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Back to the future

Interior designers are attempting to fashion the future while offering a sprinkling of sensational scenes from the past. Diana Kiernander plots your territory

The retro beat of 50s Hollywood is playing in your head. You sit back on your patchwork leather sofa, sip Rennaisance Laudenam elixir and relax in the silhouette created by metallic light clusters and stained glass lanterns . . .

Interiors inspiration for 2008 spans decades. If you plan to follow this year’s household trends, four distinct design themes emerging to encourage even the laziest flat dweller to transform their pad into an opulent palace.

Home owners with a decadent streak should consider a four-poster bed for late nights and languid mornings. Habitat stocks wooden frames and advises dressing the bed in deep purples or hazy chocolate tones. Opt for silk or lace for added elegance.

British lovers of the exotic are looking East for inspiration. Lamps feature Geisha girls sipping tea while Asian influences abound with upholstery: expect woven rattan chairs inspired by the Thai coast. The most striking trend of the season is animal print rugs and throws. Habitat and Galletly & Tubbs in particular cater for sumptuous taste in affordable style.

The modern-day Dorian Gray will love shiny, glitterball lighting and cool, metallic wallpaper finishes. A sprinkling of gold and silver creates a sense of luxury and sophistication within most living spaces. This year there’s a slick edge to futuristic living. Topshop’s Laura Lees branches out into furniture design and Matthew Williamson creates dazzling metallic motifs on his wallpaper range, available at Habitat. As 2008 hots up, experimentation with high-tech digital printing processes hits our homes. Think large-scale murals and canvases on modern walls. Technological advances mean sophisticated personalised patterns can be placed on ceramics, tiles and other surfaces.

50s Americana
Another star attraction this season is The King. Elvis iconography is fuelled by home fashion’s ongoing fascination with retro looks. Put the swing in your living space with formica and vintage leather. Red and black themed stools and oval shaped tables are everywhere. The cool allure of 50s America is a decorative treat. Edinburgh metalworker, Bryony Knox makes standout pieces of Elvis and other old-school Hollywood stars with prices starting at £110. In Glasgow, sculptural artist Steff Norwood, has created record players from old radiogram sideboards and is working on incorporating ipods into reclaimed wood.

Eco-minded designers are currently bringing everything back down to earth. Tables, chairs and accessories can be made from recycled plastic at Blue Marmalade in Edinburgh. There’s talk of eco wallpaper taking over as standard in the future. There will be an increase in the use of recycled materials and fairtrade, organic cotton for the best dressed beds.

Delicate handmade flowers constructed from orange skin paper and handcrafted rugs embellished with elaborate borders and tassels are taking off in a big way. Colour is bold and breathtaking, like the fluorescent finish of Made in Norwood’s recycled sculptural furniture classics.
So, even eco friendly dandies can enjoy the opulence of 2008’s interior design indulgence.


Bo Concept, 25 Sauchiehall Street, 0141 341 4920

Dallas & Dallas, 18 Montrose Street, 0141 552 2939

Gallety & Tubbs, 439 Great Western Road, 0141 357 1001

Habitat, 160 Bothwell Street, 0141 248 2517

G1 Interiors, 27 Trongate, 0141 552 1177

Made In Norwood, All Enquiries to Steff Norwood, 07944 986818

Porcelanosa, 50-54 Glassford Street, 0141 552 8110

The Fantasy Factory (for murals),, 0141 534 3428

The Store, 26 Munro Place, 0141 950 1333

Timorous Beasties, 384 Great Western Road, 0141 337 2622

Colonial, 35 Dundas Street, 0131 557 5731

Concrete Wardrobe, 50A Broughton Street, 0131 558 7130

Design Shop, 116-120 Causewayside, 0131 667 7078

Feather & Black, 47-49 Morningside Road, 0131 446 3579

Habitat, 32 Shandwick Place, 0131 225 9151

In House design, 322 Portobello High Street, 0131 669 4454

Miam Miam, 125 Bruntsfield Place, 0131 221 0037

Moleta Munro, 4 Jeffrey Street, 0131 557 4800

Studio One Furniture, 132 Morningside Road, 0131 447 2179

The Tree House, 19B Howe Street, 0131 557 1222

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