Frankfurt’s Heimtextil fabrics fair was an inspirational incubator for hospitality designers.
By Megan Krause
Last week, I ventured across the Atlantic for my first international trade show, in Frankfurt, Germany. The fair, which drew 2,634 exhibitors from 61 countries, offered a peek into worldwide textile trends and inspirational content for hospitality designers. Here are a few of the stimulating sights and sounds I experienced while there.
First up—I was intrigued by the four exhibits that made up the 2012/2013 Montage Heimtextil trends. This exhibit led visitors through a tunnel of brightly colored acrylic panels; an area with iron pillars, black-lacquered hanging plants and a periodic release of ominous smoke amid lustrous dark fabrics; woven and embroidered textiles; and mirrored cubby holes that displayed airy textiles with unexpected details like plastic fringe.
I also had the pleasure of sitting in on a few forward-looking trend lectures, one of which doled out food for thought in the form of art, documentary film—and even a few ahead-of-the-curve hospitality products by designers like Patricia Urquiola and Pepe Heykoop.
Later in the show, a keynote speech by Chicago-based architect Jordan Mozer, who designed Renaissance New York Hotel 57, shed some light on the personal muses of a successful hotel and restaurant designer. During his speech, Mozer flashed a photo of his nephew clad in a sweatshirt and skinny jeans to highlight the similarities between that silhouette and his original hoodie chair. He also went on to detail his efforts to work sustainable materials like recycled copper and solid wood into his projects and hospitality product designs despite the fact that “a very small percentage of clients are willing to pay extra for sustainability.”
Another source of hospitality inspiration came from the Young Contract Creations Awards presented for upholstery applications. The futuristic student projects included a free-form chair inspired by the contours of a rainbow that was executed with embossed, folded fabric, and a color blocked hanging bench that hid a power outlet on each side.
Want more information on the latest textile trends? Keep an eye out for my next blog, which will focus on the best new textile products for hospitality applications.
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