While decorative and aesthetic trends have often dominated, 2024 appears to usher in a shift towards prioritizing sustainability, heritage preservation, reuse of materials, and the incorporation of natural elements. There is a growing emphasis on creating spaces with unique and bold personalities, reflecting individuality while also respecting the environment and cultural heritage.


It appears that materials such as hempcrete, bale construction, stonework, and thatching are increasingly being considered for mainstream projects as the world seeks ways to minimise the climate impact of construction. Thatching, in particular, stands out as a sustainable resource. It is cost-effective, environmentally friendly, simple to cultivate, and requires minimal equipment for harvesting. Additional elements include the trend towards living off the power grid, utilizing locally sourced materials, and harmonizing with the natural flora of the area.

West Coast Villa –

West Coast Villa



One prevailing trend centres around the “as found” concept, utilizing building materials in their natural state and respecting the heritage aspect surrounding the project. Architects enthusiastically adopt this approach to honour the exposed, unrefined, and historical materials within a structure. With many buildings or houses facing demolition, their rich histories risk being lost. True individuality for a house often lies in its historical narrative. This concept also shines a light on cities or regions undergoing economic hardship. Neglected areas may be overlooked, but it’s inspiring to witness the transformation when such locales are rediscovered. For instance, in South Africa, there’s a revival of interest in houses constructed in the early to mid-20th century.




It’s imperative to collaborate harmoniously with the landscape rather than oppose it. At JNA, we’ve undertaken numerous projects where the landscape serves as the primary inspiration. It’s about integrating the natural surroundings seamlessly into the architecture of the new home. There’s been a notable rise in enhancing outdoor spaces with neighbour-friendly fencing, splash pools, cold plunges, and native gardens. Homeowners are increasingly prioritizing the preservation of existing landscapes rather than altering them irreversibly. For example, this shift is evident in the use of more permeable materials like pavers instead of concrete for driveways. House Klipspringer and Constantia Home stand out as exemplary projects embodying this trend. These properties feature green roofing, compact pools, rock pools, and the incorporation of locally sourced natural materials.

Klipspringer –




Not all homes are suited for mid-century features like a white picket fence or concrete slats, and modern fencing options have gained significant appeal among homeowners. Creative fencing presents an excellent opportunity to enhance curb appeal and complement landscaping efforts. It’s crucial that the perimeter of a home harmonizes with the overall architecture, ensuring a cohesive and visually pleasing exterior design, such as this traditional Karoo style home with its limewashed Leiklip ‘kraal’ fence.

Tankwa Farmhouse –




    In particular, following the pandemic, there has been a notable shift towards wellness-at-home solutions. This trend encompasses dedicated spaces within the home itself or separate outdoor structures tailored for wellness activities. It continues to gain momentum, evident in the popularity of outdoor shower areas, gym spaces, spas, saunas, meditation rooms, cold plunges, and compact pools.

    Constantia Home –

      Constantia Home


      When considering renovating, building a new home, or expanding, it’s crucial to keep these trends in mind: prioritizing sustainability to minimize your environmental impact; embrace the ‘as found’ concept by repurposing existing materials and features; consult with experts to integrate the natural landscape into your design; think creatively about fencing options beyond outdated choices; and dedicate spaces within your home or property to promote wellness and healthy living.

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