Firstly, let us just say, HAPPY NEW YEAR!
Hope you’re all having a good start to your 2017. We’re already very busy here getting everything ready for our Spring launch.
We kicked things off with our yearly visit to Heimtextil in Frankfurt. This is the biggest and (many say) most important international trade fair for home and contract textiles. As it is the first fair of the year for this industry, it is used as a measure for climate and trends for the forthcoming year. The fair is an opportunity for designs and trends, international manufacturers, dealers and designers to showcase their new products and innovations to a vast audience of trade visitors. For us, it is a great way to maintain and build new relationships, sample new products, and get a good feel for what design trends, colours, textures etc. are looking to be popular over the next year.
There was so much lovely stuff to see, our office is going to be overflowing with samples over the next few weeks! We’re hoping to bring out a few collections for Autumn this year, so plenty to choose from..
Grey seemed to still be a very predominant colour, paired with contrasting yellows or different shades of blue, green, and the occasional soft pinks. Texture is still a big trend in itself, with lots of variances in materials and techniques used to create interesting distressed looks. Florals and leaves are always popular designs for curtain fabrics, and geometrics in different styles, both with ethnic and Scandinavian influences, were also still a favoured style across the fair.
As well as browsing through the rows upon rows of exhibitors stands, part of our trip included a visit to the ‘Trends Hall’; where the Heimtextil ‘trend experts’ put together an array of displays showcasing the latest
developments in technology for the industry, trends in retail, hospitality and transport, and, of course, design. The theme this year was ‘Exploration’ and the desire to tap into unknown worlds. This theme was then broken down into four genres: Virtual, Natural, Planetary, and Cultural, each showing a different interpretation of the ‘Exploration’ theme.
The Virtual theme used new digital processes, shimmer effects, films and silks to create new interpretations of transparency inspired by the reflections in water. Extravagant floral patterns, jacquards, embroideries and lace were dominant in this area, along with 3D patterns inspired by structures from cell organisms. The colours were lively and bright, with metallics, aquas, and pinks used in sequin prints and mirrored images, again in an attempt to be reminiscent of water.
The Natural theme wanted to reflect how urban aspects of our lives coincide with nature in ways we’re not always even aware of. The materials used throughout this theme were chosen to encourage the use of touch, with natural fibre effects such as wood-like reliefs or bark structures, geometric elements imitating the plant world, and details from the animal world brought in to add texture. Camouflage patterns from both the animal and plant world were prominent throughout, with the use of intensive green tones and natural colours inspired by tree bark and earth.
The next theme was Planetary, which aimed to interpret the raw materials and minerals that make up the ‘magical brilliance’ of the planets amongst we live. The materials used are all about creating different textures, delicate structures, and various tones. Voluminous materials were deliberately used to mimic the surface of the moon, whereas the colour palette played with both the drastic and subtle changes in light and dark through monochrome hues.
The final theme was Cultural, which explored a new urban multiculturalism which is apparently unfolding, where various cultural influences merge to form a unique multinational in-culture. Essentially, for interior design, this is presented through traditional techniques which are modernised and merged together to create highly modern and luxurious modifications in design. Pigmented colours of blues and reds were mixed with urban shades of browns and greys to create a universal ethnic look.
Generally speaking, we’re not sure how much these themes will really influence the trends we choose to follow over the next year, but it was still an interesting experience, and fun to wander around the displays (which we sadly were not allowed to take any photos of!).
All in all, it was a very successful trip! We will certainly have a lot to choose from when it comes to putting together our Autumn collections.
In other news, your eyes peeled for our TWO new wallpaper collections, Eclipse and Essence, and our latest True Colours book, all coming out in February!