Blurring Borders

Design Concept 2016/17 by CHIYODA

The once clear dividing lines between the different worlds are only to be seen in a blurred form. Loud calls of “no go” die away or mutate in the multi-layered reality to unending echoes which only throw back a muffled “Go”. And yet – anyone who believes he can see a trend to arbitrariness is mistaken. On the contrary: Between rigid rules and arbitrariness a megatrend has developed, which demands from designers and product developers that they should work wit- hout a safety net and a double floor in order to open colourful, faceted, exciting, new worlds to the consumers. The Belgian printer Chiyoda has recognised this situation and turned to face this task with the trend manifesto “Blurring Borders” and the development of appropriate decors.


For those who accept that everything is in a state of flux, that borders become blurred, that opposites are in fact two sides of the same coin, the world of “Blurring Borders”, the current trend concept of Chiyoda, becomes accessible. 

People like to orientate themselves by the themes and values, which they have known from early childhood. Today, however, they wish to integrate everything that they have learned in the subsequent years, even though at first sight this does not seem to fit into that “old” world. But that is also true of other preferences and theme worlds. The increasingly common desire of many consumers for pro- ducts beyond the choice of “either-or” leads to a world of blurred borders. Hard times for dogmatists and purists! Exciting, enjoyable times for all creative persons and for connoisseurs. Even when, today, we move around in a world beyond prohibition of free thought, this does not mean that absolutely everything is possible. Designers and product developers have to find the right blend of border cros- sing and border demarcation, and give today ́s consumers the feeling of both security and freedom.

It was a clever tactic by the Belgian surfaces specialist Chiyoda to give the current trend presentation the title “Blurring Borders”, because it is here that both the value and variability of borders are expressed. The four different sub-themes assigned by Chiyoda demonstrate how frequent the blurring of supposedly clear borders is in the preferences of the various consumer groups. This necessitates appropriate decors, colours, surfaces and materials. Chiyoda shows how these appear under the themes “composed spaces”, “creative spaces”, “nostalgic spaces” and ”protected spaces.”

Every theme is explained by a range of colours, which illustrates the characteristic features of each theme.

Here, it also becomes evident that a decor can be used in several theme complexes, depen- ding upon which colour tone is selected. The Chiyoda design specialists have found that it is increasingly the colouring of a decor that determines the assignment to a theme world. For example, the recently developed oak decor “Grand Oak” fits into all four themes when it is appropriately matched in terms of colour.

An intensive search carried out by the Chiyoda team in the areas of interior design, architecture, fashion, art and automobile construction influenced the concept “Blurring Borders”. Furthermore, the team confronted its own fin- dings with trend forecasts from international trend agencies and trend experts.

Author: Frank Stein for CHIYODA