Article from the 2017-01-19, by Christian Czok
Every year in mid-January, the imm cologne opens the trade fair season for interior design. Throughout Cologne, the theme of "living and furnishing" is presented - museums, colleges, galleries and other cultural institutions display furniture and designs from all over the world. In many respects, the Cologne fair is a hommage to the Milan furniture fair 2016. Many pieces of furniture that could only be presented as prototypes back then were introduced as finished pieces by their designers at imm cologne. Many designs - such as the All Plastic Chair from Vitra - have been developed further and are now in stock!
The imm also allows many of the German Design Award prize-winners the opportunity to show their products. The award, which is presented at the Ambiente fair in Frankfurt, is a measure of revolutionary ideas and groundbreaking designs. For more information about the award and past winners, click here.
Our colleagues Markus Abraham and Laura Krajewski were at the imm cologne for you and report on interior design trends for the upcoming year.
Hallway furniture, storage solutions, chests of drawers and mirrors are probably the most represented product group this year. The entrance area, which for many people has not received much attention in previous years, is now becoming more of a focus. It's no wonder, what with all the things that we need every day life, that we want to have stored away but also easily accessible.
String is one of this year's German Design Award winners, having won for their Works Shelving System. With individual elements, the brand has expanded its shelving solution so that it can easily be transformed into a functional wardrobe.
Other solutions for the hallway were presented by Skagerak with the Georg Desk - one of the winners of the German Design Award - and Roomsafari with a particularly creative wardrobe idea that is suitable for a narrow corridor or a small reception area. More practical furniture and high-quality mirrors for the hallway have been developed by designer Sebastian Herkner in collaboration with Schönbuch.
The new requirements for design are above all: it has to be practical, it has to be able to be used in different ways, and it must be tailor-made to personal expectations. Many manufacturers and their furniture take account of this desire for multifunctional utility. The user can determine how to use the piece of furniture.
Such "customized solutions" are found, for example, at emform. The side tables of the manufacturer can be arranged upright and horizontally, thus revealing different possibilities of use in addition to a different look. The German company was founded in 1979 and is known for intelligent and interactive designs such as the Huk multifunctional furniture.
In addition to the hall, the appearance and role of the living room is also changing. This is reflected in one way through the many colourful elements used in the furniture, and in another way through the materials that determine the feel of the room. Green, yellow and lots of plush fabric make the living space shine with colour. The gigantic sofas of recent years are softening into smaller couches and loungers, making the living room so much more than just a place to linger with guests, but rather a personal oasis.
In terms of colour, rich green and yellow tones dominate the furniture fair - especially Greenery, the Pantone colour of the year. But also covering watermelon, through golden-yellow to sand: these tones set atmospheric accents in the living area. While grey and black have found their way into our apartments and houses over the last few years, it is trend to make contrasts with carefully chosen colour elements. In general, it can be said that the colourful is more present than in recent years and it's ok to show a bit of courage in this area.
Velours (in the orginal French, or velvet in English) has officially become a textile trend. This fabric, with its incomparably soft feel, is reminiscent of fairy tales and takes you into an exotic world of comfort that invites you to dream and to fall into it. Homes have to be comfortable and create a counterbalance to the stressful and hectic everyday life - velvet is a clear trend for sofas, couches and armchairs. Velvet creates comfort through its touch and aesthetics. From the first moment, one loses oneself in the soft depth of velvet furniture.
Many furniture pieces and manufacturers orientate themselves to the style of the 50s, which has long since found its way back into the home. Retro is a trend like never before. Red Edition and Carl Hansen & Søn show how to create a symbiosis of old & new through clever combinations.
The mid-century style furniture presented at the imm cologne 2017 looks graceful and majestic. The designer David Hodkinson and the label Red Edition devote a whole collection to the fancy of the 1950s. In this way, they meet precisely the zeitgeist of the Cologne furniture fair. The Fifties collection is produced in Saigon, the home of the designer, where he accompanies the entire development process.
If the larger furniture for the living area seems too dominant, Carl Hansen & Søn have the solution. The design label has been manufacturing retro chairs for years, and they are icons of Scandinavian design. At the trade fair, the manufacturer introduced its world-renowned Wishbone Chairs and presented many other design pieces that radiate the glamor of the past in a modern look. The Wishbone chair features soft organic lines and is now available to buy online at Connox.
The designs from the far north are still very popular and have stood for timeless elegance for decades. Natural materials, clear lines and pleasantly quiet colours define the furniture of the north and thus provide for a special comfort. Wood is the central element. Because of this it is no surprise that several Scandinavian brands presented their products and designs at the imm cologne. The furniture presents a particularly high functionality, which is why it is seen as practical and easy. Another characteristic of Scandinavian design is the ongoing urge to be innovative and develop modern living solutions. This joy in experimentation is significant for the success of the Nordic design style and is part of the living culture of the North.
The fact that Scandinavian culture is part of today's lifestyle can also be seen in the total number of 90 exhibitors from Denmark, Finland, Sweden and Norway. Skagerak and Design House Stockholm are not to be missed: the designs and furniture of the two manufacturers symbolize the Scandinavian lifestyle and feeling of living with a striking, clear line and quiet practicality.
After the fair, our Buying team will of course be very busy. The range of products in the Connox online shop will be considerably enlarged in the coming weeks and complemented by a few pieces from the Cologne Furniture Fair. Look out for many new products from our brands!
Article from the 2017-01-19, by Christian Czok