Looking ahead to 2012: Lifestyle

WITH budget travellers the world over already enjoying the benefits of couch surfing and glamping, it seemed inevitable that the two phenomenons would eventually combine. 2012 is set to become the year of garden renting, following the launch of the first website advertising privately owned gardens as micro-camp sites: . {http://www.campinmygarden.com|www.campinmygarden.com|www.campinmygarden.com}

It offers homeowners the chance to advertise their garden as a campsite for untraditional travellers seeking alternative accommodation, be it in the countryside or the city. It is less invasive than couch surfing and can be less expensive than glamping, keeping budget travel personable and affordable. The website promotes many different forms of camping, from budget to luxury, and offers previous renters the opportunity to rate their experience on their personal online profile. With membership numbers soaring, garden renting is fast becoming the burgeoning travel trend for the cost conscious in 2012.

Urinal Entertainment

Until recently, it would have been safe to assume that the phrase “Wii games” would be a reference to some form of simulation sport; perhaps interactive tennis, or even a family game of living room bowling. After the invention of urinal gaming, however, which “Wii/wee” the gamer is referring to may now need some clarification. Captive Media has created the UK’s first urinal gaming system, aimed at entertaining the average man during lonely lavatory visits. The contact-less technology works via sensors connected to a 12” LCD screen, hung slightly above the previously boring bowl. The user can choose from a selection of games, including the virtual ski session “On the Piste”, and “Clever Dicks”, an interactive quiz game. Now toilet breaks in 2012 are set to be revolutionised, with the company already lining up potential clients across the UK. Look out for Creative Media’s invention in lavatories across the country this coming year; they’re bound to be become a bog standard bathroom feature. I’ll get my coat…

Digital Flossing

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After the invention of the electric toothbrush, it seemed unlikely that dental care could be any more hi-tech. The simple art of brushing now seems like an archaic tradition, symbolising simpler times of brushing before bedtime and dreading the dentist. Now, even flossing has gone futuristic. The new Sonicare range from Philips features digital technology that is promising the most effective clean yet. The bristleless Sonicare Airfloss delivers microdroplets of water and air to remove bacteria from the mouth, while the Sonicare Diamond toothbrush comes complete with five different cleaning modes, an LED display and a USB travel charger. Battery-operated brushes will become a thing of the past, as stylishly digital dental care is emerging on the market for 2012.


For film fans worldwide, there is perhaps nothing more exciting than going to the cinema, donning a pair of unattractively coloured disposable glasses and enjoying the latest 3D film. Avatar first confirmed the country’s love of all things extra dimensional, and now 2012 is set to become the year of virtual reality. Though 3D is certainly not a new idea, 3D TV is set to become the new norm for 2012. The technology is becoming so ubiquitous in fact that Calvin Klein has launched its own range of designer 3D glasses for fashion-conscious film fanatics, rendering the charmingly flimsy cinema bought goggles a thing of the past. With technology advancing at such a progressive rate, and Toshiba set to launch the 3D TV that promises a unique glasses-free experience, the 3D phenomenan is set to change forever. Now top brands are offering more affordable home cinema sets, so that households across the country can spend 2012 collectively captivated by 3D TV; dated plastic glasses optional.


Taking a leaf from Coldplay’s book, colour palettes for 2012 are tipped to be all yellow. Believed to be the colour of optimism, energy and harmony, our walls should be wearing this bright shade if they want to remain in vogue this coming year. Leave behind 2011’s warmer hues, because 2012 will be about bright, bold and naturalistic statements. Earthy greens and soft blues are also tipped to be popular, as this is the year that nature tones are set to feature prominently in interior design. Get ahead of the game and immerse yourself in yellow fever early on. A popular choice for next year is Pantone 13-0759, more commonly known as “Solar Power” even more commonly known as… yellow.

Rebecca Monks