Top 5 Trends from Neo­Con 2012

VM&RD - - CONTENTS - Katie Clements Ma­te­rial & Trend Spe­cial­ist Chute Gerde­man's

Neo­Con is a con­fer­ence for the de­sign world to ex­plore the most in­no­va­tive prod­ucts and re­sources for com­mer­cial in­dus­tries, from cor­po­rate to health­care to re­tail. For de­sign­ers and ar­chi­tects, it’s an op­por­tu­nity to be­come ed­u­cated as well as in­spired. As a de­signer and spe­cial­ist of ma­te­ri­als trends, this is one of the most ex­cit­ing shows for me to at­tend. I can’t keep all the great dis­cov­er­ies to my­self though, so I’ve com­piled the Top Five Trends for you.

Bold, Vi­brant Colour

Af­ter tour­ing the show­rooms for a day, one thing is very ap­par­ent—colour is in! The colour trends in fash­ion have made their way into the in­te­rior de­sign in­dus­try. It was not spe­cific to one colour, but in­stead, they were all bold and vi­brant, used like a rain­bow, grouped to­gether bring­ing life and en­ergy into the space.

Unique Meet­ing Spa­ces

As we have seen in the in­dus­try, typ­i­cal meet­ing spa­ces at the of­fice are evolv­ing to be more res­i­den­tial, com­fort­able and fun places to con­cen­trate. This was a very pop­u­lar trend at Neo­Con. Con­fer­ence calls and in­ter­nal brain­storm­ing ses­sions long for com­fort­able seat­ing and a more re­laxed feel. We saw many unique meet­ing places that al­lowed for pri­vacy but did not sac­ri­fice de­sign. Al­cove and co­coon-like so­fas and chairs cre­ate a pri­vate space with tech­nol­ogy in­cor­po­rated. Tables are lower re­sem­ble the height of a cof­fee ta­ble height to have a fam­ily room feel.

Fun Lighting Makes a Dif­fer­ence

I am al­ways drawn to unique lighting pen­dants, and the fur­ni­ture show­rooms at the Mer­chan­dise Mart did not dis­ap­point. How­ever, some of the best ex­am­ples of lighting were not items that were sold or of­fered in the show­room! The dec­o­ra­tive pen­dants were used to en­hance the show­room de­sign and fur­ni­ture of­fer­ing. Quan­tity counts. Group­ing sim­ple pen­dants to­gether cre­ates a dy­namic fo­cal.

Tablet Arms

We all know how im­por­tant tech­nol­ogy is in our daily life. Tech­nol­ogy in re­tail en­vi­ron­ments is im­per­a­tive in high­light­ing a prod­uct above the rest, al­low­ing it to sell faster than the com­peti­tors. But tech­nol­ogy in the work­place is cru­cial in al­low­ing em­ploy­ees to do their job quickly and ef­fi­ciently. Work­sta­tions are be­com­ing smaller and more con­densed, and hotel­ing is a big trend right now. One huge take­away from Neo­Con is that there is an ar­ray of new com­puter tablet arms avail­able. With work­sta­tions be­com­ing smaller, there is not a lot of ex­tra room for big and bulky desk­top com­put­ers. Tablet arms pro­vide a uni­form and clean work sur­face, and I can def­i­nitely see this prod­uct mak­ing its way into re­tail ap­pli­ca­tions.

Colour Gra­di­ent in Car­pet

I am al­ways anx­ious to check out the car­pet show­rooms at Neo­Con to see the new prod­ucts and trends in floor­ing. I saw one trend in the car­pet world, bold colour in a gra­di­ent from dark to light. Mil­liken, Shaw and Mo­hawk had great ex­am­ples of this. The colours are vi­brant but the tex­ture is min­i­mal. The in­di­vid­ual car­pet sam­ples look like one solid block of colour. When we saw the mock-ups in the show­rooms, the colours would tran­si­tion from dark to light and back to dark. I love that the gra­di­ent is sub­tle and the colour is such a pop

About Katie Clements

As Chute Gerde­man's Ma­te­rial and Trend Spe­cial­ist, Katie Clements is in­volved in all projects pro­vid­ing de­sign sup­port as a ma­te­ri­als and color ex­pert. She uti­lizes her vast knowl­edge and ex­ten­sive li­brary to present clients with well-con­sid­ered se­lec­tions for fab­ric, car­pet, tile, wall­cov­er­ing, lighting, fur­ni­ture and any other spe­cial fea­ture.

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