product trends : a Harvey Norman trip

I’ve never been into Harvey Norman—let alone look at current products and their trends in detail—so this trip was clearly an eye-opener for me!! These are some current trends I took note of:

Retro Trend

Pastel colours and bulky shapes are making their way back into the current trends (to my surprise! I thought people preferred space-saving, minimalistic designs these days). Their aesthetics are affected by emotion more than the other two factors in the aesthetic triangle. Looking at their exaggerated sizes, these products are not concerned with human factors as much as the bold statement they set.

Also these tiny knobs with EVEN TINIER scale for toasters’ heat control. They may look cute, but not really cute anymore when your fingers keep slipping trying to turn these small knobs. The extremely minuscule numbers are also a bit hard to read; one will have to bend down a little just to read them and adjust the knobs to their desired number.

…and on the far right side, we have a bread rack—or a vague bun warmer, as the label calls it. Perhaps multifunctionality (or overfunctionality?) is also considered a trend of 2017.


No More Buttons?

Another thing I noticed is that there are less products that involve pressing, rather more sliding and, in some cases not shown in pictures, tapping on touch screens. The first three pictures above show the current trend in hand mixers; the first two making use of the sliding tool while the third one takes it to the next level with a sleek scrolling feature.

There is a similar trend in the toasters and the coffee makers in the pictures in the first point as well, where they involve more turning knobs rather than pressing buttons.


Organic Forms

Despite the returning trend of bulky shapes in kitchen appliances, some trends still remain, such as organic forms. I noticed this trend particularly in hairdryers where we are attracted to sleek surfaces with well-thought details and comfortable handgrip. This trend, unlike the first one, takes human factors into account and changes the aesthetics accordingly—resulting in forms that fit the hand nicely.


Overall Thoughts

It was definitely an interesting experience to see how some trends change over time, and how others stay the same. And the best part about going to an actual store is that I was able to touch these things (with care, of course)—something I won’t be able to do just by researching online.


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