Clerkenwell Design Week. A must for workspace interior designers.

June 10, 2024

Clerkenwell Design Week, or CDW, is an annual celebration that brings together the finest minds and brands in the world of interior design. Held in the heart of London’s Clerkenwell district. It’s a three-day event showcasing the latest trends and innovations in interior design.

CDW is an invaluable source of inspiration for workspace interior designers and a barometer for emerging trends. This year’s event was no exception, and we took a lot of insight home with us.

Versatile and informal seating

One of the most noticeable trends at this year’s CDW was the proliferation of informal seating options. Think seats and spaces that can be used in multiple ways. We’ve come a long way since bean bags hit offices a couple of decades ago. We saw lots of seats that can be moved around easily such as leather balls, mini desks with tables just the right height for virtual meetings or taking notes. Or comfier areas for reading.

Modern workspaces are designed to be flexible, allowing for a variety of uses within the same area. This way teams can have lots of spontaneous collaboration and creativity.

Natural colours and sustainable materials

You may be thinking, ‘Everyone already knows that neutrals are extremely popular’. This is true, but we wanted to report that neutrals continue to dominate. This may be because this design choice is led by sustainability over trends. Sustainable materials often use neutral natural sources as a default — but not always! Neutral colours are also considered to be calmer and less stimulating. So, multiple bright walls may not actually be suitable for neurodivergent workers.

Biophilic design and greenery

Another key theme: the integration of biophilic design elements, such as plants and natural light. This trend goes beyond just adding a few potted plants. Biophilic design mimics the natural environment. From green walls to indoor gardens, the idea is to create spaces that reduce stress and enhance cognitive function. You can read more about biophilic design in our blog. It feels rude to refer to biophilic design as a trend, when it’s more like a design foundation.

High decor and creative freedom.

Traditionally, landlord restrictions and the need for flexibility have limited office decor. No one wants to mosaic their office, only to have to move to a new place once their team grows. However, innovations in design, such as magnetic flooring and wall panelling, are allowing for greater creative freedom. These innovations mean that offices can now feature more intricate elements, without permanent alterations. This allows companies to infuse their brand identity and culture into the workspace without having to scrap the investment further down the line.

Agile work solutions and hot-desking

With the rise of hybrid work models, agile work solutions have become essential. CDW highlighted numerous innovations, from storage lockers and mobile storage solutions to finger-print-resistant wood surfaces. (So your desk space isn’t covered in someone else’s sticky fingerprints; it feels clean and new every time.)

These elements are designed to facilitate hot-desking and remote work, ensuring that employees have the flexibility to work from anywhere while keeping their equipment safe and their workspace clean and organised.

Private and soundproof spaces

As open-plan offices continue to evolve; the need for private, soundproof spaces has become more pronounced. This year’s CDW showcased a variety of solutions, including soundproof meeting rooms and focus pods with air conditioning capabilities.

These spaces are perfect for roles that require concentration or frequent meetings — such as sales teams and project managers. They provide a quiet refuge in a busy office environment, ensuring that employees can work without distraction.

After all, work looks different to different people depending on whether you’re a coder or a business development manager. And we all, at times, need to go into deep focus. These pods are also great for neurodivergent workers, who may need complete silence to hyperfocus or they will get distracted very easily.

Advanced coffee and water solutions

No modern office is complete without state-of-the-art coffee and water solutions. CDW featured innovative taps that can purify and heat water instantly. These solutions improve convenience and support your team’s overall health and well-being. After all, who can get through the day without a good brew and some fresh water?

Integrated tech

From smart lighting systems that adapt to natural light conditions to interactive whiteboards and other digital tools designed to facilitate collaboration and enhance productivity. The future workspace is evidently one where tech is seamlessly integrated into the design. Helping to streamline processes and create a more efficient, comfortable environment.

Lighting and acoustics

Lighting and acoustics are important ingredients for a comfortable workspace. Poor lighting and excessive noise can impact productivity and well-being.

CDW presented a range of solutions, such as acoustic light figures and sound-absorbing wall panels, designed to address these issues. These innovations ensure that lighting is multi-sourced and soft, while also reducing noise levels to create a more conducive work environment.

Clerkenwell Design Week continues to be a central hub for workspace interior designers. This year’s trends highlight the importance of flexibility, sustainability, and employee well-being. At Formm, we’re always up to date with the latest trends and design solutions, so our portfolio is full of sustainable, technically integrated, and beautifully designed work. Take a look, and feel free to give us a call or email us if you have any questions about how your workspace could be improved.