What is Memphis Design and How to Bring it into Your Home in 2019

memphis design

The home decor world seems to be working in full throwback-mode right now. What was once thought to be tacky is now tastefully used in the home and looking dated doesn’t matter as much. From re-emerging treatments like terrazzo to the re-introduction of wicker, we’re seeing that what’s old is new again! The boldest of which is Memphis Design. This bright aesthetic had its colourful impact in the 80s and 90s but we’re here to show you how to bring it into your home in 2019.


What is Memphis Design?memphis design

Memphis Design was originally founded in December 1980, when Ettore Sottsass (design icon and architect) brought together a group of friends to form the movement. The main premise behind Memphis Design was a break from the postmodernism rule; these creatives wanted to escape the regulated aestheticism they had been taught and adopt a more conceptual approach to design.

Basically, as a break from strict guidelines, Sottsass and his group created something completely new. Think Art Deco meets Pop Art with 1950’s kitsch! This bold and brash design, full of tenacity and primary colours, isn’t for the faint-hearted. However, Memphis Design is on the horizon, and we can see it creeping back into interiors. Many leading designers are using the movement’s bright colours, kitsch suburban motifs, and cheap materials (like plastic laminates) throughout collections this year; and so can you.  

How To Use Memphis Design

With Memphis Design being such a noticeable style, it does take some serious thought when adding it into your modern home. Unless you decide to fully embrace this style, we suggest you try bringing Memphis Design into your home slowly without overwhelming the décor.  


memphis design

Bringing plants into your home is always a great idea. Not only do they provide lots of healthy benefits, they also work wonders with almost any aesthetic. Using Memphis-style planters is a great way to introduce the playful patterns and vibrant colours without taking over the space. As a plus, they look great with everyone’s favourite easy-care plants: succulents!


Throwsmemphis design

As is the case with many styles, our best recommendation for introducing this design is through throw pillows and blankets. This allows you to test out the aesthetic before making any big commitments. However, be aware that these accessories may not work well against earthy tones like taupe or sable. You’ll find that stark-coloured furniture will really allow these pieces to pop!  


memphis design

Wallpaper is also making a huge comeback in interior design, allowing homeowners to make big statements. Of course, nothing would make a bigger statement than an accent wall filled with squiggly lines and strong angles; or maybe even a whole room! This is a bigger commitment for sure but wallpaper isn’t permanent so you can try it out for a while before making a final decision.


memphis design

Furniture can be a big commitment when it comes to interior design. These are often the big pieces in the room that people notice and interact with. Of course, you can fully embrace the design style and go for some bold, bright pieces to really wow your guests. However, if you want to make a big statement without having to sit on a blocky pink, blue, and green couch, there are some options. We recommend looking for the definitive squiggles and shapes of the Memphis-design while remaining neutral. You can use muted colours and still have the usual exuberant feel from the pattern while toning it down to pair with different design motifs.

These are a few ways you can bring Memphis Design into your modern home before making any big purchases. That being said, break the rules and be inspired by using a little Memphis in your interiors! You’ll never know if you like it until you try. For more interior design tips and tricks be sure to follow Mosaik Homes’ blog series!