What is Kindercore and is it Right For You?

Something new is about to hit our homes, and it’s like nothing we’ve seen before. Get ready to say hello to Kindercore, the all-singing, all-dancing design trend that’s primed to take the world by storm. After decades of being told blank spaces, sleek lines, and white walls are the height of chic, suddenly, minimalism is out and maximalism is in…. and for many, it’s not before time. Whereas minimalistic styles are all about creating relaxing, tranquil, and let’s face, slightly boring spaces, Kindercore brings the fun, injecting a great big shot of vibrancy, creativity, and personality right into the heart of the home. With its carefree, childlike sense of fun, Kindercore is for anyone who’s tired of prescriptive design trends and sterile environments, and who’s ready to go all-in with color blocking, bright shades, and bold geometric designs.

Where Did It Start?

It may be the new kid on the block, but nothing comes from nowhere, and rarely does such a big change, whether in home design or anything else, come about without some kind of background. So, what’s the where, why, and how of Kindercore? As interior designer Sarah Barnard tells The Spruce, “Kindercore style seems perhaps a response to the stressors of our time and our collective desire to move in a compassionate, inclusive direction.” Which is all very well and good, but where exactly did it come from? Nothing can claim to be truly unique, and even a very novel design trend has to be inspired by something, somewhere, or someone.

In Kindercore’s case, the influences of the Bauhaus, De Stijl, and Memphis Movements are strong, even if, as Haute Living notes, it’s taken those inspirations and reworked them into a very different, very 21st-century style. But why Kindercore, and why now? In a conversation with The Strategist Jill Singer, the co-founder of Sight Unseen, attributes our warm embrace of the movement to a sudden interest in maximalism and a deep-seated desire for some of the fun and vibrancy that primary colors impart. Echoing Sarah Barnard’s thoughts, she adds, “All of that combined with the fact that the news is depressing. So why not a rainbow?”

Check out those Curves: Say Hello to Chubby Furniture

If you’ve never heard of chubby furniture before, don’t worry… you’re not alone. Visualize, if you will, the complete opposite of the type of furniture you’d see in a very grown-up, very minimalistic interior. As The Spruce notes, chubby furniture takes the clean lines, sharp edges and simple designs we’re used to, and replaces them with voluptuous curves, thick bodies, and the kind of aesthetic that wouldn’t look out of place in a kid’s bedroom.

Laid back, comfortable and just the right side of childish, chubby furniture is the antipathy of everything classical and haughty-chic, representing a great big breath of fresh air for our interiors. If you’d rather a bolder, more confident style of furniture than the ones you’re probably imaging at the moment- you’re in luck. While comfort is still king, lately, the style has been welcoming some slightly more assertive additions. “We don’t tend to examine trends too much, but what we’ve personally been interested in recently are blockier, more graphic shapes. There have been a lot of soft, amorphous, almost cuddly shapes dominating design and interiors for the last couple of years. We love these, but are really enjoying working on heavier, more brutalist pieces at the moment—it’s still comfortable, but has a more assertive presence,” Emma Jay of Los Angeles–based design studio Estudio Persona tells Clever.

Bringing the Happy with Primary Colors

As Smooth Decorator reports, one of the most fundamental aspects of Kindercore is color. Big, bright, primary colors are key. Think fire engine reds, Crayola bright blues, and greens as bright and lively as a salad bowl. Not that anyone’s forcing you to paint your house a rainbow: how far you take the trend is really up to you, with most people feeling more comfortable with a neutral backdrop accented with plenty of vibrant flourishes.

Making a Statement with Key Pieces

Kindercore might be the polar opposite of minimalism in many ways, but it’s not an excuse to fill your home with unnecessary items and lots of clutter. A few stylish statement pieces combined with Kindercore’s happy-go-lucky color palette should be enough to do the look justice. A low back armchair in a Hungry Caterpillar shade of green, a curvaceous coffee table in a pillar-box red… don’t underestimate the power of just a few pieces that have plenty to say for themselves.

A New Kind of Simplicity

While Kindercore has about as much in common with minimalism as chalk has with cheese, it does share the same love for simplicity. Integral to Kindercore is a childlike (although not childish) happy-go-lucky spirit: anything over-ornate and elaborate is out, and everything with a simple, easy style is in.

Incorporating Kindercore Into Your Home

If you’re ready for something a little bit fun, something a little bit silly, and something very, very now, it’s time to embrace Kindercore for all its worth. That said, if you’ve spent the past few decades living with floor to ceiling minimalism, it’s probably best to start small before revamping your entire house with primary colors. Kindercore may be as cheerful and happy as it’s possible to get, but it can take a bit of getting used to, all the same. Start by introducing a few, small splashes of color. Maybe you could throw a few primary-colored cushions on the sofa, add a few bright towels to the bathroom, or inject some youthful vigor into the bedroom with a super-comfortable, super curvy low backed seat in a gorgeously bright hue. Kindercore brings the fun to the party, and it likes to do it in unexpected ways. Give your creative side free rein to try out the new style, whether it’s through Crayola colors, strong, geometric patterns, or curvaceous furniture. Remember, whatever you do… have fun.


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