WELCOME TO AWOL TRENDS!

The world’s first open-source design trend database, made by designers for designers. Brought to you by AWOL Company, this free site is a database of our curated design trends that we’ve been tracking for several years, looking at viable aesthetic trends across all design disciplines. Pull down the TRENDS tab...
Read more

VISIT OUR NEW SITE

AWOL Company, the curators of AWOL Trends, has a new website! Visit AWOLcompany.com to learn about who we are, what we do, and our unique perspectives on design and the creative process. ShareTweet...
Read more

SPATIAL REINTERPRETATION

There are only so many aspects of an object that designers can influence. Physical objects have proportions, form, surfacing, color, material, finish, detailing, graphics…and that’s about it. Fundamentally, creative professionals today are dealing with the same set of realities that Greek architects or Chinese potters were considering thousands of years...
Read more

MEMPHIS 2.0

It’s hard to invent a new aesthetic. That’s probably why it happens so infrequently. However, that did not stop a young Milanese (Ettore Sottsass) and a small group of other European designers from giving it a real shot. In 1981, their Memphis aesthetic debuted at the Salone del Mobile furniture...
Read more

GENERIC CHIC

Designers in the Premium/Luxury categories have always striven to differentiate their work from the great unwashed teaming masses of regular consumer products. In trying to communicate “I am better than you”, products in these categories have relied on such design levers as length (stretched limousines), height (top hats and rooftop...
Read more

IRRATIONALISM

In the world of design, the careful study and application of the fundamental rules of aesthetics is the mark of a true craftsman. The aesthetic theme these rules have created, the modern movement of Rationalism, has deeply influenced the everyday objects in our lives. From the structures we live and...
Read more

INFOGRAPHIC ARTIFACTS

Many have said that Design is communication. Typically designers are trying to express elements of a brand’s values, or communicate a device’s functionality or proper method of use, or weave a narrative about the relevance of the object in a person’s life. Sometimes, “because it looks cool” is as deep...
Read more

VICTORIAN 2.0

In Fashion, style is mostly cyclical (with repeating themes currently on a 25-year cycle). In other design categories, however, the wavelength has been a bit longer. Roughly 150 years ago, some clever folk called the Victorians set about changing the world with their Industrial Revolution and, among other things, their...
Read more

PRIMITIVES

Form has traditionally been one of the most creatively stressful parts of the design process. Designers, marketers, and consumers put such a premium on unique, iconic, and novel forms that a disproportionate part of the creative process goes into exploring and refining them. But in the last few years, designers...
Read more

PANELED SURFACES

Traditionally in design, an object’s form takes priority. Once a form is finalized, then it is subsequently broken up into pieces for production, via parting lines, panels, segments, or assemblies. With the Paneled Surfaces trend, the construction methodology becomes the aesthetic: arrays of discreet panels interlock to define a surface,...
Read more