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February 18, 2020

Top 5 design trends for 2019 - and our predictions for 2020

In this blog post, we list 5 design trends that have been prominent in 2019, and which design trends we believe you should keep an eye on in the coming year. 

Cassandra Stridh
Written ByCassandra Stridh

2019 marks the end before a new decade. Throughout the year, we’ve generally seen a more playful and experimental design than before, and it seems like all aspects of design have been affected. We’ve seen a more open composition within web design than what we’re used to, far off strict grids and guides. The open composition in combination with other trends has made us wonder what else there is to explore, now that we’re moving away from a more traditional and flat design. 


We have listed the 5 trends that have been the most prominent in the year of web design and also listed our predictions of the design trends we expect to see more of in 2020. 


1. 3D Design 

“Bringing your life to work in 3D allows you to recreate the world around you and to construct new environments and dimensions.” - Adobe 


3D design is initially a definition of what living design is. The design literally comes out of the screen with its multiple dimensions. For years, 3D design has been a stable trend within typography especially, but now it is also blooming in graphic design and product marketing. This is something that fits many different styles but also something that provides huge possibilities of experimenting for the designer. As expected, we have not been disappointed in what we’ve seen. 


Design by David Glissmann 


Design by Muokkaa Studio


2. Asymmetric layout

Asymmetric design is a trend that breaks with all old rules and allows the designer to push the limits and experiment. In 2019 we have been surprised by unexpected patterns and design that separates from the crowd. We have gone from a more predictable and flat design to a more fluid and alive design. It is no longer expected for objects to fall within set frames or grids and they can now be placed anywhere, for the design to feel less stiff and predictable. An asymmetric layout requires more attention from the user, which explains why it receives a greater interest. 


3. Anti-gravity: Flying and floating elements 

Flying and floating elements who defy all rules of gravity are in line with the open composition we’ve generally seen in 2019. In anti-gravity design, elements seem to be floating in and out of the screen. Regular objects now seem extraordinary when they are brought to life. According to Graphicmama anti-gravity design is often seen in combination with 3D design which - through defying previously set rules and limitations - create a feeling of freedom. 


4. Vivid colours and gradients 

Transitions and gradients in vivid colours have been a huge trend in the last years, but in 2019 this trend has grown even stronger and more colourful. Using vivid colours has been a good move to make design stand out - especially when it comes to typography. During the year, the vivid colours and gradients have given a futuristic impression that makes you feel like you’ve been in a different universe. 


Gradients on Graphiq's website 


Design by David Glissmann


5. Illustrations 

Illustrations are a classic trend that’s grown over several years and that does not seem to disappear. We’ve seen them in logos and landing pages and they're an effective tool within many areas. Despite illustrations being a flat design, they stand out through shading and lighting and gives an original touch to your design. In UI design, illustrations are also a very educational tool that simplifies a message for the user. 


Design by Daniel Tan 

Our predictions for 2020

1. 3D design and realism 

Yes, you heard me. 3D design is continuously topping the design trend lists even in 2020. Technical development opens up for even bigger opportunities within 3D design, which is causing it to keep trending. In 2020 we expect to see much more 3D design in combination with real elements such as photography and 2D. 


2. Animations

Animation is one of the most effective ways to convey information. According to Brady Mason, lead designer in Tattoodo, 2020 is going to be filled with purposeful and powerful animations, which has become a standard when it comes to design. 


“Static design is not getting the attention of users anymore. If you really want to create a memorable experience, the users must feel like the design is speaking to and interacting with them.” - Brady Mason 



3. Big and bold typography 

In 2020 we also expect to see a more daring and simplistic design within typography. This involves using bolder typeface, less text and a design language that is more direct. In other words, more focus on readability and less room for visual interaction. 


Design by Creative Doc


Some other trends we expect to see within design in 2020 is minimalism and metallic materials. We also expect a more adjusted design that fulfill needs, such as voice-assisted UI and even design adjusted for AR/VR experiences. As we can see, some trends follow us into 2020, but there are also many new and exciting trends to explore. 

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