Asda adds ‘grown-up’ homeware to its unicorn range

Asda has launched a new unicorn range under its George at Asda label, following a rise in demand from older audiences.

The supermarket chain’s website saw 79,000 searches for ‘unicorn’ last December and a further 12,700 searches for the mythical creature in the first week of January.

Asda said its new collection of unicorn-inspired products is geared towards ‘nostalgic adults’. It includes dinnerware, cushions, tableware, glassware, bathroom accessories and ornaments.

Describing the range, Asda said: ‘With an air of whimsical chic, this is perfect for the trend-orientated Millennials who inspired the range. Whilst the unicorn is still very much the focal point, stars, clouds and rainbows – in addition to metallic and iridescent finishes – expand the theme, making this collection incredibly ‘Instagram-worthy’.’

George at Home homeware designer Natalie Ratcliffe commented: “This is the third unicorn range for George and we fully expect this one to be as successful, if not more so, than the previous ranges.

“The difference is that we’ve responded to the overwhelming demand for a more ‘grown-up’ selection of products, and given customers exactly what they want. The unicorn has officially graduated, in terms of style, for 2018.”

She continued: “We knew nostalgia would be a key player this year as part of ‘Cosmic Retro’ [one of the six interior ‘stories’ for 2018 highlighted by Natalie] but the unicorn as a standalone micro trend is still going from strength to strength.”

‘Cosmic Retro’ joins ‘Botanic Bohemia’, ‘Home Haven’, ‘Culture Clash’, ‘Opu-luxe’ and ‘Urban Revival’ on Natalie’s list of predicted design trends for 2018. She said:

“Cosmic Retro is the unicorn of 2018 with its juxtaposition of space age and retro. This trend provides new nostalgia: think disco balls, iridescent metals, astrology and sequins.

“With space tourism something we could see in this lifetime and advances in technology, our interest in space, the galaxy and the stars has been renewed – and this trend fully embodies a dreamlike wonderment.

“The colour scheme is taken straight from the skies. Black, and the entire spectrum of purple and silver, are the palette for the entire trend. Coloured marble, crystals, iridescent acrylic and high shine metallic metals are prominent, while prints are inspired by horoscopes, the constellations and astronauts.

“For ’90s kids, it’s a revival of their childhood. For Generation Z, it’s the newest in a line of social media-friendly interiors – which is sure to be a hit on Instagram.

“Blurring the boundaries of indoor living and the natural environment, this trend brings the outside in, reflecting a cultural impulse to shun technology and get back to nature.

“Botanic Bohemia isn’t just an aesthetic but a responsibility – with sustainability and awareness of the environment at its heart. Think natural unfinished materials like wood, stone, chunky wool knits and linens.

“This colour palette channels mother earth with tones of green, brown and purple, while the print inspiration comes from nature with floral, leaves, woodland and even mushroom prints taking centre stage. This trend is already evident in property developments, with the rise of rooftop gardens, living walls and indoor trees and parks.

“Our mental wellbeing has come to the forefront of the public sphere this year with an increase in home and work lives merging – thanks to advancements in technology and us being more connected than ever before.

“As a result, there has been a need for personal retreats in the home that offer a place of cool, calm sanctuary from the stresses of our everyday lives – perfect for reading, nesting and thinking.

“This trend embodies minimalism with soft considered design that doesn’t distract, taking its inspiration from modern libraries. It is a build on the Scandi trend of Hygge that was prominent throughout 2017.

‘Marble, blond wood, concrete and copper are the materials of choice, with a muted colour palette of greys, blues and whites. This is simple, considered and curated design, with every item in the room having a purpose.

“Motivated by a growing desire among Millennials to lead a more nomadic lifestyle, travel the world and explore new cultures, this trend brings to the forefront design from around the globe in an interiors melting pot.

“Taking note from ‘Botanic Bohemia’, there is a rejection of technology and the aesthetic is an eclectic mix of materials, prints and objects that hold meaning or have a story behind their arrival in the home.

“Think natural rich colours, deep earthy browns and reds, copper tones and plush greens – whilst fabrics range from woven fibres, canvas, fur and leather to dark woods and copper.

“This trend doesn’t take itself too seriously either, with kitschy animal ceramics, painted characters and pom-pom and tassels galore. Think fun, cultural and eclectic.

“Opu-luxe is a merging of 2017’s luxe trend with the new story of opulence, which draws heavily from ‘Japanism’ – which was bubbling under the surface throughout last year.

“The colour scheme is deep and sumptuous, with jewel tones providing relief from the darkest of blues, greens and blacks that are a fundamental part of this trend.

“Of all the trends for 2018, print is the most prominent here, with decadent florals and detailed butterflies taking centre stage. Rich velvets, heavy embellishment, peacock feathers and lacquered black finishes are the supporting accents. Beautiful Japanese patterns, techniques and finishes are set to filter into our homes this year.

“Urban Revival is a build on the industrial trend that saw concrete become one of our favourite finishes in 2017. Inspiration is now moving and adapting to a more urban take on this.

“Think shipping containers refurbished for offices, chipboard (a temporary material) now being used to make furniture, and graffiti becoming a commissioned form of art in hotels and offices.

“This trend is not exclusive to, but is more widely expected to occur in, cities where the inspiration is drawn from the streets and reflected in the indoor spaces.

“The materials, which are the key to embodying this trend, include steel, recycled plastic, chipboard and performance textiles, while the colour scheme is bright pops of neon colour.”

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