The Best Furniture and Lighting Designs of 2022

The Best Furniture and Lighting Designs of 2022

The past 12 months have been a whirlwind. A lot has happened, and many of those global changes have been echoed in the world of furniture and design.

From the jubilant celebrations and long-lost returns to the evolution of our homes into places full of personality, growing focus on our impact on the world and a new way of looking at existing designs, 2022 was full of progression, expression and beauty.

Our interiors greatest hits of 2022 show us how exciting, innovative and surprising the home can be, and how it’s easier to get involved than you’d think.

Milan returns

It had been two long, bizarre years of everything being thrown off kilter. The much-awaited return of the Milanese furniture fair Salone del Mobile signalled that finally the design world was back on course. The creative community cheered and breathed a sigh of relief. Showrooms were dusted off, doors propped open, and stands put back together as the usually annual week of unveilings, launches, immersion and surprises showed us where interiors were heading for the 2022. It was Italy’s most stylish city back to its old self – palazzos, courtyards and galleries dressed head to toe in high design, fizzing with energy and overflowing with celebration for global creativity.


Maxim Argile Dining Table by Cattelan Italia

Held up by softly concave petal-like legs, the Maxim table by Pio and Tito Toso is crafted from moulded liquid cement, finished in earth-toned clay for an organic-meets-innovate finish.


Esosoft Sofa by Cassina

Elegant with an whimsical twist, Antonio Citterio’s Esosoft Sofa is a flexible sofa system made up of eight modules that can come together to form classic sofas, L-shapes, chaise lounges and more, its slim lines forming fluid, flowing forms.


Quaderna Collection by Zanotta

Zanotta celebrated its iconic Quaderna table by the Superstudio group turning the big 5-0 with a trio of new products playing homage to the signature gridded white pattern, a desk, coffee table and rug.

Our homes become storytellers

Gone are the times for hiding things away – 2022 was all about putting those meaningful mementoes and favourite finds on display and allowing the vignettes to tell your story. From long-built collections, treasured memories and travelling trinkets, the objects that represent a home’s inhabitants are now proudly put on display, creating unique narratives and personal stories. Here to help are bevy of newly launched glass-fronted storage pieces just asking you to curate our very own cabinets of curiosities and place them centre stage as pieces of art and history – while carefully protecting them from dust and damage.


Soda Sideboard by Gallotti&Radice

Dedicated to pure transparency, the Audrey Glass Cabinet by Pocci&Dondoli is both blink-and-you’ll-miss-it as well as a bold statement in the room – when filled, adored objects will appear to float on its almost-invisible glass shelves creating a gleaming, dreamlike universe.


Matics Cabinet by Porada

Appearing both solid and light, the Matics Glass Cabinet by G. & O. Buratti is elegant as well as a bold statement in the room – when filled, adored objects are gently illuminiated via an app highlighting the textured backdrop available in a choice of finishes.


Costes Sideboard by Cattelan Italia

Offering a mixture of hidden and on-display storage, the Costes Sideboard by Tosca Design is bookended by curved transparent glass sides which offer an insight into the glass shelves within.

Sustainably gets into gear

It’s happened. Planet-harming materials are starting to be kicked out of the land of interiors world. 2022 saw multiple heritage furniture designs being reissued in their recognisable, classic forms but built with more sustainable materials, while the spotlight shone on earth-friendly production techniques, green energy and the recycling of waste. Fast growing or easily replaceable natural materials came further into the fore and new innovative materials were developed, as the furniture community contributed to the growing global green effort.


Klismos Bench by Knoll

Honouring traditional making methods dedicated to nature’s bounty, the Klismos Bench by Antonio Citterio is crafted from natural, sustainable timbers, its quietly arcing seat hand woven in cotton cord for a slow, tranquil feel.


Almendra by Flos

The graceful form put together without glue so it can easily be unscrewed and taken apart at the end of its life, the Almendra Organic Pendant Light is made from 100% recyclable aluminium and a bio plastic which is a by-product of paper production.


J39 Mogensen Chair by Fredericia

Designed in 1947 given an eco revamp for 2022, the crafted timber frame of the J39 Mogensen Chair by Børge Mogensen now has a seat hand-woven in fast-growing sedge grass.

We looked north

Our love for the simplicity, poetry and craft skill that goes into Scandinavian design deepened this year, as the return of 3daysofdesign, the terribly chic interiors show which annually takes over Copenhagen’ showrooms and spaces, illustrated. Trends? Not this year. Brands looked inward rather than at what everybody else was doing, showing off their carpentry prowess and turning the clock back to editions by renown Nordic designers, classic and contemporary alike.


