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Cutouts, Holograms & Emerald

Hello everyone! As 2012 draws to a close (how did that happen so fast?!), we turn our attention to a brand spanking new year and what overarching design and retail trends may emerge in 2013. From major shifts in aesthetic to short-lived fads, the next year will be anything but boring. I mean, how could it be when holograms are on the table?

As I mentioned in my post last week, a trend or fad is never certain. However, there are many that feel like certainties due to their ubiquity and slow climb to the forefront or mainstream. I plan on continuing to post two or three of these possible trends at a time, discussing where they have popped up and how they could be used in your retail space, collections or even personal decor and style. It will be interesting to look back a few months from now and see which trends really took off and which were subject to niche popularity. Three design elements I have noticed moving slowly but confidently forward lately are cutouts, holograms and the colour emerald. I happen to love all three so can only hope they step forward as big 2013 design players (and fill shop shelves and Pinterest boards as a result!) As always, I would to know your thoughts. Let’s ponder the trio below.

Wishing you all a wonderful holiday season! Thank you for reading my rather verbose posts this year and as always, thanks you Rena for including me on your fabulous site. Until 2013, I am off to find tinsel something… — Chloé / plenty of colour

Cutouts were all over Spring 2013 runways and seemed to fall into two categories: geometric slashes and intricate perforations. The latter were often laser-cut, more artful and almost lace-like (rather than the uniform dots and patterns popular in design the last couple of years). I love the shapes and layering created in these two styles and can see both easily translated across many product categories.

For example, cutouts can be interpreted in product packaging, branding or even styling (what chic chocolate presentation!) I love how cutouts in any form can be applied to so many materials from ornate laser-cut tables to simple geometric paper wraps.

Cutouts are one of my favourite facets of architecture and design. Vinyl film on windows, colourful geometric shop exteriors, exquisitely perforated screens – there are no shortage of ways this notion of exposure can be applied. While specific cutout styles may jump forward in popularity, they are largely a classic design element with little concern of entering fad territory. I am excited to see how the two styles, bold slashes and delicate detail, evolve in 2013.

Over the last year and a bit, I have noticed a slow moving trend of holograms and iridescent finishes. Not the cheap and chaotic hologram style of the 1980’s but rather, a modernized approach where one holographic element appears with neutrals and streamlined shapes. Simplicity is key to this hologram renaissance.

I am excited to see if holograms remain a true niche or if they move into a more mainstream position. While iridescent finishes might not fit into every collection or personal aesthetic, I would still love to see retail spaces and styling explore the look. An art installation using plexiglass, a feature wall of hologram wallpaper, a cellophane backdrop for product photography — holograms are ripe for playful interpretation. Oh and yes, that is an entire hologram building. Incredible, isn’t it?

Last week, Pantone announced Emerald as its Colour of 2013. I think the decision is a great one as luxurious greens and blues have been growing in popularity lately. While emerald often conjures up old-fashioned or stuffy images, the specific shade (17-5641) is more cool-toned and clear than its yellow-based, antique predecessor. This modern shade may have many people rethinking emerald in fashion, home decor and retail.

Emerald has the luxury connotations of a jewel tone yet remains approachable with its nature-based inspiration. Now that’s a colour dream team! It is a fabulous hue for both packaging and retail design. I particularly love when emerald is used as a jolt of colour in mostly white designs, neutral groupings or with other pops of bright hue.

image via j.crew

From soft periwinkle to hot pink, emerald is becoming a new sort of neutral (a shift similar to navy blue).

images via doorr and paul smith

Emerald (or any green for that matter) seems slightly ignored in retail design and storefronts. While there is some negative colour psychology surrounding green, I think it all depends on the shade. Emerald is a bold, luxurious and creative colour that attracts attention and can be mixed with many other hues. Give it a whirl in the new year!

Thanks again for reading and see you all in 2013! — Chloé / plenty of colour

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  1. Joyeaux says:

    Thank to so much for this inspiration! I can’t wait to begin incorporating these ideas into my cards :)

  2. Sue says:

    Thank you Chloe’ for another amazing presentation. I’ve so enjoyed all of the postings you’ve done with so many exceptional ideas! Have a wonderful holiday season and I look forward to seeing what you’ll be writing about in 2013!
    All the best.

  3. […] to see which become big design players in 2013 and which are subject to niche popularity. In my latest post for Rena Tom, I discuss this intriguing trio and how it may apply to retail, design and even […]

  4. jon says:

    thank you, just spent a colorful hour at your site.

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