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Paperworld Trends 2018/19: three styles that focus on modern workplaces and office lifestyles

Sep 19, 2017

‘Minimal + Excellent’, ‘Spirit + Ambition’ and ‘Work + Challenge’ provide ideas for product development and selection of goods

Trade visitors can get a specific, practical idea of the various trends, with information about both exhibitors and products, through guided tours and specialist lectures. It is a unique service that provides the retail trade with the latest ideas and suggestions for putting together their selections and for dressing their shops

Michael Reichhold, Director of Paperworld

Paperworld combines, under the one roof, the two major areas of product demand: on the one hand, commercial office requisites (The visionary office) and, on the other, private requirements for paper, stationery and school requisites (The stationery trends). In so doing, it will represent the world’s largest range of stationery and office supplies and provide major stimulus for the retail trade from 27 to 30 January 2017.

The combination of ‘The visionary office’ and ‘The stationery trends’ is also reflected in the overall Paperworld Trends and in the Trend Show in the Foyer of Halls 5.1 / 6.1.

The Paperworld Trends for 2018/19 showcase innovative solutions for the office of tomorrow and include some ground-breaking lifestyle trends for school, for gifts, packaging and celebrating. The Paperworld Trend Show is the sector’s major platform for the exchange of information. It brings together the exhibitors’ innovations in the Trend Worlds and presents them in punchy, expressive displays. “Trade visitors can get a specific, practical idea of the various trends, with information about both exhibitors and products, through guided tours and specialist lectures. It is a unique service that provides the retail trade with the latest ideas and suggestions for putting together their selections and for dressing their shops,” says Michael Reichhold, Director of Paperworld.

Stilbüro bora.herke.palmisano was commissioned by Paperworld to examine the question of how people will be going about their work in the future and what products will be on trend for the up-coming season. To do this, they draw upon developments in fashion and architecture, as well as in product and furniture design, and transpose these to the stationery and office supplies sector. For ‘The visionary office’, the designers have identified a trend they have called ‘Work + Challenge’. ‘The stationery trends’ are exemplified in two stylistic scenarios: ‘Minimal + Excellent’ and ‘Spirit + Ambition’. 

‘Work + Challenge’ interprets the workplace as a comfortably relaxed holistic concept

When it comes to the ‘Work + Challenge’ trend, the clue is in the name. The main idea to be demonstrated here is how high-tech, changing expectations of cooperative working and comfort combine in the overall concept.

Paperworld Trend 2018/19: Work + Challenge
Heldu, Design by Iratzoki & Lizaso for Alki, Illustration by Cem Bora / Workman long by e+m Holzprodukte / Commune, Design by Joel Karlsson for Mitab / Mono business by JuliFoli / Team privat, Design by Peter van de Water for Cascando / Heldu, Design by Iratzoki & Lizaso for Alki, Photo: Mito

The trend appeals with its modern look and changes the office into a harmonious working environment, using the product range for commercial office requisites. In this changing workaday world, furniture and products must meet growing demands in terms of both aesthetics and user-friendliness.

The focus is very much on a natural, easy atmosphere in a tailor-made concept, combined with the highest demands in terms of flexibility and mobility. The balance between communicative and private spaces is achieved with multifunctional elements and furniture, supported by various specific functional requirements. At the same time, light, invigorating colours and natural materials have an important role to play, as they enhance the sense of well-being in the workplace.

‘Spirit + Ambition’ brings dynamic aspects into the modern home office

Lively and sporty, the ‘Spirit + Ambition’ trend supports the search for new inspiration. In this stylistic scenario, digital meets analogue. This style is inspired by both the latest workwear and streetwear, as well as by young artists and technological innovations.

Paperworld Trend 2018/19: Spirit + Ambition
Palmblad by Sarah Corynen / Horizon notebook by Hay / Noomoon strap by Layer / Typography by bhp / Passenger backpack by Nava / Pin racket by Redfries

Workspaces in the home are transformed with line drawings, an inventive use of lettering and strong colours into a creative, artistic home office, which creates space for more individuality. The contrasting colours and diverse materials bring with them a revolt against a purely goal-driven rationality in the working environment.

There is some experimentation with digital and analogue routes that embody an artistic and emotional expressivity.

