.

Heimtextil is the largest international trade fair for residential and commercial textiles and is held every January in Frankfurt, Germany. The interior design industry, as well as the home decorator, can immerse themselves into the future of interior design at the Theme Park exhibition, which is the creative output of a group of seven international trend agencies, after analysing market research and merging it with the latest global design developments.

The international trend forecasters predict an urban future, which doesn't come as a surprise to me after watching the rise of apartment developments in Australia alone in recent years. Since I published my book Downsize with Style, I've been observing the media landscape and have subscribed to industry news, such as The Urban Living Network or The Urban Developer, which constantly portray the new look of Australian cities focussing on small space living in an urban setting.

Four macro trends

The Heimtextil Theme Park will depict four macro trends:

  • The Flexible Space
  • The Healthy Space
  • The Re-Made Space
  • The Maker Space


The exhibition will showcase how interiors will look (and feel) in the coming years. It will provide inspiration how we will live, work, communicate, shop, and share spaces. Plus, visitors will get an idea of upcoming lifestyle trends and discover pioneering projects and creative works.

The Flexible Space

... is all about lifestyle solutions for city dwellers, digital nomads, living in ever smaller spaces. This trend embodies space-saving concepts with genius solutions and adaptable design.

Image: Messe Frankfurt GmbH/Photography Rei Moon

The Healthy Space

... is all about wellbeing at home. We all know by now that our interior, the way we furnish our home, the colours we choose, impacts on our health, behaviour, and overall wellbeing. Indoor gardens are only one example of making a space healthier. This exhibition will demonstrate innovative design ideas that help make us feel better, more productive and satisfied where we live and work.

Image: Messe Frankfurt GmbH/Photography So-il for Mini Living

The Re-Made Space

... is all about recycling. More people in big cities cause more waste. According to the trend forecasters, for the first time in history, "the amount of waste produced in cities is growing faster than urbanisation itself." This display will explore how waste can become the starting point for new design.

Image: Messe Frankfurt GmbH

The Maker Space

Artisan and Maker Markets have been springing up like mushrooms in the past years. Hand-made imperfection expressed in unique pieces is a new trend in home decoration. This DIY movement is influencing the manufacturing of furniture, rugs, lamps, and decorating objects. The trend forecasters see downloadable designs as a big trend, as people can create a personalised item for their home.

Image: Messe Frankfurt GmbH

Five trend themes

On top of the four macro trends, the Trend Table identified five themes that look more closely at colours, materials, and designs for the next couple of years.

  • Relax/Recharge
  • Perfect Imperfection
  • Soft Minimal
  • Adapt + Assemble
  • Urban Oasis


... is all about colours and how to calm our busy minds when we arrive home from a day in an over-stimulated tech environment.

Image: Messe Frankfurt GmbH

Perfect Imperfection

... is all about Indigo. As seen in many colour forecasts and all over the interior design media landscape, Indigo, one of the oldest dyes in the world, is hotter than ever. Embracing imperfection, materials and products are authentic and reveal traces of how they were made.

Image: Messe Frankfurt GmbH/Brushstrokes rug by Elie Saab and The Rug Company

Soft Minimal

... is all about form follows function. Urban living requires functional and adaptable furniture that stands the test of time. Cosy textures create warmth and personality in a minimalistic interior. Muted pastels combined with natural hues and black accents are the go-to colour scheme for sophisticated style.

Image: Messe Frankfurt GmbH/Trace Rug by Norman Copenhagen

Adapt + Assemble

... is all about geometrical patterns and interchangeable shapes and materials perfect for packing and moving; supporting the peripatetic lifestyle of urban nomads. Simple techniques, industrial materials, and bright colours are characteristic of this trend.

Image: Messe Frankfurt GmbH/Open Rugs by Studio Plot

Urban Oasis

... is all about going green. Green means nature and wellbeing. To feel better at home surround yourself with the colour green. It is regarded as relaxing to the eye and will calm down the constant mind chatter. Experiment with different shades of green combined with matt pink to create your personal urban oasis.

Image: Messe Frankfurt GmbH

Interior Design Online Course

For a practical roadmap to downsizing success and creating a personal home in a smaller space, check out the Downsize with Style online course.


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