A couple of weeks ago I noticed that Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, the Ruler of Dubai, had tweeted about the importance of preserving the past in order to achieve in the future. He couldn't be more right; we are entering a period where looking back is the way forward.
As we enter the 2012 spring/summer season, we embark on a journey towards discovering common cultural connections.
One of our favourite themes right now is "deconstruct to reconstruct". We're seeing this happen in North Africa and across the Middle East as the foundations of countries are being shaken. In design, fragmented and networked structures and patterns take inspiration from these regions, joining together to create a contemporary classic aesthetic. Key pieces within this trend mirror the overall theme of combining many parts to make a stronger whole; products with connecting elements create unity.
Last week I mentioned metallics, and this season we are advocating the mixing of white metals with warm metals: tarnished pewter, brushed steel and blackened silver with pale gold, hammered copper and antique bronze. The traditional patterns and crafts of the Middle East shine in these metals and can be admired against minimal backdrops. This is all about establishing a sophisticated and intricate balance of the old and the new.
This trend examines the concepts of tradition and modernity - it's about regeneration and the use of traditional materials and styles in a contemporary yet classic way. The 2012 season will be a time to be patriotic, to revisit forgotten history and to embrace the past. Through a renewed discovery of our past and our reignited pride in who we are, we will have a vision of what can be achieved in the future.
By focusing on bringing all of our values and traditions together, we will begin to create a new, common community. Francesco Binfarč's Damier sofa for Edra perfectly captures this idea in its modern take on majlis furniture. It has a respect for past traditions and for a way of life that should be preserved, but also embraces a more contemporary aesthetic that will fit into modern homes for all cultures. We can all learn from this ideal of sitting together, sharing time and talking. In this way a dialogue is formed between the past and the present, resulting in a stylistic pathway we can follow into the future.
Work this trend with a palette of arid, weather-worn shades including dry parchment, sand and sienna. You can then lift these sun-baked desert tones with hazy blue/green accents.
Also think about dark malachite and iridescent beetle-wing blue and purple to add greater depth to your interior scheme. And elements of dark, exotic wood tones; matte black and mother-of-pearl will really complete this look.