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imm cologne 2018 (c) far.design; Koelnmesse
16.01.2018

IMM COLOGNE 2018: MEGATRENDS AND THE WAY WE LIVE

Megatrends are becoming increasingly visible in the way we live.
Be it globalisation, urbanisation, digitalisation, individualisation or neo-ecology: German and international manufacturers are keeping pace with the times and are offering more and more options in their range of furniture and fittings. Customer needs can no longer be deduced from socio-demographic characteristics and target groups alone - people's lifestyles are too different for that these days. The megatrends influence the directions in which the additional options develop: They drive things forward and point out new directions at the same time.

The megatrend of individualisation has intensified in the furniture sector on at least two levels: The catalogues are bursting with diverse options and the internet is the first port of call to get an idea of what's on offer. Several portals offer tailored advice or allow you to furnish your own home in a virtual reality setting.

Megatrends are becoming increasingly visible in the way we live.
Be it globalisation, urbanisation, digitalisation, individualisation or neo-ecology: German and international manufacturers are keeping pace with the times and are offering more and more options in their range of furniture and fittings. Customer needs can no longer be deduced from socio-demographic characteristics and target groups alone - people's lifestyles are too different for that these days. The megatrends influence the directions in which the additional options develop: They drive things forward and point out new directions at the same time.

The megatrend of individualisation has intensified in the furniture sector on at least two levels: The catalogues are bursting with diverse options and the internet is the first port of call to get an idea of what's on offer. Several portals offer tailored advice or allow you to furnish your own home in a virtual reality setting.

The megatrend of digitalisation has also impacted on the way we live in two very clear ways. When it comes to the products themselves, the "smart home" is becoming increasingly important. Many household appliances, doors and windows, white goods and heating control systems now come with applications that improve comfort and convenience in everyday life. The second element has far-reaching effects on our mood. The honest ones among us will admit their overexposure to various media. Within a minute of waking, most people have their smartphone in hand as they start their day. The sensory overload immediately begins, if not with a smartphone then with the television or radio triggering constant distraction and a desire for a multitude of things. We lose ourselves in the face of so many options (the weather, the stock market, breaking news, emails, recipes, music). When the back of your mind wakes up too - and with that a torrent of terms such as digital transformation, chatbots, bitcoins, blockchain, dash buttons begins to flow - you suddenly feel an urgent need to get a grip on reality. Old favourites are making a come-back. Vinyl records, classic cars and filter coffee are all enjoying a boom. In home furnishing, models from the "good old days" are hugely popular: the vintage look, retro, boho-chic, mid-century design. In our fast-paced age, it comes as no surprise that many people in the developed world have fallen in love with this style of furnishing. In the virtual world, we are looking for something real, or at least something purportedly real … and Pantone declares ultra violet the Colour of the Year 2018. It is an old acquaintance: clerical power, feminism, extravagance, drama, creativity, "the last attempt", mystical and spiritual, both future-oriented and traditional, but a counterculture most certainly. Denmark has given the world the "Hygge" phenomenon, a countervailing measure that brings cosiness back into our homes.

Two-thirds of Germans want their home to exude cosiness. Most people find that easier to achieve with an organic design language, authentic materials and warm colours than with cool, angular and minimalist furniture designs. Colourful combinations of furniture, wall colours, wallpaper, decorations and accessories are also popular because they help express the desired feeling of individuality.
 
Good lighting is becoming ever more important for the overall atmosphere in the home. LED lighting technology is now cost-effective, and can be found in the glass display case, behind the shelf or under the bed, making an important contribution to the home's cosy lighting ambience. The lighting industry's latest highlight is improved LED light batteries with long run-times. These flexible, portable and cable-free light sources are very handy for small apartments. This kind of small lamp can be used as a functional light in the kitchen, as a reading lamp at the table and as indirect illumination when chatting in the evening. In former times, candles were carried around the home, today we carry cutting-edge LED battery lamps. Talking about candles, the consumption of real candles has been growing steadily over the last five years. According to the European Candle Association (eca), each EU citizen consumed an average of 1.45 kg of candles (+6.2%) in 2016, with further growth expected. Opulent, Baroque-like candlesticks are in fashion, and help to create cosy living spaces. Candlelight is highly prized. Indeed, we could speak in terms of a digitalisation by candlelight. There is a close link between living style and the longed-for attitude to life. In times like these, it is not surprising that more and more people divide their world in two. On the one hand, they have a "private shire", as Stephan Grünewald from the Rheingold Institute calls it, in which they feel snug and safe. Then they have an external "grey country", an often frightening world of terror, globalisation, food scandals, Brexit and capricious political leaders. The private sphere is often designed as an idyllic retreat to make it easier to filter out the external world. This idyll is the counter-world to the hard and digital reality. It's all about nest-building, comfort, security and cosiness - a means of escaping the often-overwhelming anonymity of the external world.
 
