After chatting with Ross Bonetti, founder of Vancouver’s Livingspace, about what’s hot and trendy summer, I’ve determined one rule: there are no rules. Just as the days and months are blending together in the our seemingly lawless Möbius strip of time, so is design—albeit, in a much less scary way. Community spaces like restaurants and gyms are being folded into our homes, and indoor essentials are moving outdoors for COVID-friendly entertaining. Here are four trends brought to you by a relentless 2020 and designers determined to make it work.
1. Camouflaged Home Gyms
For some, gym closures are an excuse to take it easy. For others, they’re an excuse to create—or upgrade—their home gym. Bonetti says that since the pandemic, sales of Technogyms have quadrupled. This sleek, high-tech equipment blends into living spaces, so your gym doesn’t have to be a separate room in your house. In his own open-concept home, Bonetti has a 5-foot elevation between his living space and workout space, making it airy but still but distinct from the rest of the home. 2020 gyms are highlights, not eyesores—and there’s no commute.
2. Sneaky, Functional Kitchens
Although some restaurants are reopening for dine-in service, going out to eat is a risk that many of us still aren’t comfortable taking. So when it comes to the kitchen, functionality is key. “Our clients are looking for restaurant-quality kitchens in their home,” says Bonetti. Livingspace’s Arclinea shop-in-shop exhibits an example of a “working” (or “hidden”) kitchen, a smaller room similar to a wok kitchen that is separate from the usual cooking space. It hosts high-end appliances and keeps messes hidden, a useful trick when you’re spending all day at home.
3. Indoor Furniture in Disguise
“The blend between indoor and outdoor furniture is getting closer,” says Bonetti. With nearly all entertaining moved outdoors, plastic furniture just won’t cut it. Brands like Roda and Paola Lenti have been crafting high-quality, stylish outdoor furniture for years—Paola Lenti’s new line, including the Ami armchair, has upholstery made from the same kind of rope that rock climbers use (so, yes, it can withstand your next distance-friendly dinner party).
4. Patios with Night Vision
Speaking of dinner party: ending the evening because your only light source is taking a spin by Australia is kind of a bummer. Bonetti notes that outdoor lighting is something clients often forget about, but it’s an essential component to making your patio space practical. Floor lamps like the Captain Flint by Flos or high-tech lights like Roda’s pillow lantern keep the party going.