East Coast Radio House + Garden show reflects on 40 years of trends

From daring accent colours, minimalist interiors, the wallpaper craze to environmentally conscious interiors – the last four decades have revolutionised our homes and gardens to a point where we have seen it all! This year, the East Coast Radio House + Garden Show is celebrating their 40th anniversary as the longest running, biggest consumer home events in the country. 

“For the past forty years we have always strived to provide a platform for the home, outdoor and décor industry to present the latest offerings and trends to the public and this year will be no different with approximately 400 exhibitors due to be participating and an expected average attendance of 80 000. It’s always exciting to be at the cutting-edge of what the latest in design and trends are in the home and garden space but it’s also been fun to reflect on the past four decades to remember what has come before – the good, the bad and ‘different’,” shares Clive Shedlock, owner of H&G Expo.

Home and Décor Throwbacks

Like in fashion, home trends come and go but according to the East Coast Radio House + Garden Show Director, Cairey Baxter-Bruce, there are always a few key elements that they have noticed returning. “Stainless steel and rose gold are being replaced with the 1980’s favourite brass in hardware, taps and kitchen fittings which bring warmth into an interior space, especially the kitchen and bathroom. After the very minimalist trends of the last couple of years, maximalism is definitely making a comeback! Trinkets are coming out of the cupboards and being displayed instead of being hidden away,” shares Baxter-Bruce. 

Patiently awaiting the first batch of muffins as the sweet aroma fills the kitchen, we are thrown back into the 1980’s, where bold colours and excessive decor were all the rage for homemakers around the world. The postmodern era known as POMO, reminds us of our parent’s cluttered yet memorable homes where we spent our childhoods and cultivated our first individual spaces. Deep sofa pieces and brass fixtures were some of the key elements within this decade. 

The 1990’s saw the movement of minimalism. Realising we have way too much, families decluttered and moved towards a “less is more” approach. From the 1980’s, we bring some basic favourites with us to the 1990’s like brass accents. Many homes swopped out their colourful linen for white and neutral colours to craft a snug home. 

Enter the new millennium, we saw modern, new-age living emerging in the 2000s with green, flat-pack, and replica design. Concrete flooring, floating staircases and home office sheds were introduced on a more prominent level. Our homes now boast large entertainment centres to watch the latest shows and subway-tile backsplash in our bathrooms. Mason jar décor has arrived and we’re also using faux fur in most living areas. This decade focused on innovation like open-plan spaces that we have come to know and love.

Moving into the year of 2010 focused on a bespoke modern outlook more than anything. With climate change in mind, the millennial generation was focused on a clean look that included all white kitchens, accent walls and bold patterns including chevron and florals. Matte black surged in popularity and rose gold found its place in the world amongst décor on coffee tables, desks and even faucets.

The Here and Now

The start of the 2020s saw a major shift in how we lived with the pandemic inspiring a change in many home spaces. As one of the key exhibitors for this year’s East Coast Radio House + Garden Show, POP Interior Design Studio will be showcasing their design visions for 2022. 

“In certain times of change, the need for interior design becomes greater as our need to fit in and be one with our surrounding spaces becomes most important. Interior design has a great capacity to shape our lives, to heal, to bring together. It is so much more than what the space looks like and is everything about how the space makes us feel. Looking back over the last 40 years of design trends, you can see how interior design adapts to current times. The need to surround ourselves with an abundance of material objects and to fill a space during the wealth boom of the eighties has since been refined to a simpler aesthetic. Whilst the current design trend remains inspired by the bold organic forms and geometric patterns of the 1980’s, the negative space in a room has become as important as the positive space. It’s all about creating balance. With every considerable change which has an impact on us as humans, there is also a constant need for us to accommodate and adjust,” explains Giselle Ferreira, co-Founder at POP Interior Design Studio (PDS). 

The SA Property Trends market research conducted by Rainmaker Marketing in 2022, indicates that within the residential housing market in South Africa multifunctional home layouts will now supersede open plan living spaces. True to what Ferreira says about the need for people to adapt, COVID-19 has certainly impacted the current home layout trends. According to the latest Rainmaker Marketing study, in 2022 there is a continued appeal and demand for home offices and studies for kids, with broken plan layouts becoming increasingly popular that distinguish between living and working spaces. The trend for home layouts and design that enhances well-being is also high on the agenda. According to the study, there is greater emphasis being placed on creating calming, well-ventilated plant-filled environments while increasing connectivity to the natural environment using nature and incorporating organic materials and natural textures into home spaces.

“The need for flexibility and in turn flexible living has become highlighted during the lockdowns we have faced. We have been forced to look at the spaces we exist in, how these spaces promote healing, how they encourage us to let go of, connect to, move through and hold close. We have gone back to basics – to shelter, to nourish, to gather. If this period of change has taught us anything as humans, it’s to disconnect and to reconnect.  What’s become important is who we connect with, where we gather and how we bring this togetherness into our homes. It’s all about being present and celebrating the moment. It’s about authenticity, truth, compassion and humanity. This is our vision at POP Design Studio for the 2022 East Coast Radio House + Garden Show. Let’s gather,” shares Ferreira.

Apart from the stand-out displays by top designers and landscapers being a favourite at the East Coast Radio House + Garden Show, over the years the event has also expanded its offerings from home goods including furniture and appliances to now hosting celebrities like Tanya Visser who share exclusive insight and knowledge into top trends for gardens and landscapes. There will be a myriad of competitions, delectable foods and craft bars for adults, while the kids can also enjoy a host of entertainment options. This iconic Durban tourist attraction brought to you by Durban Tourism, will be held over the June-July holidays from 24 June to 3 July 2022 at the Durban Exhibition Centre and is one not to be missed! For more information visit www.housegardenshow.co.za