Embracing frugality, other areas to impact lifestyle, interiors in 2023

Push for progress, rise of frugal living, improving well-being, digitized design, and emerging social and values-led networks are key areas that will impact product development for lifestyle and interiors businesses by 2023.

The WGSN report furnished by the Design Center of the Philippines said the urgent need for inclusive and regenerative change will drive demand for proactive products and business practices that actively improve the world.

It said proactively designed products that do more good will stand out to consumers as markets become inundated with products designed to do less harm.

“As consumers pressure brands to become climate-positive and socially equitable, ethical practices will go mainstream and become more ambitious. Companies will need to focus on designing out waste, adopting circular models, collaborating equitably and respectfully
with makers and suppliers, and redesigning even the most humble, everyday products with sustainability at their core,” it added.

The WGSN said long-lasting, reusable and circular products will gain importance as consumers look to save costs and reduce waste amid income insecurity and recession.

The report said it will thus be imperative to develop products that can be made and used efficiently, and that enable self-sufficiency, aligning with your core consumersʼ values and interests.

“Reuse is becoming mainstream, and as DIY (do it yourself) booms – thanks in part to people upskilling themselves during lockdowns – more self-sufficient lifestyles will start to feel within reach to consumers. Products that will last a long time and that can be reused, restyled, repaired and resold will be key here,” it added.

The report also urged brands to explore hi-tech and low-fidelity (lo-fi) solutions that respond to mood and improve well-being as it is now core to consumer priorities.

Hi-tech and lo-fi solutions will both be important, including advanced smart home solutions and the rise of ‘invisible design’, where products and experiences draw on sensory elements such as smell and light to set a mood, it said.

“In 2023, designers and developers will need to account directly for emotional needs in products, and track and optimize how they intersect with not only mental fitness, but also health and wellness in the home, at work and outdoors,” it added.

The WGSN said digitized design will go mainstream, opening up new retail channels and boosting the importance of customization and flexible design.

Consumers, it said, are proving to be increasingly open to tech-driven solutions for the home, and business models, such as rental and subscription have proved resilient during the pandemic.

“Now, as gaming goes mainstream and virtual worlds begin to grow, a new wave of behaviors and products will emerge. Customization will be increasingly important in product design, and digital-first decor will be a trend to watch,” it said.

The report further said emerging social and values-led networks will become more influential on consumer purchasing decisions, and brands will need to implement new strategies to reach these communities.

The WGSN said collaboration is now core to interiors retail, and it will be important for brands to build co-design into strategy over the next few years via direct dialogue with consumers, communities and like-minded brands.

“From neighborhood networks to online communities, lifestyle and interiors brands now need to reach consumers where they live and where their passions lie,” it added.

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