It will come as no surprise to anyone who’s dipped even the smallest toe into the hospitality pond that interior design is as important to gastronomic success as the food itself. Every year we see exciting and innovative styles hit the eateries of Britain; some are resounding successes that spawn copycat bars and cafes over the length and breadth of the country, whilst some fall into the category of ‘what were they thinking?’ As we enter into the final stretch of 2013, it’s time to look back at the style success stories of the year so we can prepare ourselves for everything 2014 is bound to hold.
Multicultural menus are nothing new in Britain, but in 2014 continental cuisine will be about more than just the menu. The concept of fine dining has been shifting for years from formal, stiff-upper-lip affairs to a casual, all inclusive event. To accompany the trend of sharing bowls of olives, tapas and antipasti platters with a tipple in our favourite pubs, in 2014 we will see an explosion of countertop dining, communal long tables and eating meals right at the bar.
It’s not hard to see why creating a casual environment where you can interact with new people and share experiences is gaining such quick momentum with Britain’s diners. Young professionals eat out more than any other demographic and favour a less formal environment (and cheaper food) than their parents’ generation, and let’s be honest, the last thing we want when we get out of the office and go out for food is stuffiness. Earthy tones, natural materials, comfortable stools and long tables are driving this style trend that is going from strength to strength.
Posh Speedy Nosh
Photo Credits (Flickr CC): Pub by toddwight1
Life is speeding up and our restaurants are joining the race; many restaurants are starting to take advantage of the fact that we want great food, and we want it right now. We’re all trying to turn away from fast food eateries in order to live a healthier lifestyle, but the promise of a meal in minutes is too enticing a prospect to pass up every time.
Modern restaurants are offering the same fast food experience but with high quality cuisine. Instead of waiting to be seated at a secluded table for two, you can place your order at the bar and find yourself a seat on a stool, on a sofa or at a counter while you wait for your hand battered fish or your artisan burger for a few short minutes, before going about the rest of your day.
Clean, crisp, modern furnishings are abundant in these speedy eateries. You can draw inspiration from 1950’s diners with a contemporary twist. Retro chic furnishings work well in a minimalist environment, so choose bold colours and geometric shapes to tie the look together.
Photo Credits (Flickr CC): Bar Stools by Homini:)
In 2014 we’re expecting to see style and sustainability going hand in hand. The people of Britain are doing the environment proud as every year we incorporate more and more sustainable practices into our lives; we’re recycling, eating local produce, growing our own vegetables and thinking critically about the businesses we give our money to, so if you’re a restaurant owner, it’s time to think green.
Green style is simple to achieve, it’s all about bringing the outside in. Incorporate living walls in your dining area by replacing mirrors and canvas pictures with living foliage that will naturally purify your air, have your own organic herb and vegetable gardens and only serve sustainable sea food. Incorporate natural materials into your interior design like sustainable wooden furniture. Woods have their own personal grains so every table and every chair will truly be unique.
Go Forth, And Serve Great Food
Photo Credits (Flickr CC): Bar Stools by Bracketing Life
Over the next 12 months the bar, restaurant and café trends of 2014 will unfold before us, and as long as you invest in timeless, well-crafted furniture, your interiors will flourish. If you’re looking for inspiration then Eclipse Furniture have a beautiful and versatile collection of bar and restaurant furniture; their chic and stylish tables and chairs are perfect for traditional country pubs and cutting edge modern eateries alike. Go forth into the New Year and find your 2014 style.
Editor’s Note: This post was written by Emma Smith in partnership with Eclipse Furniture; fantastic online stockists of stunning and practical bar and restaurant furniture that enhances any theme and any type of environment.