Before the backdrop of globalisation, the home becomes the central location of identity. Furnishing their homes in a personal way gives people a sense of belonging. Identity is a matter of self-creation, not only in terms of the personality but also of the private environment. We form our identity on a day-to-day basis through the way we live. Many people perceive the world as an excess, and they see their own home as an identity-forming protected zone. The home is guarded, fashioned and loved. Security technology and creativity are spreading and the home is becoming the only enclave of informality. Following the maxim "The world is too much for me, I'm enough for myself", the home is a retreat, a refuge and an idyllic world.
 
In the modern age, populations tend to move from rural areas to the cities. For the first time in history, more than half the world's population now live in urban conglomerations. Major cities face two challenges that have long been identified: The constant need to find more living space, and managing the growing volume of traffic. When it comes to the way we live, the megatrend of urbanisation becomes more concrete in a number of respects. There is already a growing longing for ruralisation among city dwellers, while - paradoxically - new digital innovations are making possible new ways of working and living, far away from the smoke and smog of the city. It is already possible to work without a fixed base in a number of occupations. In future, the toilet lid in the smart home will regularly test the urine for signs of disease, taking care of prevention and making medical care plannable. Villages could experience a renaissance when drones deliver shopping, and electric driverless cars take children to school.

In the season ahead we will see the introduction of more organic forms, especially in the seating furniture sector. Organic design takes its cue from organic nature. Dynamic curves and powerful cambers come to the fore as striking characteristics. Organic design is soft and is therefore distinct from geometric and functional shapes. A wide range of natural fibres is on offer as upholstery fabrics for padded furniture, with corduroy and velvet playing a prominent role.   

The blue colour spectrum - from European blue and light blue to turquoise and petrol - remains popular. Blue represents harmony, imparts a sense of reliability, and has a pleasant calming effect. Olive green is the new trend colour, representing naturalness, spring, hope, health, youth, nature and vegetation. However, olive is not gaudy; the grey aspect in it makes it a quiet and inconspicuous choice.

Linoleum is making a come-back. The material was invented in 1860 and consists mainly of linseed oil, ground cork dust and jute fabric. It was originally intended for use as an elastic floor covering and it is still used in that way to this day. The furniture industry utilises linoleum as a tabletop surface, sideboard front and bureau inlay. It is a robust, green material that stands for healthy living.

Solid wood is about to strengthen its position further. The designs for tables, cupboards and sideboards are delicate and elegant, having moved away from the rustic look of the past. Oak remains the top seller, but walnut and cherry wood are maintaining their position. Wood combined with other natural materials such as glass and metal is also a popular choice for the visible parts of cabinets.

The visual quality of furniture in all price categories is generally improving. In future, furniture that looks cheap in whatever way will not sell well. With the smart home, the bathroom show and the lighting show - in addition to all the other furniture and fittings exhibited at imm cologne 2018 - we will experience an explosion of innovation and inspiration. By passionately opening oneself up to something, that thing is freed from the vortex of the ordinary and everyday. That is just as true for good food as it is for good furniture at imm cologne. Only those who dare to do so can discover the new.

More information:
imm cologne Megatrend
Source:

Ursula Geismann, Press Officer and Trend Analyst, German Furniture Industry Association, VDM

Heimtextil: 2975 companies present design innovations © Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH / jochen günther
09.01.2018

Heimtextil: 2975 companies present design innovations

  • As of today, textile interior design is the focus of international attention at Heimtextil in Frankfurt am Main.
  • From 9 to 12 January 2018, representatives from industry, commerce, design, architecture and the hotel industry will gather at the world's leading trade fair for home and contract textiles.