Basket Sofa by Gubi

Originally a child of the 1960s, Joe Columbo’s Basket Collection is back. Honouring traditional hand weaving techniques, its exaggerated curves push rattan basketry to its limits and meld the artisanal with the industrial, the reissued pieces updated with a strong steel frame and more sustainable design.


OW58 T Dining Chair by Carl Hansen & Son

Debuted in 1958 , the relaunched OW58 T Dining Chair features the Hans J Wegner signatures of smooth lines, tight curves and graceful woodwork, the design commanding many hours of carpentry to achieve its sleek, typographical silhouette.


PK0 A Lounge Chair by Fritz Hansen

The PK0 A stands out in design history. Designed in 1952 by legendary Danish designer Poul Kjærholm during his tenure at Fritz Hansen, the chair is sculptural while being functional, showcasing the designer's immense talent.

Indoor and outdoor continued to merge

If 2022 had one interior design theme, it was the call of the wild. Furniture continued its progression into shapes that felt overtly organic, rounded and imperfect, colours felt camouflaged, ready for all seasons with verdant greens, sea-and-sky blues, rich earthy tones and burned Autumnal hues making their way indoors. Natural materials stepped centre stage, with timber, stone, glass and woven grasses imbuing homes with a sense of grounding calmness. Outdoor furniture became indistinguishable from its indoor counterparts, with gardens, lawns, terraces and decking becoming another space to live daily life in just like any other room – design comes first, and weather-proof practicality is innovative, in-built and invisible.


Marenco Outdoor by Arflex

The star of Arflex’s outdoor additions was the nature-proof version of its 1971-launched Marenco Outdoor Armchair by Mario Marenco, its unmistakeable form updated in all-weather block colour, patterns and pastels.


Claire Armchair by Lema

Like two ocean-smoothed pebbles coming together over time, the Claire Armchair by Norm Architects combines epic, organic upholstered forms with a slick, minimal frame, its earthy, natural palette creating warmth and peacefully connecting us to the elements.


H20 Coffee Table by Bontempi

Its thick textured top hypnotically mirroring the characteristics of rippling water, the H20 Coffee Table by Studio F+B Design is decorated by undulating concentric rings, summoning visions of ponds and pools scooped up and brought indoors – an easy way to bring the restful essence of nature inside.

It was a year of big birthdays

We didn’t bother taking the birthday banners down this year as brand after brand, product after product celebrated momentous anniversaries. Taking the opportunity to rediscover and tell the stories behind their icons, brands went all out, with new collections, refreshes and extensions, expanding colour palettes, materials, and special editions, and Salone del Mobile itself turned 60, growing from the 328 original exhibitors in the 1960s to 2,000 now. Who’s for the birthday bumps?


Arco K Floor Lamp by Flos

A world-renowned classic, Flos’s Arco floor light by Achille & Pier Giacomo Castiglioni came into being 1962, it’s simple, sweeping form and chunky marble base becoming ingrained in modern society. For its 2022 60th birthday, we welcomed the Arco K into the fold, which reimagined the original design’s base as an innovative crystal block which supports the distinctive stainless-steel stem and reflector with radiance, clarity and lightness.


Le Bambole Armchair by B&B Italia

The 1972-designed Le Bambole collection by Mario Bellini has a range of new birthday outfits as it hits the big 5-0, reimagined in an array of cheerful shades and a vivid floral pattern. The cloud-like curves now make up an armchair, sofa and bed, the range also newly made with sustainable materials.


Tizio 50 Task Lamp by Artemide

Designed in 1972, Artemide is celebrated the iconic Tizio lamp’s 50th birthday with a special version in rich, vivid red, a favourite of its designer Richard Sapper. An elegant synthesis of intelligent components, the light relies on a sophisticated counterweight system which enables it to move in four directions.

We embraced non-conformist sofas

2022 was the year sofas broke free of their classic straight-line shape, and they were to be found wiggling, zig zagging and bending through homes around the globe. Sounds like a challenge to relax onto? Oh no – these ground breaking designs had comfort at their heart: it was aesthetic convention that was thrown to the wind.


Etienne Sofa by Porada

Built for pure flexibility, the Etienne Sofa by Emanuela Garbin knows about traditional lines – but it also knows about curves, and every shape in between. Want it snaking through the centre of a space? Of course. Want it straight, L-shaped or at an unexpected angle? It can do that too, its puzzle-like sections slotting together in endless creative configurations.


Sengu Bold Sofa by Cassina

Freshly updated so its inviting curves drop down to the floor, the Sengu Bold Sofa by Patricia Urquiola is designed to inspired conversation, directing sitters towards each other in a relaxed, informal way. Its soft lines can form into classic L-shapes as well as asymmetric angles and almost-rounded arrangements for light hearted, cosy moments spent together.


