What transforms a space into a home, how do we enhance our way of living through design and how can the home environment play a significant role in providing inspiration for designers?

Creating for the home environment or creations which have been influenced by the home have evolved and shifted over the years as the residents needs and trends have changed, and even more so from a year of lockdowns.

ND recently caught up with ND AWARDS 2021 sponsor, Silentnight, and gained Angela Moran, Product Strategy Director, thoughts on how homes are becoming multifunctional spaces and gained exclusive insider knowledge to how design will be used to solve both practical and aesthetic problems. 

When considering the subject of ‘home’ within design, what springs to mind first?

I think of the subject of ‘home’ as very personal; whereas, a ‘house’ could refer to almost any building, ‘home’ means where and how someone decides to live. And it’s this feeling of personal space which first springs to mind when considering home design. Products need to fit seamlessly into people’s lives and need to address their needs, be that by providing a service, solving a problem or expressing an aesthetic.

What should a designer consider when given a task to solve a problem within the home?

First things first, think about the individual who is facing this problem and the difference a solution could make to them. Then, break down the problem into bite sixed chunks. From here, you can start to focus on boxing off individual elements one-by-one, all while keeping the end user, and their passions, interests, capabilities, and budget, in mind. As a business we focus on providing solutions for every sleeper; we understand that everyone’s approach to sleep and slumber needs are unique, so developing products that properly address specific problems is key to our design process.

In recent years how have designers changed their approach to designing for the home?

I think the biggest shake-up has been the introduction of smart technology into the home – and the proliferation of tech throughout our homes has inevitably changed how products are designed and used.

The other major change has been consumer awareness of and interest in products that are genuinely ecologically sound. Silentnight is proud to have an award-winning sustainability program because considering the impact of any product on the planet is key to great 21st century design. We’ve also seen consumers seek increased adaptability in their homes and a greater interest in using bold colour and patterns.

Reflecting on our experiences of spending more time than ever in the places we call home, do you have any predictions on how design will be used as a tool to harness these new connections?

During lockdown our homes have become everything from office spaces to classrooms – and it seems extremely likely that this multifunctional approach is here to stay. I think design will need to be increasingly flexible and that balancing aesthetics and practicality will be more important than ever, as Brits look to make optimum use of their space.

What makes a successful design to you and what qualities does your brand looks for in a designer/design?

For 75 years we’ve handcrafted all our mattresses, upholstered bases and headboards from our Lancashire base. But, while we respect the time-honoured lessons of traditional bed making, we also embrace the latest sleep science to offer homeowners what other bed companies do not – choice, and a tailored sleep solution that makes their bedtime better.

Our designers need to reflect this balance and our tailored approach in their work and to be passionate about developing solutions-focused products for the nation’s homes. We’re proud to be the UK’s most trusted bed brand, and in order to maintain this position, our design needs to be consistent and reliable in its performance, which are two more attributes we look for in a designer.

Angela Moran, Product Strategy Director, Silentnight


on the effects these changes which have formed within society. We have been fascinated  have been considering what impact this has had on designers who harness nature has their biggest influence. 

We caught up with jewellery designer and Class of ND19 alumni, Florence to find some answers to our questions. The  

In 2019 she founded her company, Object Cor ltd, inspired by nature and motivated by tactility. In 2020, Florence intrigued our selection panel and was chosen to be a OYI exhibitor as they were fascinated with this designer’s passion to capture the mundane interactions of the everyday and create a collection which is influenced by the sensory inputs which arise from spending time within nature. 

within the nostalgic elements of the outside world, creating a collection which holds the joys and brings a mindful presence to designing with the tactility of nature in mind.