‘With 2,975 exhibitors from 64 countries (2017: 2,949)*, Heimtextil is on a growth course for the eighth consecutive year and is continuing its remarkable success story in a challenging market. Over the next few days, we will be experiencing a globally unique design show with a variety of product innovations and textile inspirations by international market leaders’, says Detlef Braun, CEO of Messe Frankfurt. A high-calibre event programme with well-known guests and renowned industry experts will highlight themes relating to furnishing trends and design, architecture and the hotel industry.

  • As of today, textile interior design is the focus of international attention at Heimtextil in Frankfurt am Main.
  • From 9 to 12 January 2018, representatives from industry, commerce, design, architecture and the hotel industry will gather at the world's leading trade fair for home and contract textiles.

‘With 2,975 exhibitors from 64 countries (2017: 2,949)*, Heimtextil is on a growth course for the eighth consecutive year and is continuing its remarkable success story in a challenging market. Over the next few days, we will be experiencing a globally unique design show with a variety of product innovations and textile inspirations by international market leaders’, says Detlef Braun, CEO of Messe Frankfurt. A high-calibre event programme with well-known guests and renowned industry experts will highlight themes relating to furnishing trends and design, architecture and the hotel industry.

Martin Auerbach, Managing Director of the Association of the German Home Textiles Manufacturers, is pleased about the continuation of the trend towards more materiality in private and public spaces. ‘Home textile products are again significantly more visible than they were a few years ago. This confirms the signals we have observed over the past one to two years,’ says Auerbach happily. ‘The diversity of home textiles products, designs and colours makes the international trade fair platform for home textiles a trailblazing annual event to start the year. Although the economy over the past year is likely to remain below expectations – not all of the figures from German industry are available yet – the overall mood in the sector is good’.

VIP guests: Barbara Schöneberger presents wallpaper collection   

In hall 3.0, DecoTeam is celebrating its 30th birthday and inspiring with a varied programme, exciting trend showcases and renowned guests such as TV presenter Enie van de Meiklokjes and star chef Alexander Hermann. Highlights in hall 3.1 include presentations by international textile manufacturers such as Alhambra / Tormes Design from Spain, Damaceno & Antunes / Evo Interior Fabrics from Portugal, Fryett's Fabrics from the UK, Kobe from Germany and Wind from Belgium. Visitors can also look forward to the world's largest wallpaper presentation with international market leaders and celebrity guests. Star entertainer Barbara Schöneberger presents her first collection for the wallpaper factory Gebr. Rasch.

VDT targets wallpapering world record

In cooperation with Heimtextil, the Association of the German Wallpaper Industry (VDT) is aiming for a world record in continuous wallpapering on a 100-metre-long action area. In hall 5.1 (east side), the area will be wallpapered both day and night from 8 to 12 January. Through this, the audience will experience how wallpaper can create atmosphere and noticeably enhances rooms. Trade visitors, journalists and manufacturers are invited to join in with celebrity guests such as interior designer and RTL presenter Resi Colter.

Upholstery: new presentation area in hall 4.2

The upholstery section in hall 4 will see renewed growth in the number of exhibitors thanks to the participation of well-known manufacturers such as Beaulieu Fabrics from Belgium, Konrad Hornschuch from Germany, Luilor and Vigano from Italy and Dina Vanelli from Turkey. Due to the great demand, presentation possibilities for high-quality upholstery and decorative fabrics have been created for the first time in hall 4.2. Trevira is also present here with a promising highlight. For the first time in several years, the company will take part in a big community presentation with its CS partners. These include Engelbert E. Stieger and Getzner Textil from Austria, Jenny Fabrics and Swisstulle from Switzerland, Pugi from Italy and Spandauer Velours from Germany.

Bed, bath & table: Wide range of ready-made products

The home textiles sector also impresses with its strong range. In halls 8 to 11, around 1,500 suppliers will be presenting ready-made products in the bed, bath and table segments. The bedding offer stands out here as the world's largest range of such products.

