First Quarter Review: 2019’s Best Design Trends 

By: Eat Print Love |

LET’S REVIEW

2019’s design trends have been a hot topic since last year, with myriad voices across the design sphere weighing in with their predictions. We’ve done our homework to bring you what we at EPL believe are 2019’s most innovative and ambitious trends, reflecting truly beautiful design. 2019 is here and we’re nearly through the first quarter – let’s review.

FUTURISTIC DESIGN

  James Gilleard, Alexander Wells 2019
Nouvelle etiquette for Week-end de l’art contemporain Grand-Est 2018

Space-age themes and future aesthetics are everywhere, from photography to typography, to specialty printing processes. Photographic effects such as glitching and wave overlays provide an interstellar feel, while gradients bring a future vintage vibe, especially when applied to typography. Metallics are poised to reign in 2019, with foil technologies being employed to bring out-of-this-world design to life.  

MINIMALISM

Red Antler for Prose

While we agree that the clean, simple messaging expressed through minimalist design remains perpetually stylish, we can’t ignore the renaissance moment that minimalism is having right now.

Minimalist design cuts through the digital noise we experience on a daily basis. It gets directly to one’s core message, stripping away unnecessary and sometimes distracting elements. We see minimalist graphics and clean typography being combined with flat design in super-simple, super-appealing packaging. Black and white, or bold shapes and bright colors – both work in a clean, simple way. Illustrations with an organic, hand drawn feel help to accomplish this, even when working with bold color palettes.

We’re betting that we’ll continue to see beautifully simple designs and packaging shine as we move through the year.

Caterina Bianchini Design for Selfridges & Co.
makebardo for The Happy Living Project

SPECIALTY PRINTING AND NON-TRADITIONAL SIZES

When it comes to print design, never underestimate the impact of creating a piece that cannot be replicated on a screen. Non-traditional dimensions, asymmetry, unexpected folds – these features unique to print design provide myriad creative options, creating an inimitable experience for any audience. Embellishments such as foils and spot varnishes, add tactile interest to print pieces and bring even more creative possibility. We recognize the impact beautiful design can have beyond the digital realm for 2019, and we’re confident we’re not the only ones.

FONT AND TYPOGRAPHY EXPERIMENTATION

Andrew Footit for Billboard Magazine, Feb 2019

2019 is the year of innovative typography. Custom fonts provide designers with endless possibilities and ultimate creative freedom, while giving their clients an affordable avenue to create a dramatic impact. Custom and unique typography help to carve niche spaces, setting brands apart from the rest of the pack. We’ve noticed a trend towards tactile typography, taking inspiration from elements found in nature, such as smooth, cool marble to organic wood grain effects.  Designs can be almost instantly elevated by bringing the look of premium natural materials to the world of fonts. We know we’ll continue to see these types of sophisticated fonts through 2019 as designers find even more avenues to express themselves through typography, and brands seek logos and fonts with ever-greater character.

Ben Johnston, 2019

 BOLD COLORS

Olivia Ward, Carl-Hampus Vallin, Sarah Jean Recht, David Weber, Patchara Charoensiri, Hybrid Design for Mohawk Maker Quarterly 15
Bold, impactful colors are something we’re seeing not only in predictions from industry leaders such as Pantone and Shutterstock, but also in all of the most moving design trends for this year. Pantone’s color of the year, Living Coral, is an energizing yet warm shade that evokes the best of what 2019 has to offer in design. Whether swirled through elaborate, cosmic themes, incorporated in futuristic gradients, or standing on its own in a simple, minimalist design or custom font, Living Coral summarizes for us the best design trends of 2019. Check out Pantone’s palette exploration for more examples of how big, bold colors are making an impact in 2019 here.

We’re three months in and based on what we’re seeing so far, we feel confident that 2019 is set to be a great year for innovative print design.

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