I hear a lot of interior designers talking about furniture trends. What are the current trends. What trends are on their way out. But most importantly, what are the trends of the future?
I don’t know the inspiration process for every designer, but I imagine it involves lots of looking through design magazines and online furniture galleries. Both of which have a glaring problem when searching for the next big thing – they are all references to things made in the past.
What if you could see what furniture design looks like… in the future?
Note to generate these images we will be using Google’s Bard. I tried Adobe’s Generative Fill but it seemed more suited to modifying existing images rather than generating new concepts. Well, I mean, it does both but Bard seemed to be the better tool for this task.
Alright, I know we cant actually look into the future. So for all you cynics out there just think of the techniques explored here as a new way to expand your creativity when you’re thinking of your next furniture design.
Let’s Combine Some Current Trends
If there is one thing I know about design it is that the most common way to come up with something new is to combine a couple existing things.
There are lots of trends going on right now but two that I’ve noticed are channeled tight backs and also really tall seat cushions. As an aside, we’ve been making some tall seat cushions, and I’m talking like 14″. They are so comfortable when done right. I’m a big fan.
Anyways, let’s see what AI can do with those two concepts.
“Create an image of a sofa with tall seat cushions and a channeled back”.
These are… pretty rad!
I think that one in the bottom left is actually pretty practical and still compelling. The top right is for that client who can’t make up their mind and wants it all – channeled back, English roll arms, turned legs – give me one of each! The bottom right has that mid-century feel, even so far as having Cadillac seat backs.
Let’s try this again with some things we’ve seen with swivel chairs…
“Create an image of a swivel club chair with a channeled back and exposed wood”.
Let’s Re-Invent Some Iconic Styles
I’m curious if Bard will understand “known” sofa styles. I’m already impressed it was able to understand specific furniture terms. Other AI tools seemed to have trouble with words like “channeled”.
“Create an image of a Camaleonda sofa and exposed wood base and a single piece back frame with shallow tufting”.
I tried a few different queries and I couldn’t get Bard to deviate from a design that wouldn’t be immediately recognizable as a bizarro version of the original. Oh well, let’s try a different one.
“Create an image of a Vladimir Kagan sofa with loose seat cushions with horizontal striped fabric and two wood square bases”.
If anything I appreciate AI acknowledging how difficult pattern matching would be on these designs.
Let’s Look Into the Future
To be honest this is where I originally intended to go with this article so let’s get into it.
The next batch of designs I think are truly something I could see being made in our shops and pieces within an interior that would raise some heads. If you are looking for inspiration to where things are headed, I think it might be these “future” queries.
Check this out…
“Create an image of what sofas will look like in the year 2100”.
These are all really stunning. Granted when you add “floral” as a modifier Bard really assumes you have a thing for flowers. And the fabric on the top right one, isn’t that just the natural progression of the fuzzy boucle everyone is using right now?
Let’s do one more during this time period and see beds…
“Create an image of what upholstered beds will look like in the year 2100”.
These all seam really stunning and not terribly difficult to build. I hope to see a handful of AI generated bed quote requests in the near future.
Let’s Look Into the Far Future
I think it is time to get silly. I was rather picky when generating the images above, but all rules are now out of the window. Who cares about practicality in building, these future people will have 3D printers making all of their furniture anyways.
“Create an image of what sofa designs looks like in the year 4000”.
It seems that AI sees futurism as blobs of clay.
But in reality we’ll see seating as more than just fabric, foam, and wood in the future. Let’s see if we can’t go further and see where humanity pushes the functionality of sofa utility.
“Create an image of what seating looks like in the year 5000”.
I think Bard and other AI image tools really will become part of a designer’s toolkit.
Every day I talk to a designer that is trying to convey a design they have in their head onto paper. Making image collages and drawing notes on top of them seems very archaic when you think it might be possible to direct Bard to generate a lifelike image of exactly what you want.
And really, some of the stuff above I generated in a a couple hours of research truly would make wonderful real furniture.
Remember, quotes on Buildlane are free to interior designers and trade professionals. Want to come up with a cool new design and see how much it would cost to actually produce? Knock yourself out. We can’t wait to see which designer has us build the first piece of furniture based on an AI image!