‘Minimal + Excellent’ reduces the office to an exclusive clean-lined elegance

‘Minimal + Excellent’ presents a reductionist, modern elegance: it is a trend that is marked by high expectations of the functionality and quality of the products used, with a focus, too, on design and workmanship.

Paperworld Trend 2018/19: Minimal + Excellent
Illustration by Cem Bora / EL-8 open back headphone by Audeze / Cartoonist desk, Design by Nedo for Yusei Matsui; Photo: Akihiro Yoshida / Kaweco special fountain pen black, anodized aluminium by Kaweco / Sartorial document case slim by Montblanc / Hand engraved card + envelopes by Pineider

The colours chosen fit in with this classic trend, which oozes quality: dark shades, including black, dark blue and moss green, combined with gold, nickel and silver are centre-stage here and create the sense of an exclusive space in the home office. This impression is enhanced still further by the architectural clarity of the shapes and furnishings, as well as by the use of the latest technologies.

All products are subject to the notion of achieving elegance through a reductionist approach.

“Flexible working hours and mobile work spaces are increasingly blurring the lines between work and free time. But that does not mean that the office has lost its purpose as a place for people to meet and a place where they can concentrate – a lot of the many new concepts approach the new demands in imaginative and creative ways. At the same time, the value placed on materials, workmanship and artistic expression is also increasing. The trends for 2018/19 pick up on these forward-looking tendencies and throw light on the latest new products for the ‘visionary office’ and the ‘stationery trends’,” explains Claudia Herke, one of the designers of Stilbüro bora.herke.palmisano.

Guided tours of the Trend Show provide stimulating ideas for retailers and manufacturers alike

The Trend Show is located in the link area between Halls 5.1 and 6.1. The trend worlds that have been identified by trend consultants, bora.herke.palmisano, will be introduced in lectures and guided tours, conducted in German and English by Claudia Herke from Saturday till Monday, at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. every day. On the Tuesday, the last day of the trade fair, the tour will take place at 11 a.m. only. During the guided tour, each trend will be illustrated with specific practical examples. The products mentioned in the presentation will be identified on a list, including the name of each manufacturer involved. This free take-away service is very popular with retailers, who very often start their visit to Paperworld by stopping off at the Trend Show, so as to get some idea of key things to order.

Those, who wish to know more, will find further information at:

The Trend Folders will be available, free of charge, at the Trend Show information desk. These high-quality print copies give the exact colour values together with examples of the materials and patterns used for each trend. Specialist retailers can also get tickets for the Trend Show prize draw at the information desk. The prize, offered by Paperworld, is an individual shop-window display, designed and executed by the Trend Bureau in the winner’s own shop.

Note for journalists

The Trend Collages, which can be downloaded in high-resolution data format, are available at:

Background information on Paperworld

Every year, the leading international trade fair in Frankfurt am Main presents the latest products and trends of the paper, office supplies and stationery industry. Clearly arranged, Paperworld offers the world’s biggest range for the office sector, e.g., commercial office, stationery and drawing products and solutions, and the stationery sector, e.g., paper, school and stationery products for private use, as well as gift articles and wrapping materials. Paperworld is the highlight of the year for the sector and a source of innovative business ideas for the wholesale and retail trades, for book sellers, the internet and mail-order trades and commercial consumers. Additionally, its multi-faceted event and congress programme offers inspiration and expertise not only for retailers but also for architects, planners and facility managers interested in the latest office trends and interior-design concepts.

Further information and photos at

Background information on Messe Frankfurt

Messe Frankfurt is the world’s largest trade fair, congress and event organiser with its own exhibition grounds. With more than 2,300 employees at some 30 locations, the company generates annual sales of around €647 million. Thanks to its far-reaching ties with the relevant sectors and to its international sales network, the Group looks after the business interests of its customers effectively. A comprehensive range of services – both onsite and online – ensures that customers worldwide enjoy consistently high quality and flexibility when planning, organising and running their events. The wide range of services includes renting exhibition grounds, trade fair construction and marketing, personnel and food services. With its headquarters in Frankfurt am Main, the company is owned by the City of Frankfurt (60 percent) and the State of Hesse (40 percent).

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