Digital Design Trends To Watch
Overviewing next year’s design trends is a must. We have decided to pick 5 design trends you can expect in 2017 and briefly describe them and tell when it is necessary to use or avoid some. Our tips are more like recommendations than dogmatic rules. You are free to try what suits your taste and what do you like the most. So, let’s get started!
1. Modern Retro (Again)
Yep, this trend firmly holds its position. Well, as they say, everything old is new again. Modern retro is a fun and memorable style. Designers use design patterns from the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s to give a project some sense of nostalgia and provide an emotional connection between the design and the user.
- Geometric, simple shapes
- Rich colour palettes with plenty of golden yellows, oranges and reds
- Pixel-based illustrations (like in early video games (Hello, Mario!)
- Simple animations that don’t move too fast
- Plenty of custom typefaces, including bubble-style lettering, blocky slab serifs and typefaces that mimic popular video game, movie or television titles
Make sure that your audience will get it. For businesses in finance, healthcare, logistic or similar industries modern retro may not work.
Moving graphics catch visitors’ attention and keeps them on your website for a little bit longer period of time. Plus, you can try using both video and animations.
Cinemagraphs are quite heavy and when the Internet connection is poor they can reduce the loading speed. If your users are more likely to use smartphones try not to overuse cinemagraphs.
Minimalism is one of the most beloved trends in digital design in the past few years. The basic rule of minimalism is the well-known Less Is More rule. If you can get rid of something without losses ‒ get rid of it. Functionality comes out on top and achieving simplicity becomes the main designer’s goal.
- Focuses on the content, especially visuals
- Emphasises only what’s important, avoids excessive decorations
- Colour pallets are limited, preferably concentrated on a few colours or even shades of one colour. Note: it doesn’t mean you can use only white, grey and black 🙂
- Minimalist fonts are crisp, clear and straightforward. Decorated fonts are rarely used
- Widely uses high-quality photos and videos
Works everywhere, for every business.
4. Illustrated (Hand Drawn) Images
This design trend was on the top in 2016 and looks like it will keep its’ position in 2017 as well. Images that look like they were drawn a minute ago on a piece of paper create friendly and simple atmosphere.
- Avoids perfectly straight lines and shapes
- Details are kindly welcomed
- Colour pallets, in general, are unlimited
- Say ‘hello’ to the rich variety of hand-drawn fonts
- Widely uses high-quality photos and videos
Works perfectly for creative agencies, studios creating hand-made stuff and etc. For some industries which we are used to taking as serious (like finance, banking, transport and others) hand-drawn details can be used in ads or on the website.
5. Modular Layouts
Modular design pattern was widely used in newspapers and magazines. Using a block grid pattern helps to organise the content (especially if it’s not 100% related, news, for example). If you are an owner of a content-heavy website modular design can be a rescue option for you.
- Straight lines and clean geometric shapes are required
- Often images come in the first place. HD stock photos are widely used
- Written content usually takes less space than images
Make sure you will have enough written content and rich, high-quality images and illustrations to use before choosing this style.
6. Bold Photography and Sleek Text
This idea is good for starting page and landing page designs (btw, you can find some cool designs in our list of favourites). Since this kind of images are very detailed and grab all users attention you must be careful and do not overload the space left.
- It is all about the details
- Colour pallets are unlimited
- The surrounding space usually is clean (negative)
- Collages are often used as accents
Mostly we can see bright colorful collages used in beauty and textile industries, tourism etc. You must be familiar with them from motivational posters.
‘Trends come and go, but the style is eternal’, said Yves Saint Laurent. And he had a point there. But there is always some place for an experiment. If you want to refresh your website and amuse your audience, go for it and use one of the 2017 design trends on your website, ads and etc.
Special ‘thanks’ to Andrew P., UI/UX Designer at Synergy Way, for consulting and providing professional feedback on this article.