On the Rocks by edra

It was the year for Francesco Binfare’s On the Rocks Sofa. Like a collection of angular boulders moved together over time, the sofa is almost unrecognisable from a traditional seating piece, its cushions and back remixed into a comfortable-yet-bold aesthetic statement and its laid-back modularity meaning thousands of combinations can be formed.

We found designer storage perfection

As interiors looked more closely at the need of those living within, an often-overlooked storage solution came back into the foreground. Fitted furniture is back in the game, and raring to get involved with beautiful, chic designer pieces that cater precisely for your personal needs with true, timeless style. With choices from premium Italian brands Lema, Molteni&C and Porro, and heritage German company Interlübke, and finishes ranging matt and high gloss lacquers to glass, metals, ceramics and veneers, these are bespoke, one-of-a-kind furniture objects designed to slot into your home elegantly. They’re practical, yes, but they’re also so much more.


Kyn Wardrobe by Lema

An impactful, architectural design by David Lopez Quincoces, the Kyn Wardrobe is sleek and sophisticated, its stylised integrated handles drawing the eye to its classic hinged doors. The made to measure piece can be adapted to include drawers and bespoke storage for trousers, belts and shoes as well as shelves and clothes rails – all LED lit and with exquisite detailing in leather and fabric.


Storage Air Wardrobes by Porro

Designed to be fitted freestanding in the centre of a space, the minimalist Storage Air Wardrobes by Piero Lissoni shows off what it holds inside, its open design allowing access and admiration from all angles. Decorated with a variety of finishes, it can also be completely customised with inserts such as clothes hanger hooks, bag compartments, drawer boxes, mirrors and tie racks as well as back panels or doors, and fit several in a U-shape to form a walk-in wardrobe. ‎


Backstage Wardrobes by B&B Italia

Inspired by contemporary architecture, the Backstage Wardrobe by Antonio Citterio features an innovative patented door mechanism which ensures easy and full access to inside. Finely crafted from a range of luxurious materials with unrivalled attention to detail, it can be customised to suit any storage needs, and finished with internal lighting, and subtle bronzed nickle-plated handles.

We said cheerio to Cararra

Cararra was the go-word for marble in the design sphere – until 2022. We’re now opening our minds to marbles of all colours, patterns and geographies, and discovering daring rocks from alternative marbles to travertine, granite, limestone, onyx and beyond. From vivid, can-that-really-come-from-the-earth colours to expressive, ornate veining and enchanting unexpected finishes, the stone we’re living with today creates wow-factor and a sense of glamour as well as being innately calming and bringing the outside in, reminding us that there's still much hidden treasure to be discovered here on Earth.


Rumors Coffee Tables by Arketipo

The Rumours tables by Mauro Lipparini brought two new vivacious stones to our attention; Flamingo Quartz, an enchanting purple tinted-rose hued rock, and Tangerine Onyx, decorated with lava-like orange streaks. Both add a sense of adventure and exhilaration into the home, each tabletop a slice of the exotic.


ToTo Coffee Tables by Zanotta

Topped with a disc of rich green Alpi marble, the ToTo table by Bertrand Lejoly is joyfully verdant – more like a solidified slice of forest than a slab of rock, the marble’s intricate veining balanced by the surface’s simple shape.


Doric Coffee Table by Gubi

Crafted from characterful limestone or travertine covered in either dramatic patterned veining or subtle natural markings, the Doric Coffee Table by GamFratesi combines curves and strict lines, hardness and the soft and hints at the historic with the contemporary.

We went into dark mode

Home objects and sculpture have been merging for decades, chairs doubling as to-be-admired artworks as well as to actually be sat upon. 2022 saw this pushed to extremes, with furniture and interior design elements fully immersed in the darkest shade of them all, so that what became important – and remained the only truly visible aspect – were their intricate, sculptural silhouettes. The result? A new perspective of looking at new and familiar pieces alike. Was that twist always there? Wow I never really noticed that before…


Pivot Dining Table by Bonaldo

Available in a blackened combo of coal oak and dark glass as well as solid walnut with marble, wood or ceramic tops, the dark version of the Pivot Dining Table by Marconato & Zappa sends the eyes downwards to the design’s dramatic asymmetric leg assemblage, which feels like it’s poised to move into a new configuration.


Romby Chair by Porro

Embodying sand-timer vibes, the all-black version of the Romby chair by GamFratesi highlights the tiny join between the two geometric forms, the base comfortably supporting the sitter on nothing more than a perfectly balanced, barely-there axle.


Terminal 1 Chaise Longue by B&B Italia

The shadowy version of the Terminal 1 Chaise Longue by Jean-Marie Massaud hangs in the air like a line drawn with ink and brush, its lack of light emphasizing the contrast between the seat’s flowing ergonomic form and the linear, structural metal base.

More Articles