Charu Gandhi established multi award winning interior design studio Elicyon in 2014. Here she predicts eight design trends that we can expect to see in 2022 and shares images from her latest projects
Bespoke gaming furniture – Requests for gaming tables and spaces to accommodate board games are increasingly popular. We’re often asked to design spaces for chess, backgammon and cards in the home with tailored reclined casual seating to relax in whilst playing. It’s become about falling in love with your home, choosing to be in rather than out.
Crafting a gaming table is a real art as they’re highly bespoke, with different colours or patterns to suit every different type of game. One client required a side table in the main living space whereby if you flipped the top it turned into a chess board (pictured above)
Indulgent guilty pleasure space or room – As work from home becomes a more permanent fixture in many of our lives, the need for a sense of escape to retreat to after work is prevalent. A space that allows you to feel as though you are departing from the day – be it a room where your imagination runs wild with vibrant colours or bold art, or an immersive screening room where you can lose yourself playing PlayStation or Xbox, for example, with surround sound.
Over the last few years, there has been an obvious shift to colour in our home design and creating fun moments that excite. For one client, we created an aerial yoga room which was entirely mirrored from floor to ceiling – it was an indulgence that they had always dreamed of having in their own home. For another client, a Moroccan style spa in electric blue was created as the ultimate space to unwind after work, for a cleanse and refresh. The surprise factor helps to create a moment for guests. These guilty pleasure spaces are the ultimate luxury and one of the interior design trends for 2022.
(You can find out how to create the perfect home gym here)
Painted or tented ceilings – The fifth wall in a room is often neglected and painted white as standard, however, we see it as an opportunity to be playful, add colour and character to a space. It may be that extra coving detail is added to draw the eyes up, or that the ceiling is painted an entirely different colour all together.
For one client, we’ve draped a large cream canvas over a bathroom ceiling to create a biophilic sanctuary, almost a safari tent, to evoke exotic feelings of travel. In another project’s powder room, we’re using Cole & Sons wallpaper featuring clouds to cover the ceiling. The wall space was mostly taken up by furniture, and so we wanted to add interest to the large spare otherwise-unused space on the ceiling; it was then framed with a dark green trim.
Unusual, unexpected and playful colour combinations – In the absence of travel in the past two years, we’ve seen an obvious openness to colour from our clients – daring, unusual and unexpected colour combinations such as salmon and cherry, mustard and mint or lilac and orange are exciting and joyful.
Rather than sticking to two toned material palettes, we’re adding three colours or four to ensure interiors come alive. What may feel like a clash on paper, and would not instinctively go together, sometimes ends up with the most personality. Making unexpected combinations work creates a really special and surprising scheme. We predict playful colour combinations will be one of the interior design trends for 2022.
Earthy colours, materiality and textures – Red timber is a product we are working with more in our schemes, typically with a cherry or exotic veneer. Though in recent years we’ve used a cooling light blond timber reminiscent of the pared-back whitewashed style now synonymous with en-vogue summer destinations including Ibiza and Mykonos.
This earthy materiality feels grounding and helps us to feel connected to nature in our homes. Burnt and charred wood has a lovely texture – it’s a material that’s almost been destroyed and yet through the process of destruction so much character is added. It’s about celebrating imperfections. Highlighting the raw materiality in the right environment gives a space depth.
Top predicted standout colours for 2022 – Honeycomb, lilac, zesty curry lime, olive yellow, dark navy, cherry and maple. For one client, an acid yellow high gloss lacquer leaps from the interior of the bespoke dining room drinks bar whenever the doors are opened – it’s the most exciting of surprises
Exposed utilitarian details – Inspired by the British Italian architect Richard Rodgers, known mostly for his work on the Centre Pompidou in Paris and the Lloyds of London building and Millenium Dome in London, we’re drawn to making a feature of utilitarian details, as is often done in architecture. As an interior design trends for 2022, rather than hiding the nuts and bolts of a piece of furniture, we’re in favour of highlighting these elements as a design quirk. Exposing steel framework often has an appealing honest aesthetic.
Unusual pendants and chandeliers – After years of loving subtle bronze, alabaster and blown glass lighting we are now drawn to bright colours and interestingly shaped chandeliers. In a recent project we suspended a floating blanket shaped chandelier made of cast glass, which frames the main living space. Acid colour pops added to schemes create playful interest, and we’re predicting a flurry of these in interior schemes throughout 2022.
Elicycon is based in Kensington, London
Photography Patrick Williamson