Hall 8.0, which is completely booked out, has become the central contact point for the bedding industry. Numerous market-leading companies such as Irisette, Billerbeck and Frankenstolz will be present. Mascioni from Italy and Dún or Fior from Iceland are new to the fair. In Rössle & Wanner, Heimtextil also welcomes a renowned supplier of premium mattresses and a market leader in the field of manually and motor-driven adjustable slatted frames. Rössle & Wanner will exhibit its Röwa brand products in Galleria 1.    

Home collections by international fashion labels such as Joop Living, Marc O' Polo and Esprit can be seen in hall 11.0. In addition, premium providers will also be presenting their new products in a lifestyle-oriented environment. The companies will present their contemporary and modern as well as classic and elegant approaches in hall 11.1. Among those represented with collections of the highest quality are Schlossberg from Switzerland, Collection Stiegler and Curt Bauer from Germany, Kas International from Australia, Martinelli Ginetto from Italy, Sorema from Portugal and Welspun from the UK.

Heimtextil will also be introducing a new product group:

the “All about pets” section presents selected suppliers of textiles and accessories for animals. In Galleria 0, beds for dogs and cats, pillows, cosy blankets and much more are on offer. Darling Little Place and Studio am Meer from Germany, Lex & Max from the Netherlands and Volentis from Switzerland will be among the exhibitors.

“Interior. Architecture. Hospitality”: contract furnishing as a top theme

A central role in the trade fair’s programme is played by the range of contract furnishings and fittings, which Heimtextil sums up under the title “Interior.Architecture.Hospitality”. With the Interior.Architecture.Hospitality Expo, Heimtextil is launching a new event format in hall 4.2. The following renowned suppliers will be presenting their textile products and material solutions in an exclusive setting: Drapilux-Schmitzwerke, Low & Bonar, Gerriets and Maasberg from Germany, Forster Rohner from Switzerland, Chieftain Fabris from Ireland as well as The Cotting Group (Griffine) and Senfa from France. They are aimed specifically at architects, interior decorators, interior designers, project planners and hoteliers. The Expo's offer encompasses both aesthetic and functional answers to questions regarding modern, sustainable design, as well as fire protection regulations and structural requirements. A four-day lecture programme, guided tours of the exhibitors and a special catalogue of exhibitors (the “Contract Guide”) also provide in-depth information on the subject of contract furnishings.

Carpet show reveals benefits of textile floor coverings

Whether in hotels, restaurants, theatres, on trains or in private residences – with textile flooring, rooms can be designed to be comfortable, warm underfoot and individual. The numerous advantages of textile floor coverings will be showcased in a tangible way at Heimtextil 2018. With its presentation in hall 4.2 “Carpet by Heimtex”, the German Association of Home Textile Manufacturers is targeting architects and contract decision-makers in an architectural environment in particular. Employees of the Heimtex member companies such as Findeisen, German Rugs, Object Carpet, TOUCAN-T, Vorwerk and Weseler Teppich will offer advice on acoustics, modularity and design in relation to textile floor coverings.

Heimtextil “Theme Park”: the furnishing trends of the future

The programme highlight for those interested in design is the “Theme Park” in hall 6.0. In this trend and inspiration area, visitors and exhibitors alike can look forward to a wealth of material innovations, colour trends and new designs. The overarching theme is “The Future is urban”. An accompanying programme of talks and guided tours will give far-reaching insights into new design projects. For the 2018/19 season, a team of seven international design studios have isolated the most important themes from various general trends. The London-based studio Franklin Till was in charge of the design of the “Theme Park” in hall 6.0.

02.01.2018

Thailand's textile industry on new paths

  • Good chances for synthetic fibers and functional textiles

Bangkok (GTAI) - Thailand's textile industry is in transition and is increasingly positioning itself in new markets with higher added value. Synthetic fibers became an important foothold on the basis of innovative raw materials, while functional textiles are grateful to customers in a dozen sectors. In addition, there is the traditional silk craft, which can be marketed by international design and attractive fashion shows - and this at top prices.

