Friday, May 31, 2013

ICFF 2013 PART 2


Trends are always a part of what bloggers and design soothsayers are on the lookout for at ICFF. I'll admit it; I'm no different.  I'm sure there was much more to marvel at then what I'm about to highlight. Having to man our booth didn't allow for a lot of time to see the rest of the show. I was forced to use my flea market buying technique, which requires a roving eye, a pair of track shoes and a great deal of luck.
Here's what I saw that I felt set some worthy trends. First was the introduction of technology, well not just technology but TECHNOLOGY. Now some will say that was so yesterday but the technology at the show this year went way past my imagination. At Focal technology and ergonomics were in full swing with these workstations of the future. These tractor-like seats pivoted from a central stem swaying with your body position as you reached to your right or left.
Everything about the work surface was arranged for maximum utilization of space and included every current gadget you could think of. These workstations were a designer's dream and lines of people trying them out were testament to their originality.
Technologies effect on the senses wasn't limited to sight and touch. Vendors specializing in the field of audio advancement were in abundance at the show, but none were as eye-catching or pleasing to the ears as Oswalds Mill Audio. The shear size of their speakers was enough to make you look twice. Their wooden megaphones atop trapezoidal bases hinted at nostalgia with a very contemporary twist. And the sound was magnificent. I was just thankful we were on the total opposite end of the hall. They ran those speakers at high volume 24/7.
Rugs also did a spin on combining old and new. Since I could only run the show I wasn't able to stop and talk to the people at Jan Kath so I can't really comment on the true technique used here but I can tell you that the results were spectacular. Here's what they looked like. They appeared to have taken vintage Tibetan/Moroccan rugs that may have been worn out in spots and then rewoven over them with new silk and wool.
The effect was like looking at an Egyptian hieroglyph where the colors had faded a bit and parts of the original had been lost exposing the underlying surface but in a good way. I loved these rugs. I loved the sense of history they possessed. I loved the recycled aspect. I loved the designer's ability to choose the perfect colors and the right amount of new weaving to make these awe-inspiring pieces of art. It was no wonder they decided to hang these on their walls rather than lay them on the floor.
Still trending were the references to mid;-century; the forties through the sixties. Jonathan Adler was there with his ever present homage to a bygone Palm Springs but so were FAB with their sixties kitsch that may have swung more toward accessory than furniture.
One of my favorite wall-covering vendors was this small booth of whimsical wallpapers at the near end of our aisle. I never got the vendors name but every time I passed it by on my way out or off for an outrageously priced Grande Java Chip Frappuccino Lite from Starbucks it made me smile.
How could I not end without referencing the biggest trend of the show - the live edge. It seems everyone is jumping on this bandwagon. If saw one live edge table I saw a dozen. Here the people of Sentient have used the live edge on their head and footboards. I expect Crate & Barrel, Room & Board and Pottery Barn won't be far behind with their own versions of the live edge. I actually think I saw a live edge table last week at West Elm.

Studio Chair, The Tappen House, Little Compton, RI
Peter C. Jones, photographer
Represented by Bonni Benrubi Gallery

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