Is Excess Ever Good?

Did you have a chance to see The Great Gatsby over the weekend?  The movie and the book are all about excess, both tangible (the fabulous cars, houses, clothes and jewellery) and intangible (Gatsby’s obsessional love of Daisy).

The focus on excess reminded me of the trend alert from Mix (a company that devotes itself to global colour and trend forecasting).  They suggest that pattern overload will make its way into interior products in 2014.  The fashionistas at London Fashion Week in February have already reported on pattern overload on the runway and off.  Check out style guru and creative director for J.Crew, Jenna Lyons, recently voted Number 44 in the Time Magazine top 100 most influential people in the world.
photo: Vanessa Jackman

photo: Vanessa Jackman

Yowsa!  I wish I had the sartorial confidence to pull off this look.

Oh, did I mention that I won Mix’s trendspotter competition at Pulse a couple of weeks ago?  Pulse is an industry event showcasing new products in the interiors and gift world.  OK, it’s not a Time Magazine global award but I’ll take any prize I can get.

So here are some of my finds on the pattern overload trend at Pulse:

Hand-painted glass pieces and artwork for the home from Caroline Hely Hutchinson for CHH Design.  Caroline is British but lives partly in Provence and  is inspired by the vibrant colours of Southern France.
Only someone who sees sunshine on a regular basis could produce such unapologetically joyful design!

Wallace-Sewell is a textile design studio based in London which finds its inspiration from many sources, including the Bauhaus and Colourist painters.  Their fabrics are vibrant with the confident use of colour and pattern.

Another home-grown talent, Joy Bates of Seven Gauge Studios uses knitwear to create complex patterns in colour.

Deryn Ralph is a knit-wear designer from Hampshire whose products are unashamedly exuberant in colour, pattern and texture.  She finds inspiration in nature and in retro design.


And now for something completely different, lest you think this trend is a British design phenomenon…

Tokidoki is an Italian lifestyle brand that is influenced by Japanese pop culture financed by Americans.  They tend to sell mostly clothes but I had to include this fabric and the chair which are such fabulous examples of excessive pattern.

What do you think?  Excessive colour and pattern – is it ever good?

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