2019 Architecture & Design: The Newest Trends on the Block

A trend is more than something that will simply be forgotten. Trends are building blocks for progress.  They give direction and work to represent a generation. Many people confuse trends with fads, thinking that they are one and the same.  However, trends have a lasting impact, whereas fads are often dead and gone before everyone can even participate in the initial craze.  

At VanmanAB, we meld together our own unique design elements with that of the latest trends on the block, resulting in a one of a kind brand that reshapes and redefines the way we look at architecture and design. 

So now let’s hop into the 5 architecture and design trends of 2019 that we are looking forward to:

Blending in.  

Who knew that the way to stand out in 2019 was by blending in? Following the commonly sung mantra of “less is more”, mirrored surfaces and reflective materials have gradually made their way into the mainstream as of late. When we think of a building, we often picture a structure that contrasts both the form and essence of its natural surroundings. In short, we can tell what is manmade and what is not. However, by blurring the lines between indoors and outdoors, manmade and natural begin to blend together, resulting in an aesthetic that not only reshapes our perspective on architecture and design but also leaves a lasting impression on all of those who are looking closely.


Staying put in one location for a considerable amount of time means that every corner of your space should be utilized to its fullest potential.  With that, flexible furnishings and installations that serve multiple purposes are starting to find more use in modern spaces.  Some common examples of this today include walls that act as whiteboards, chairs that act as tables, moveable room dividers, etc. The possibilities are endless.


With the growing need to preserve our environment, many have opted for sustainable building models. From solar panels, passive design elements, to organic building materials, new methods of conservation have been finding their way into the living and working spaces all around us. For more information on sustainable architecture and design, check out one of our recent blogs titled, Building a Sustainable Church.

Brick is back. 

It’s about time brick has become the “talk” once again. Being one of the oldest building materials to date, it’s finally nice to see it being implemented in a fresh, modern sense. Having so many feasible and aesthetically pleasing applications, brick will certainly be utilized in all sorts of building projects this year. Keep an eye out for inspiration on your next project.


Making your space your own in this day and age is paramount when it comes to gaining and retaining new customers. Integrating your own unique persona into the very walls that house your environment helps give your atmosphere an approachable and human aesthetic. The truth of the matter is that people crave authenticity. Let your building show it. 

Building a Sustainable Church

God shaped the world so that natural systems render no waste. One organism’s waste is another organism’s food – this is the mystery that we, humans, have yet to crack – a simple yet beautiful order to all things that has allowed us to thrive as a species before time was even a thought.

Though through time we have slowly moved away from this sustainable model of life. That doesn’t mean it is too late to turn things around. In fact, it is our duty now, more than ever, to preserve the divine order of all things that God willingly put in our hands. 

Sustainable Churches? Absolutely. 

What better way to foster the preservation of God’s creations than by building a sustainable place of worship? Here are a couple of ideas to spark something great (and more importantly green) when planning your next project:

Setting matters.

Designing for place is very important when thinking about building a church (or any structure for that matter). Not only does it take environmental, societal, and economic aspects into account, but it also helps free up common roadblocks such as lack of access to local building materials, lack of community engagement, and lack of local economic enrichment.  Choosing the right setting for your project can go a long way toward helping the environment as local materials and labor supports the surrounding economy while mitigating the need for excess resources to be exhausted. 

Mimicking Nature.

This process, also known as biomimicry, can minimize costs and boost efficiency. For example, just as butterflies utilize nano-sized scales to repel dirt and stay clean, building exteriors can be coated with a protective layer that reduces the need for maintenance and extra spending.  Another common example of biomimicry is solar panel technology that converts solar energy into usable energy – the same way that plants utilize photosynthesis to covert the power of the sun into chemical energy. Not only is this type of energy clean and green, but it is also cost-efficient in the long run. 

Passive Design.

By reducing or removing the need for simulated climatic systems such as air conditioning, heating, lighting, etc., this type of design model is the textbook example of sustainability.  Examples of this include harnessing prevailing winds in a way that cools the interior of a structure, integrating natural desiccants to remove humidity, building acoustically efficient spaces to reduce/remove the need for speakers and other electronics, and incorporating vegetative roofing to deflect heat in the summer and retain warm air in the winter.  All of these design elements can work to reduce overall costs and minimize your Church’s carbon footprint.

Take a Stand.

Buildings have been telling God’s stories for thousands of years.  Now, it is our job to preserve the world that God gave to us by incorporating the organic processes that we were created from into the things that we create with our own hands.  By building a church in accordance to the diverse, natural systems that show the balance between life, death, and growth, congregants are more likely to take these practices home with them and realize how invaluable they are to the future of our planet.