"The Good Trend Guide 2000" was researched and designed by top UK interior designers Tabitha Wade and Verity Spencer.
Fashion and interiors still are inextricably linked and many of the trends picked up in The Guide have already appeared on Europe's runways. However, other influences also weave into each story board as Wade explained: "There has been a real trend toward just picking up from fashion for the trends in interiors, but we have taken our inspiration in other directions, too."
Wade predicts that each of the four trends will push through at different times between now and summer 2001. As she said: "Some of these trends are going to take another six months before they filter through. Retailers who can interpret the trend information intelligently to suit their own retail environments will benefit most from it."
Wade believes the pastels from Pure Coast will come through next spring, while the bright colors from Dynamic Earth will fit winter 2000 (with plum and aubergine) and summer 2001.
"It's all about taking the trend information and instinctively putting it into what's relevant to the season," Wade explained. "All sorts of factors affect when and how consumers buy products for the home—politics, travel, time of year and the weather to name just a few. Retailers have to be flexible enough to adjust and adapt."
However Wade says The Good Trend Guide proved a great springboard for buyers. "It's was just amazing how buyers found it so useful," she said. "It helped buyers identify exhibitor product in a very focused way and gave them invaluable ideas for trend-setting displays within their shop windows and stores."
Scandinavian style meets Cape Cod summarizes the mood of the Pure Coast trend. Featuring subtle pastels and pure white, the overriding tone of Pure Coast was serenity, understated, diluted and peaceful. Key textures for the trend include cotton, stone, cobbles, wool and linen.
Explaining the rationale behind Pure Coast, Wade said, "This trend is all about organic living—people gravitating toward more purist and organic influences. People want interiors that are more relaxing, calm and serene."
A white tablecloth scattered with pastel and clear glass beads provided the setting for a white, silver and subtle gray tabletop complemented by frosted, clear and pale blue stemmed glassware. The centerpiece of the table was a tall silver sprayed twig arrangement, aglow with white Christmas lights.
The ethnic look has moved on into a more sophisticated Far Eastern trend with strong tribal overtones. The whole look is a lot more sophisticated as Wade explained, "The in-your-face cow prints, which came through at the Spring Fair, are being replaced with a lot more sophisticated and symmetrical designs such as tiger prints, while the tribal trend is pushing through strongly with the giraffe prints."
Meanwhile, the Asian trend has become more colonial, moving away from feng shui with its black, white and red, to softer more colorful coppers and jades. This could clearly be seen in the Dynamic Earth dining area with Oriental black dinner plates, softened with warm yellow bowls, rich burnt orange chair covers and deep burgundy tassels. The plums and aubergines that Wade predicts will be big for the winter were echoed in plum glassware, while rush mats and large bundles of twigs added to the ethnic feel of the setting.
Heavy Metals is a trend that is inextricably linked with fashion. Combining all the glitz and glamour of James Bond, with the precious fashion fabrics that are pushing through the moment. As Wade explained, "The metallic trend is carrying through the millennium but has moved on from silver to more sophisticated metallics.
"The new fabrics coming onto the market are glistening and fluid with a soft and subtle feel."
Eye-stopping gold chair covers and a delicate meshed gold table cover set the scene for Heavy Metals. Large decorative gold balls and chunky gold candlesticks were the key table accessories to set off the place settings featuring white tableware edged with muted golds. Matt silver eggcups were filled with gold glitter, with silver and gold cutlery and serviettes wrapped in bronze metallic. The glassware combined clear glass with rich golds.
Retro Renaissance takes a look at the past in a broad brushstroke as Wade explained, "Rather than picking out a specific decade in history—such as the '70s—I believe it has become a trend to pick up on a number of different years from the past. Retro Renaissance is about everything from the '30s right through to the '80s and it doesn't matter what element you take, or which decade, because Retro Renaissance reflects all of them."
Once again, this season's fashion runways have already shown this shift. Retro is no longer about looking back at a specific moment in time, instead it's the '30s and '40s cashmere and tweed as well as the faded '50s look, the glitz and glamour of the '70s and even a revival of 1980's punk rock.
As a result, Retro Renaissance is a real melting pot of the decades New Wave and Kitsch, Revival and Rebel Style all being worked together with bold colors such as turquoise, red and orange and equally bold patterns including dots, swirls and graphic blocks.
For the Retro Renaissance setting, a white tablecloth was contrasted by tartan table mats while contemporary blue-handled cutlery sat alongside glassware with striking silver bands running down each stem. Funky table accessories included a feather trimmed lamp, as well as a large glass bowl filled with white polystyrene balls and gray and black grit. In complete contrast, romantic bowls of fresh red roses completed this eclectic table.
Autumn Fair Birmingham and Housewares International are organized by Trade Promotion Services (TPS). The 2001 edition is scheduled for September 2 to 5, 2001. For more information visit www.autumnfair.com, www.springfair.com or www.intohome.co.uk, or call (201) 659-0134.