14 Design Trends for the year 2014

Produktdesigner Markus Wild über die Designtrends 2014

What 14 design trends?

Isn’t it enough to use the typical note from customers:
“As the iPhone – please”?

Although Apple products are still the icons of the world economy, this stylistic monoculture has caused certain disorientation. Everything that isn’t Apple Style seems to be random. In addition to a return to content and function, the actual basis for good design develops to a new awareness of stylistics in product design. So back in 2013 we had already begun to sort existing trends and collect them to form design trends to analyse.
The result was: 14 design trends that I first introduce in the context here. Particularly I believe that they are relevant and in the coming year one or the other trend will make its way into the spotlight. Of course, not all of them are brand new. Profound styles like minimal design have for many decades been the repertoire of the designer, but in the context of current social trends these come back again into focus.

Design trend 1 | Stealth Design, there is already an extensive article in german language, regarding this, but a picture speaks a 1000 words. Therefore, every design trend is linked with a lively and ever-growing Pinterest board where you can capture the essence directly into visual form. Here we go:

stealth design, the new Product design Trend

Design trend 1 | Stealth Design

Derived from the stealth technology and the early 3D computer graphics, this trend is now increasingly visible in product design. Designer/Interior designers such as Zaha Hadid and Konstantin Grcic use the expressive power of the triangle in order to minimize construction and enliven surfaces.
-> Examine Stealth Design
-> Go to full article (german)

wearable design, Elektronische Produkte zum Anziehen

Design trend 2 | Wearable Design

Ever since Google Glass the future begins right now. The extremely miniaturized technology approaches more and more towards the body. And the battle for a small place on the skins surface limited availability can be gained only with emotion and aesthetics.
-> Examine Wearable Design

Stapeldesign, Produktdesign aneinandergereiht

Design trend 3 | Stacking Design

An old topic – revived. The adjacent rows or stacked piles of similar elements dramatize the design and give the direction of the overall shape in several layers. A playful trend that works well with flat and minimal UI trends (No.7).
-> Examine Stacking Design

minimales Produktdesign / minimal design

Design trend 4 | Minimal Design

Minimalism goes on, every decade to date and is certainly one of the dominant trends in product design. It’s not just about to omit everything superfluous, but also about creating a possible abstract and independent form. Material quality and details are critical for this style.
-> Examine Minimal Design

ikonisches Produktdesign

Design trend 5 | Iconic Design

A design style that wants to communicate. It expresses more than a purely formal statement. Partly motivated by humour, partly by functional, the aim is always to play with the expectation of the observer. The intent of the designer wants to be discovered; the picture (icon) must be understood.
-> Examine Iconic Design

fliessendes produktdesign floating design

Design trend 6 | Floating Design

This flowing, organic style since Luigi Colani stood for “modern design”. In the stunning architecture of Zaha Hadid, this is thanks to 3D CAD programs now available and becomes hip in product design again. Although the highest standards of continuity, curvature and surface finish are required.
-> Examine Floating Design

flat and minimal user interfaces UI

Design trend 7 | Flat & Minimal UI

Everything is flat! The technique takes hardly any volume; conductors are brought into the case. Logically, then the user interface must not simulate more height. For years, it was with shadows and other 3D effects in the opposite direction – then came Apple’s IOS7 …

ecological product design

Design trend 8 | Eco Design

With honest sustainable production, the industry is still tough. Although Eco-design does not necessarily result in ecologically sound products, the more robust, natural design helps to achieve an understanding that eco does not necessarily mean poor design.
-> Examine Eco Design

produktdesign detail

Design trend 9 | Design Detail

A fresh design trend, with the focus on perfect details. The large surface area of the form (eg in automotive) is replaceable and can be seen as boring. Therefore much more effort is made on small details, such as Headlights or handle elements.
-> Examine Design Detail

cool deco produktdesign style

Design trend 10 | Deco Style

Decor was dead for years although now it is socially acceptable again. The cultural origins of the decor play an important role. Designers play with it and so bridge cultural and temporal boundaries. Of interest is the application of decorative designs on industrial products.
-> Examine Deco Style

cool office space and office design for remote workers

Design trend 11 | Cool Office Space

Not a pure product design trend, but one that affects products. As the world of work and private life mix more and more, whether through home office or the fact that the office is the “place to be”. Exciting shaping of the environment causes a change in the attitude of people.
-> Examine Cool Office Space

colorful design style

Design trend 12 | Color Design

Colour and colourful was taboo in the Apple-dominated era of glass & aluminum. Pantone has brought us back the joy of Colour. Since there is not only the coffee cup in x different Pantone colours, we know that a good colour range not only makes the product perfect, but is a good design feature.
-> Examine Color Design

b&w black&white product design

Design trend 13 | Black&White Design

As the opposite position to Colour Design it is also very trendy. The pure black / white trend within product design is a style that stands out with its strong contrasts of clarity and expressiveness. We set this style for years increasingly in the medical field but it has also established itself within furniture and sports.
-> Examine Black&White Design

3D printed product design

Design trend 14 | 3D Printed Design

Last but not least, perhaps the most revolutionary trend for the next few years. By using 3D printing, impossible forms can be created that were not realized before in any other method. Here it is easy to experiment due to easy production of a small number of pieces which is a totally new compared to before.
-> Examine 3D Printed Design

There they are, the 14 Design Trends for 2014. 14 sources of inspiration of our daily work, 14 styles that you should keep in mind. Only by sorting, can you then understand the similarities and the differences clearly and through comparison, this allows for new ideas. What I find interesting in this context is that you find different trends such as stealth design and floating design in the work of the same person, Zaha Hadid as an example. This is certainly an indication that we should experiment more in the coming year.

Now that you’ve taken the 14 design trends and the associated Pinterest boards intensively under the microscope, we would like to know if and how you will use the suggestions. Please write a short comment with your feedback.

In addition, if you are looking for more tips and similar articles, we have a few things that you should be aware of:

-> Visit our Pinterest boards, where we post new design trends daily.

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Markus writes about design- and innovation management, creativity methods, medical design and intercultural branding. More about...

Originally written by Markus Wild, 21. January 2014. Last updated 15. May 2023


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