A New Naturalism

Once reserved for the realms of organic foods and specialist natural skincare, our desire for naturals is becoming more prevalent across all areas of our lives. In response to being in a continuous state of digital connectedness, naturalism’s value is increasing as we reject over manipulated products and experiences. We desire living, breathing spaces, the sense that our air is bursting with freshness, oxygen and negative ions.

In a digitally driven culture, our desire to get back to nature across many aspects of our lives has greater value than ever. In our everyday lives, we want to combine the best aspects of a natural lifestyle with the convenience of todays digital connectivity. And as a result, naturalism has never had such a premium status.

We are seeing more and more odes to nature embraced across fashion, beauty, interiors, architecture and graphic design. These designs reflect our desire to embrace the beautiful intricacies of natural visual codes and cues; raw, traditional materials, earthy colour palettes and patterns, hand crafted products and the true quality of purity. We are celebrating the 'un-designed', embracing a lack of traditional grids and symmetry. Even photography is championing an unfinished, unstaged aesthetic creating an authenticity that pays tribute to being in the moment. High-octane living and our rapid response culture makes us crave calm, earthy colour palettes to help ground us. Rich yet muted greens, browns and warming colour tones provide relief and relaxation. Fashion brand SLVDR are championing the outdoor elements with unique style. We love the juxtaposition created by the combination of natural inspired camo print with premium fabric.

Materials are displayed in their most natural state. The over manufactured, synthetically ‘perfected’ and embellished is rejected, and we give premium status to exposing materials in their own right. Part of Sydney’s high end Hellenic Club, Beta Bar sits above Alpha, the modern restaurant. The interior design combines elements of old school luxury with naturalism. Walls are brusquely stripped to reveal original brickwork and layered rendering, while doors with delicate fretwork echo the curves of the Victorian façade’s arches. The nod to historical quality and confidence of raw materials creates a modern premium quality.

Graphic patterns and typography champion handmade craft. We are seeing brands and products celebrate original, bespoke art and design. Patterns are inspired by textile design, modern graphic art and printing – and given their own bespoke contemporary feel. The blend coffee station creates a new fresh, modern style by celebrating graphic pattern in its own right. 

What this means for brand design and packaging?

  • Let naturalism create a sense of calm relaxation – a mental sanctuary through design.

  • Naturalism has never been more premium or modern. Design natural with a quality contemporary feel.

  • Make use of natural colour palettes that ground us, eluding a realness that creates exclusivity.

  • Champion pattern, craft and art to and use this to create joyful authenticity.

We explore the aesthetic worlds that are impacting brand design today and tomorrow in our next issue of design trends magazine Radar. 'The Design Issue' is coming soon! To order your copy please email us here and we will get one to you hot off the press.