Textiles a Bright Spot at M&O
Hermine Mariaux -- Home Textiles Today, 10/10/2011 2:00:00 AM
PARIS - While last month's presentations at Maison & Objet seemed a bit more subdued - perhaps in reaction to the European financial malaise - there was still plenty to love, discover and take home in the currency of inspiration.
By far the most compelling and immediately applicable trend was seen in the concept presentation entitled "The Influence of Pro Sports on Design" by Francois Bertrand, one of several the M&O organization sponsors each season to spark visitors' imagination.
His premise was that "our age is one of High Performance - required at every level," not just in sports. On the human level "to look our best, stay young, fit and healthy to be ready for and capable of high performance. His proposition: that such requirements will infect consumer goods including furnishings with an athletic feel, quality and functionality imported variously from soccer, baseball, tennis, mountain biking, horseback riding and other competitive sports.
Proof came the next day with reports from the New York Spring apparel collections where several of the young fashion designers already displayed examples of materials and shapes adapted from pro sports.
What bearing might these developments have on home products? Well, for one thing, they already have with more inevitably to come.
The many new, and often man-made fabrications shown on the runways including lacquered latex, light-as-air nylon, high performance blends and bonded materials might well usher in a new era for manmade materials.
Noteworthy trends continuing into 2012/13 included:
• Color: The brightest spot belonged to home textiles this season. It's where color came to life in bed and bath products, table linens and all manner of textile accessories.
• Berry and spicy Reds were especially strong, and purples remained important.
• Blues continued to move away from long popular turquoise, gaining strength and depth from ultramarine.
• The citrus family, once dominated by acid greens, now prefers clear to golden yellows and orange for punch.
• Greens on the other hand are beginning to show a distinct blue cast as in emerald.
• Prints outnumbered solids by a mile. Large scale florals were predictable crowd pleasers, bringing romance and drama to the bedroom.
• Digitally manipulated geometrics and dots added an edge to contemporary.
• Even "solids" displayed nuanced printing as in ombre effects.
• Asian influences continued to gain ground as did dramatic baroque scroll motifs, the latter carrying over from textiles into home accessories, especially mirrors, even home fragrance packaging.
• Embellishments and embroideries were rarely seen as seemingly everyone all at once swore off ornamentation. Even "glitz" was diminished.
• Crisp sheeting replaced the more fluid and languid charmeuse and sateens favored for so many years.
• An ocean of linen seen in interior settings reached a saturation point as did the neutral color schemes and massive amounts of black virtually universal in almost all room settings. Linen upholstery, however, echoed the "dry" hand and look seen in readymade textiles.
• Worsted wools and flannels followed in the spirit of men's wear fabrications but this time eschewed texture for smooth and patternless surfaces. Only dressmaker details - such as contrast piping used to decorative effect and inserts of contrasting fabrics - added a much needed touch of color and visual interest.
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