The Eco-trend is ramping up in every category. The industry trade shows covered in the August issue of The Trend Curve all included significant advances for all things green. Subscribers to The Trend Curve should already have that issue in their hands (to subscribe, visit www.trendcurve.com and click on the Trend Store link, or contact Janice Carlson by email or phone — 800.531.6614).
In some cases, individual companies carried the green banner. In others, the event also put focus on doing right by the environment by creating a special pavilion to highlight some of the best green products. Here is a run-down by show. I covered Showtime myself; our capable Editorial Correspondents weighed in from the events.
For Atlanta Rugs: Arthur Douglas Thayer
For Chelsea Flower Show: Jane Stockel
For Las Vegas Market: Ann Wimmer
For NeoCon: Cori Dunn
From Circa 1801’s certified pure organic cotton to American Silk’s Sensuede, made of 100% post-consumer/post-industrial polyester fibers (translated: recycled pop bottles) to Portfolio’s 100% jute introduction and Valdese Weavers’ Valor line, where you choose how to make it green (today’s Reprieve recycled yarn, organic fibers or renewable ones like hemp and bamboo that are in the works), Eco-Chic was in full swing for upholstery textiles. There are now so many options for doing better by the environment that it won’t be long (perhaps less than five years) before the majority of fabric debuts arrive ready to do their part.
While no official survey is available, it seems as if more companies than not had a green offering at NeoCon. In fact, a number of high-end green offerings debuted. Kravet introduced its first eco-friendly fabric collection (pictured). Benjamin Moore showed off its new super premium Aura acrylic wall paint that exceeds EPA standards, dries in an hour and is practically odorless.
In the eco-friendly fabric market, recycled poly fabrics are virtually the norm; now the bar has been raised to “post-consumer” recycled polyester. That formulation was new at Interface and DesignTex.
At Safavieh, hemp, aloe and jute mixed in a coarse texture message that also supported an Eco-Chic trend. The focus on ecologically friendly assortments was ramping up all over the rug market in ways that suggest serious, long-term participation. For example, Shaw Industries debuted a recycling program to reprocess polyester into new. Other makers depended their commitment to centuries-old methods of vegetable dyeing, hand weaving and hand finishing.
Las Vegas Market
Wood is still the best choice for making an eco-statement for home. At the Las Vegas Market, found and petrified types began to take shape in a new way. Specifically, orbs with naturally occurring knots and large holes stepped up as decorative accessories that have no real use except to beautify and remind us of nature.
As a beautiful and refreshing option to found wood, the most forward look was driftwood. This Gray-stained wood, assisted by man to reflect the ravages of time, sun, sea water, wind, offers both a physical and visual texture. The pulp is scrubbed away, leaving the highest points of the grain to tell the story. Best when applied to clean, non-complex furniture and accent pieces. Some of the best examples were at Blue Fish Home (see image at left) and Moe’s Collection.
Chelsea Flower Show
The Chelsea event in London, England emphasized that global climate change is as close as our own backyards. This was accomplished practically with an abundance of less water-dependent, less-hungry plants and flowers (water conservation continued as a huge theme). It was also alluded to in tall grasses that caught the wind and represented wispy clouds. At the same time, recycling was well represented by large plastic soda bottles slit lengthwise and used as hanging planters, as well as retooled-metal sculptures of ducks, bugs, birds and lizards. California winery Fetzer showed a garden featuring sustainability using wildflowers and green power with a windmill, while solar panels, better looking than ever, were shown for lighting and pumping water from stored sources.