2014 – Interior & Market Trends

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    The Secret Agent Report - 2014 - Interior & Market Trends

    February 2014

    2014 - Interior & Market Trends


    The diffusion of information theory, radiant orchid and masculine interior design. In this months report, we change up our thinking yet again to explore trends and how they work within the market.


    Visit our Pinterest Board to get the visuals: http://www.pinterest.com/secretagentHQ/interiors-of-2014/

    Warehouse/industrial – on the way OUT
    Modern contemporary Euro/French – IN

    Firstly, let’s set the scene and understand how trends work. Trend setters are generally ahead of the curve, as the majority of the market sits comfortably within the fat of the bell curve represented by the early majority and late majority.

    It would be interesting to track the rise of popularity of the Portugese Water Dog breed after the Obama Family acquired theirs in 2008! This type of thinking takes me back to my marketing lectures. The concept can be most easily understood with the diffusion of innovation theory (below).

    When talking trends, what may be in vogue for the trendy elite often means it is still a good year away for the majority of people.


    Diffusion of Innovations is a theory that seeks to explain how, why, and at what rate new ideas and technology spread through cultures.



    The home of John Henry in Melbourne sits in a warehouse style building. A steel frame structure, the entire space is clean white, with high ceilings and lots of light. Filled with classic furniture from Alessi, Cassina, and Herman Miller among others.

    For a good while now, Melbourne has been in love with open plan warehouse living and the miss matched industrial interior fit-out that lends so easily to it. A good, unstructured warehouse can be breathtaking, and not too tricky to put together. A keen eye and the right space can often lead to a breathtaking home. The key to successful open plan living is having A LOT of space, and as people move closer to the city centre, space becomes rarer. So too does the open plan warehouse spaces that are now often being carved up and split into 2 residences. And lets face it, open plan warehouse/industrial design often doesn’t work when space – especially vertical space – is limited.

    The industrial open plan trend is slowly giving way to a more structured, deliberate interior design. Whether this is because people are valuing their privacy more in a world where less and less is sacred, or space is now a rare commodity in inner cities and people are tired and craving something new. The reasons remain up for debate.


    Tucked away spaces over different levels, while still lending to open, shared spaces like the kitchen/dining room scenario are becoming more appreciated.

    Deliberately placed furniture and a structured interior are all the rage. So too are interiors with clean lines, deliberate bold pieces, thoughtful colour choices and a modern chic Parisian feel.

    The art is in capturing a level of warmth, while still remaining clean and chic. Paris does this very well. And if you still aren’t convinced about colour being important, Pantone doesn’t agree, naming Radiant Orchid 18-3224 the shade that will dominate packaging, product, interior design and the catwalk for the next 12 months.


    Interior designed by Jean-Christophe Aumas. A very colourful, playful, yet clean Parisian interior.

    This ‘modern chic Euro/Parisian’ style (for want of a better phrase) has been well and truly adopted by our innovators and early trendsetters, and will be warmly embraced by the fat of the bell curve.

    Pops of colour throughout clean interiors and deliberately placed furniture and artwork that complements the space. No longer will clutter of the past or oddly put together mismatched-arrays-of-craft-things fly. With this comes a push for quality and longevity, and a school of thought that I love. Can a product get better the more you use it? YES is the short answer. Take a hard wood timber floor, or a solid classical arm chair. Buy once and buy right and the patina of age will lend kindly to it. European cities tend to do this well, and we will embrace this.


    Move over the ‘metrosexual’ and make room for the rise of the male interior designer. As more and more men spend time at home and take interest in the home, the male preference will shine through. This may be represented by bolder, more practical design and perhaps the resurgence of the sacred study. We will see an increased focus on technology around the house and home automation, as well as the “internet of things”.

    We recently attended Le Web in Paris, a conference for startups and web entrepreneurs, where we saw the founders of Nest talk. Nest create smart devices for the home which include thermostats and smoke detectors. Google recently validated the push towards home automation and the internet of things by purchasing Nest for $3.2 billion. If this isn’t a testament of things to come I don’t know what is.

    One last piece of advice…. What is well and truly in, is something that works for you, a space that you feel comfortable in, love and can call your own.

    On a side note, keep an eye out for indoor plants, cacti, pineapples, and vintage Australiana if you haven’t already noticed them popping up in shop fronts around town.

    White-washed brick and 60’s European glass will also be HOT! Our Pinterest is our ‘mood board’ for 2014…