If You Think You’re Seeing Decor Melt, You’re Not Wrong
One of the funkier design trends this year.
Updated Sep 29, 2021 7:13 AM
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The first time I came across an iteration of this trend, I was significantly weirded out. Scrolling through the pages of an online retailer that shall remain unnamed, I came across a droopy, glass figurine, whose bulbous silhouette was draped across a pedestal. The overall effect was both disarming and completely captivating—though I didn’t think much of it until a few weeks later when reading about Swedish studio Färg & Blanche’s exhibit at Stockholm Design Week.
Set in a gilded 19th-century former factory whose old-worldly elegance perfectly juxtaposed the funky contents of the exhibit, it featured sleek red tables and plush sofas. It also featured floor lamps with protuberant bulbs and candlesticks that appeared to be gliding off tables. After more examination of home accessories on the market, it became clear: Melt-effect decor is officially trending.
Of its eye-catching designs, Färg & Blanche told Dezeen that it has a simple philosophy: “We like to see our furniture as alive, as people; we build up stories around them.”
Maybe, then, the sudden popularity of this trend is emblematic of a shift in how we interact with design. Gone are the days of utilitarian decor that merely acts as a backdrop to daily life. Modern design is all about realism, movement, and a hint of irreverence—all centered on the belief that if it’s a personal, creative expression, it should be more than just a prop. It should also be fun.
With both literal takes on “melted” decor, like drip-effect pieces, and more figuratively, like Talbot & Yoon’s Insta-famous Goober candles, which look like they were melted down and reformed into pastel-hued blobs, there are tons of ways to get in on this playful fad. Ahead are some of our favorite amorphous finds to prove that, while decor may be melting, the remnants of it are chicer than ever.
The Sculptural Lamp
If your bedroom is short on space and you have to pick between a decorative object and a functional light fixture for your nightstand, don’t. This Lindsey Adelman creation is definitely a splurge piece, but it expertly blends form and function in one sleek, contemporary item.
The Easiest Way to Zhush Your Bodega Flowers
When the vase itself is a beautifully crafted piece, it takes the pressure off the florals to do all the heavy lifting. The slightly wonky silhouette and the cool drip pattern will make this asymmetrical vase just as much of a focal point as any bouquet of blooms. Keep it on your mantel or coffee table with a simple floral arrangement as an easy statement-maker.
The Servingware Star
Designed by Joe Sayegh to highlight the juxtaposition of glass and wood, this carafe will undoubtedly be the hero of any bar cart. It’s almost as if the carafe has melted around the teak wood base, creating a one of a kind–looking item.
The Surrealist Staple
Channel Dali’s instantly recognizable work with a playful accent piece for your floating shelf. It mimics the artist’s famous work in The Persistence of Memory, and while it may look like a merely ornamental object, it’s actually a fully functioning clock. Put it above your desk as a unique take on desk decor. Your regular office essentials could never.
The Desktop Octopus
Speaking of office essentials, do away with boring staples and swap your desk lamp for one of Entler’s octopus-like futuristic fixtures. The matte charcoal hue is elegant, making for an interesting blend of sophistication and whimsy.
The Minimalist Melting Pot
A more literal take on the melting decor trend, this column-styled white vase features a simple drip design against an equally simple white earthenware backdrop. Used as a tall pot for some of your greenery or as a vase for your favorite florals—dried flowers would add a rustic touch to balance out the more modern style—it’ll become a household favorite.
The Candle You Won’t Want to Burn
One of the original purveyors of the trend, Talbot and Yoon’s Goober Candle is a fun addition to any surface. The amorphous blob is so cute that you won’t want to burn it at all, keeping it instead as a bookshelf accent to add a bit of playfulness to your space.
The Morning Companion
While a chic new mug may not make getting up early on weekdays something you look forward to, it may make the experience a little less dull. Modeled after traditional Japanese Yunomi tea mugs, this melt-effect vessel works equally well for tea and espresso. Plus, it’ll make a gorgeous addition to your kitchen’s open shelving, particularly if you pick up a couple of the mugs in different colors.
The Pot That’ll Convince You to Toss the Terra-Cotta
This is the cool, colorful pot that standard terra-cotta pots want to be when they grow up. Concrete Cat’s now-renowned concrete planters are the most stylish way to upgrade your windowsill. The organic shape and near tie-dye effect of this pot make it as much an objet d’art as a functional home for your plants.
The Futuristic Light Fixture
Any design aficionado is likely familiar with Tom Dixon’s “Melt” lighting series, but while the bulbous pendants get most of the glory, the table lamp iteration of the design is equally stylish and easier to incorporate into any space. Opt for the copper colorway and enjoy your new futuristic-looking light fixture as the finishing touch to your living room’s side table.