  • Good chances for synthetic fibers and functional textiles

Bangkok (GTAI) - Thailand's textile industry is in transition and is increasingly positioning itself in new markets with higher added value. Synthetic fibers became an important foothold on the basis of innovative raw materials, while functional textiles are grateful to customers in a dozen sectors. In addition, there is the traditional silk craft, which can be marketed by international design and attractive fashion shows - and this at top prices.

The Thai textile industry is changing. As a part of the long-term national development strategy “Thailand 4.0” , new technologies are designed to help innovative products breakthrough in key emerging markets, backed by concerted efforts in design, fashion and marketing. The industrial foundation ensures the availability of a complete value chain from fiber production, yarn spinning, fabric weaving and processing to the production of clothing.
The long-term strategy has been outlined by the Thailand Textile Institute (THTI) in its "Thailand Textile and Fashion Industries Development Strategy 2015-2030". Three phases are planned from the regional center for textile and fashion retail, to the development of creative products for international brands, and finally the breakthrough as the global market leader in fashion design, including Thai components. The concrete catalog of measures includes an industrial fashion zone, a pilot fiber plant, a development center for yarn, fabrics and fashion products as well as a regional fashion academy.

Broad spectrum for innovations
A diversified petrochemical industry with high-quality downstream products provides a rich foundation for a wide variety of synthetic fibers. The main products are polyester, nylon, rayon and acrylic polymers. The range of applications is quite broad, including apparel, medical technique, hygiene and automotive manufacturing. For polyester, Thailand ranks ninth in the world with an annual production of 621,000 tons, the larger producers include Indorama Polyester, Teijin Polyester or Thai Toray.

Increased research and development efforts with both artificial and natural textile fibers are paving the way for functional textiles. There are a dozen applications in this broad future market: Agrotex, Mobiltex, Medtex, Hometex, Oekotex, Packtex, Buildtex, Clothtex, Indutex, Geotex, Protex and Sportex. The leaders in this branch are companies such as Asahi Kasei, Perma, Saha Seiren, PJ Garment or TP Corporation. Thailand also wants to play an active role in shaping the future market of "smart fabrics" - such as fabrics with UV protection or antibacterial and fire-resistant properties.

Renaissance of the silk
On elegant paths also the traditional over generations grown art of silk crafts is moving. Thanks to the rich raw material base, the kingdom is considered to be the world's fourth largest silk producer. In the preference of visitors from abroad, silk products are at the eighth place in the souvenir statistics 2015 with USD 149 mio.
The origins of silk were characterized by the craftsmanship weaving with regional origin characteristics such as at the Lumphun Broocade Thai Silk, the Phu Thai Praewa Silk or the Surin Hole Silk. The change to innovative products took place with the growing demands of customers. New technologies produced goods of higher value, which were also became promoted with new stronger marketing ideas.

Jim Thompson and Passaya are considered two major pioneers of world-class luxury silk brands. Jim Thompson generates USD 72 mio thanks to modern design and premium products. Passaya won international awards for outstanding innovations in design as well as in the production process. Public support has been provided by promotional events such as "Proud Pastra", which recently completed USD 1.5 mio  in trade surplus. The Ministry of Commerce also intends to establish a silk center in the northeastern Korat under the state-sponsored so-called OTOP scheme (One Tambon One Product).

The entire industry has currently  4,700 textile and garment manufacturers with over 500,000 workers, including 730 textile companies for technical textiles. The export value amounted to USD 6.45 billion in 2016, which represented about 3 percent of total exports. The national retail sector recorded steady growth rates averaging 3.5 percent per year over the period 2011-2016.

In addition to production, Thailand also tries to profile itself as a fashion hub for regional and international fashion shows. The most important events are the "Bangkok International Couture Fashion Week", "Elle Bangkok Fashion Week" and the "Bangkok International Fashion Fair". The first national designer brands have already made their debuts on the catwalk, such as Sretsis, Naraya, Dry Clean Only or Disaya. Sretsis, founded by three sisters, became successfully supported by some big names such as Beyoncé, Paris Hilton, January Jones and Zooey Deschanel.

More information:
Thailand
Source:

Waldemar Duscha, www.gtai.de