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CFS trends display took retailers back to the 70s

 3 July 2018     Greg Simpson 

TORONTO – Retailers attending the recent Canadian Furniture Show were advised to look to the 1970s for the trends consumers are following here in 2018. Vivid colours in pastel and floral are increasingly popular, with designers opting for curves on furniture that increasingly includes attractive pieces for small-space living. Dark espresso, dominant in years past, seems to be waning in competition with textures, concretes, and blonde wood.

Show organisers added a Trend Showcase this year to focus attention on pieces from the floor that best illustrate changing tastes and commissioned Toronto-based Linda Mazur Design Group to make it a reality.

The Trends Showcase provided a glimpse across the entire product assortment on display at the recent Canadian Furniture Show. “The 70s are very in…lots of 70s,” Mazur said in describing current furniture design trends. It wasn’t hard to miss. The sapphire velvet sofa from A-Class Upholstery with the channel tufting nearly jumped off the floor and Renwil’s Cowhide rugs emphasise the return of the disco era to popular furniture design, while incorporating a certain ‘faux authenticity’ that is gaining steam.

“Patterns are huge right now; flowers, Navajo, any bold and bright patterns,” Mazur continued, adding,“curves are really big in furniture.” Marcantonio Design’s leather sofa with the “retro Scandinavian vibe” and the diamond-tufted Pippa sofa from Van Gogh Designs are indicative of these trends reaching retail floors.

The Goods by Van Gogh Designs featured several unique chairs combining both curve and pattern such The Jasper, a black and white butterfly chair and the Tiga lounge chair. Cosmos Carpets included an area rug that accentuated the pattern trend nicely.

Living spaces are changing as well. People reside in more unique spaces than ever and the furniture industry is responding to these changes. Mazur points out a new electric fireplace console from Dimplex North America as her prime example of small space living adding, “the curves are just beautiful.” AITO Products’ sleak blonde wood bar chairs and the Renwil’s collection of light fixtures further emphasize the design possibilities of unique spaces.

Some pieces piqued interest for more than just their aesthetics. An office chair submitted by CUTIS (Canada Ukraine Trade Investment Support) and numerous pieces from The Goods by Van Gogh highlighted the increasing globalisation of the Canadian furniture industry. Crate Designs, who featured a textured, rustic wood bed, has a lesser known niche of servicing shelters, group homes, and other such venues due to a rarely matched durability and comforting designs.

So how is a retailer to take this Trend Showcase? How does one walk through the drapery-laden rows, see the contrasted elements of different arrangements, and then translate what they've seen to their own floors. Turns out, it depends on where that floor is. “Canada is a very different place, from coast to coast,” explained Mazur, “The market for certain designs might be different from say, the mountains in British Columbia, to the island of P.E.I.” To accomplish that, a more broad, generic approach was taken, with a little bit of a taste for everyone.

As a nationally recognised designer, a regular Ask the Expert at the National Home Show and columnist for several publications including the Toronto Sun and Condo Life magazine, the organisers believed Mazur was an adept choice to sort through numerous submissions and create a fluid display of current trends. A graduate of the University of Western Ontario, Mazur brought over 15 years experience in both interior and full-scale designs to the project.

Between the 70s return, an abundance of curves, pastels and bright patterns, the functionality and the flair, the Trend Showcase brought together elements from across the entire Canadian Furniture Show, which was spread across four halls of the International Centre here and included products from both the established and new exhibitors.

The next edition of CFS will be held from May 24 to 26, 2019 at the International Centre.


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This HGO article was written by:
Greg Simpson

Greg Simpson is a freelance journalist based in Port Hope, Ontario.


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