Material Trends

October 28, 2017

Good design could not be created without the right materials. As design practices develop and techniques expand, new avenues of creation are becoming apparent. Whether it is modernising existing materials or creating new ones, there is no denying the industry is alive with fresh ideas. Whilst researching for projects, we are constantly picking up on new material trends, here are some elements we really love, here at House Of Grey.

Stone Surfaces

With it’s versatility in finish, and reliability in strength and ware, stone makes the perfect material for design. Whether it be within interiors, architecture or furniture, Stone has been a significant element in production for thousands of years, but with so many years of history behind it, how do we keep it contemporary?

As more and more designer’s diversify their craft, a number of makers are trying their hands at surface design, joining the already established creators, resulting in a influx of great, new stone based textures.

A fantastic trend coming through within these contemporary practices, is the idea of playing with the raw elements of the stone and experimenting with a more graphic and linear finish. This juxtaposition creates a really interesting, modern surface, without loosing the materials natural qualities. Here are a few of our favourite contemporary surfaces that illustrate this trend.

Image credit Katie Gillies

Image Credit Heliot & Co

Image Credit Salvatori



Jesmonite is a highly versatile material – it can be used to replicate the appearance and texture of any surface finish in any number of colours.

‘The combination of natural raw materials with a special blend of water-based pure acrylic polymers create a unique family of materials that have a number of product benefits that make Jesmonite superior to other building materials.’ Jesmonite

Jesmonite’s extensive adaptability is what makes it so appealing to designers. The innovative material was crowned the Winner of London Design Fair’s 2017 Material of the year award. In celebration, British Designer Zuza Mengham, created a series of sculptures made from the substance and showcased them at the prolific design fair;

Lichen X Jesmonite, is a collaborative exhibition between Mengham and Visual artist Seb Camilleri, celebrating the fantastic natural qualities of Lichen, the fascinating colours and textures of the organism. Mengham used Jesmonite and mulched Lichen in layers within a mould, and allowed it to set gradually. The outcome were these exquisite sculptures, full of texture and colour.


Image Credit Wallpaper Magazine

Another designer we love who creates beautiful works out of Jesmonite is London based Craftsman, Malgorzata Bany. Working in a variety of practices, Bany produces elegant sculpture and furniture pieces using the revolutionary material. We love how Bany manages to execute a simplistic aesthetic and yet her work still has so much texture and depth to it.

Image Credit Malgorzata Bany & The NewCraftsman

Adapting Materials

With research ever advancing and processes constantly in experimentation, designers are becoming able to adapt the materials they are using for fit their needs. That is precisely what British designer Max Lamb achieved when creating Marmoreal.

Known for his experimentation with materials, Lamb has always been creative in the development of his craft. From Plastic to Volcanic Rock, Lamb switches between the traditional and new age, within both technique and material, creating unique, innovative pieces.

Marmoreal is an engineered marble with a terrazzo like composite created by Lamb for architectural materials manufacturer Dzek. Made up of 95% Marble and 5% Polyester, Marmoreal has a strength incomparable to other stone substances, giving it a huge versatility in use. Lamb created a small furniture collection from Marmoreal, to demonstrate its modern capabilities.

Image Credit Max Lamb and Dzek