Blog, Press Show Picks

You won’t believe where I bought this !

This week I attended a fascinating panel discussion, on the latest trends and interior developments created by the Sainsburys and Argos design team for Autumn Winter 2019 The event was chaired by Kate Watson Smyth, from ‘Mad about the house’

The teams work together but Argos tends to sell more furniture, the smaller accessories are sold in Sainsbury’s.

There are five key trends this season. They reflect the different ways in which we live today: often renting, flexible living, traveling  so we only live in our homes for part of the week. Sometimes letting out our places as Air B&B and often living in quite small places . Some of us have remote working styles, which may mean we work from home.

Trend 1. Japanese inspired, called Kanso Living. This is for a home that is neat and uncluttered. It has a monochrome base.   

Colour Psychologist Karen Haller was on the panel.

‘Black, white and grey are psychologically known to offer protection, safety and a sense of space whilst at the same time being very calming. This minimal pallet lowers the emotional noise”  

Although there is no colour as such, there are many textures and patterns. Included is a ladder shelf unit that looks good, saves space and you can take it with you when you move.

From the head of design  “We did lots of mark making in the studio and then translated those marks  into different kinds of surface design using a range of scales from quite large on bedding to teeny tiny on ceramics.’

Trend 2 Highland Lodge. I would describe this look as modern country with touches of rustic wilderness, such as pale oak furniture and  country touches including images of flowers and animals such as hares on ceramics and textiles. A favourite in this range is light washed oak furniture, including a beautiful four poster bed that retails at just £400

This collection has muted colours that are excellent to use in the UK where they fit in with the prevailing  blue light rather than warm yellow as found in

Mediterranean countries. These blue based tones help us to reconnect with nature and bring the outside in, they fit in well with the grey story that has been popular over the last 5 years Interiors.

Trend 3 . Apartment Apparel This is a very vibrant and exciting collection, it is the Sainsburys Argos take on the centenary of the Bauhaus . There are some exciting juxtapositions of colours, including a much coveted harsh orange velvet sofa which, by the way, is child friendly.

Table-ware is playful and brave with a pallet of mustard and oak that work with a deep navy that runs throughout the collection. The mid century styling helps make small spaces feel bigger.

The pop of colour in this collection attracts the eye and makes the shopper curious about the pieces.  

  • Karen Heller ‘Strong colour creates emotional energy and the volume is  turned up, we see colour before we notice anything else. To work, these colours need a warm yellow base and also need yellow lighting. This is a party place for extroverts.’

Trend 4.  Palm Luxe

With it’s grey soft pale pallet , this look is quite glamorous. There are lots of metallic although mainly silver. Inspired by beautiful hotel lobbies. It is opulent and nods towards preciousness. It is quite a showy look influenced by  old Hollywood glamour. It is aspirational and has the feel of a cocktail party with soft music playing.

 Another expert on the panel pointed out that this is a look that will stand out in the rental market and also appeals to those who love Show Homes. It happens to be a very instagramable look, that is very easy to shoot.

Trend 5. Loft living   This look includes loads of natural wood.

Sainsbury/Argos sponsor new designers exhibition each year and choose a winner from those presenting their work. This collection was designed by a winner and has taken two years to come to fruition.

Designed very much with  the young of today in mind who live much more minimally than their parents did, with far less in the way of possessions. They may be working from home and so the solution is a desk storage bedding collection that is all encompassing and super flexible for easy living. It is a  continuation of the successful industrial modular look with contrasting textures carried over from last season.

Many of the pieces are multi functional such as the desk/ dressing table which is easily packed away if more space is needed.

As well as these key looks there is also a quite sophisticated non gender stereotype children’s range.

 All in all a very impressive range of products.

Uncategorized

Why has Melamine suddenly become so desirable?

Have you noticed that most  of the high street shops, including supermarkets such as Asda and Sainsburys are full of gorgeous, what appears to be china, but is in fact Melamine. I was so curious as to why this could be, that I sent out a questionnaire to some of the buyers and designers. The only one who has got back to me so far is Laura Ashley, so thank you and below are the answers. laura ashley

Laura Ashley Spring summer 2017 Melamine plate with a fresh green outside feel to the design.

Until recently Melamine had rather a poor reputation but  that appears to have changed over the last couple of years. High street stores are now selling melamine plates trays and cups with really interesting and varied  new designs and  the quality of the product feels better, weightier and as though it will last for longer. What has made this change?

I think lifestyle changes are a factor here, at Laura Ashley we have talked a lot recently about people wanting to enjoy experiences, especially shared experiences. So entertaining, particularly informally, outside has grown in popularity. We have seen success with our outdoor entertaining and picnic ranges.

Is it being made from something different?

Not sure about the technicalities of product production but have noticed that there are a number of different styles that are giving melamine a more ‘realistic’ look and feel. Either with replicating a terracotta finish or uneven surfaces that that have the effect of something being ‘hand made’.

Can it be washed in a dishwasher?

Yes but not microwavable

Where has the inspiration for the designs come from?

We develop designs that we want our customers to enjoy, so we think carefully about where and how the product might be used. Not necessarily looking at a melamine version of a ceramic range, our ranges are designed in their own right. In keeping with a more casual way of living and the importance of entertaining, we think the designs should have a sense of fun and bring a smile to you face when you get them out.

Melamine is still a more affordable product than china.

 

Screen Shot 2017-04-27 at 10.26.29

Marks and Spencer Spring Summer 2017 Melamine from the Frida Range This punchy and quirky floral range of melamine is inspired by the folk art feel of Frida Kahlo’s work.

 

Anthropologie 004_1029-color_RGB_Post_ICSAnthropologie  Spring Summer 2017 This range of plates has a strong Morocco Vibe with the design giving more than a nod to Moroccan tile design.

oli bonasLeaf Stripe Tray £28 DUE APRILOliver Bonas Spring Summer 2017 Melamine tray with stylized leaf and stripe design.

 

Screen Shot 2017-04-27 at 11.02.54

Sainsburys Spring summer 2017  trays and plates with a nautical theme.