Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Alexa Hampton And Kravet To Host Trunk Show At Winter Las Vegas Market

Vegas Design Center (LVDC) at World Market Center, the region’s premier design resource, presents a special event during Winter Las Vegas Market for design industry professionals and market attendees. 2013 Design Icon Alexa Hampton will showcase her latest fabric and trim collection with Kravet during a live trunk show following the Design Icon award presentation. The collection is inspired by the northeastern coastal landscape, resulting in a versatile and casual selection grounded by linens and textures in a fresh color palette of coastal blue, jade and neutral. The fabrics, along with additional collections by Hampton from other design-inspired manufacturers, will be showcased in a dramatic window display located on the first floor of Building C throughout Market.

Hampton is president and featured designer of Mark Hampton LLC, one of the country’s most prestigious and respected interior design firms. A perennial member of Architectural Digest and House Beautiful’s top designers’ list and Elle Décor’s A-List, Hampton has received countless recognition from other premier outlets, from The New York Times to Cosmopolitan to Cottages and Gardens, as well as from international publications. She is a trustee for the board of the New York School of Interior Design, a published author, a contributing columnist to the Wall Street Journal and was one of three interior designers who launched Gilt Group’s Home Design Boutique. Additionally, she has designed a number of successful eponymous collections of furniture, fabrics, trimming, lighting, rugs, and mantels.
    
 

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

AHFA's California Officials to Present at 2013 Sustainability Summit

The California official heading up revisions to that state's longtime flammability regulation and the scientist whose research prompted the urgent regulatory overhaul currently underway will both participate in the 2013 Sustainability Summit presented by the American Home Furnishings Alliance (AHFA).

The event is slated for February 20-21 at the Marriott South Park in Charlotte, N.C. Registration information is available online here.

"The environmental and health consequences of our industry's efforts to comply with longtime flammability regulations have been the subject of much debate in 2012. And the resolution of those issues is likely to impact all segments of our industry in 2013 – suppliers, manufacturers and retailers alike," notes Bill Perdue, AHFA's vice president of regulatory affairs. "As a result, we have decided to devote the entire first half of our 2013 Summit to the regulatory policies, emerging science and consumer debate surrounding upholstered furniture flammability."

Featured guests for the first half of the program include Tonya Blood, chief of the California Bureau of Electronic and Appliance Repair, Home Furnishings and Thermal Insulation (BEAR-HFTI), and Dr. Arlene Blum, founder and executive director of the Green Science Policy Institute in Berkeley, Calif.

The Bureau of Home Furnishings and Thermal Insulation is tasked with protecting California consumers by implementing health and safety standards for bedding, furniture and thermal insulation. The bureau fast-tracked revisions to its 1975 flammability standard, TB 117, after a Chicago Tribune investigative report last summer examined the suspected eco-toxicity of flame retardant chemicals used to meet the standard's strict open flame test. Blood, who was appointed to her post just last April, has overseen the revisions and will present the finalized rule at the Sustainability Summit.

Blum has been examining the toxicity of flame retardant chemicals since the 1970s when her research was instrumental in banning the use of brominated tris in children's pajamas. Her studies figured prominently in the Tribune's investigative report, and she made headlines again in November with the release of a study examining the flame retardant chemicals found in sofas purchased over the last two decades. She has been invited to present the Summit's keynote address on how business, industry, science and government can work together on a "sustainable" strategy for chemical policy reform.

To bring further depth to the FR chemical conversation, AHFA has assembled a stakeholder panel to be moderated by Dr. Ana Mascareñas, policy and communications coordinator with Physicians for Social Responsibility in Los Angeles (PSR-LA). In addition to Tonya Blood and Arlene Blum, the panel will include:

Robert Luedeka, executive director of the Polyurethane Foam Association;
Hardy Poole, vice president of regulatory and technical affairs for the National Textile Association;
Don Coleman, president of the Upholstered Furniture Action Council (UFAC); and
Malin ¤sman, product requirements and compliance specialist for IKEA North America.
To add a national perspective to the discussion, Chris Andresen from Washington D.C.-based Dutko Associates will bring attendees up to date on the Consumer Product Safety Commission's progress on a federal flammability standard, as well as efforts to reform the federal Toxic Substances Control Act. Also, Joel Tenney, director of advocacy for ICL Industrial Products, will address emerging technology within the FR chemical industry.

AHFA's Perdue will close the opening day business program with a brief review of California Proposition 65 labeling requirements for upholstered products that still contain the flame retardant TDCPP.

While the first half of the Summit will address the environmental impact of product – specifically, the environmental impact of flammability policy and regulation – the second half will be devoted to the environmental impact of manufacturing and distribution operations, with a special emphasis on energy efficiencies. Bob Leker, renewable energy program manager for the North Carolina Energy Office will present "Embracing an Energy Efficient Future," and Wendy Cockerham, of Weaver Cooke Energy Solutions in Greensboro, N.C., will discuss "Lighting Retrofits and Improved Energy Efficiencies."

A case study in environmental efficiencies will be presented by Paul Kaminski, director of environment, health and safety for Ethan Allen Inc. Kaminski has spearheaded modifications to AHFA's EFEC environmental management program in order to implement it across Ethan Allen's company-owned store and distribution center network. As a result of Kaminski's efforts – and the cost-saving efficiencies experienced at the company's retail locations – AHFA is now preparing a modified EFEC program designed for implementation at retail stores.

Shifting the attention to responsible recycling initiatives, AHFA has invited Ryan Trainer, executive director of the International Sleep Products Association (ISPA), to share his organization's battle against "extended producer responsibility laws," which require manufacturers to finance the costs of recycling or safely disposing of their products. Several initiatives have targeted bedding, and upholstered furniture could easily be added to these state-by-state efforts to reduce landfill content. ISPA supports a more efficient, cost-effective national system with uniform rules from coast to coast.

Finally, AHFA will close the 2013 Summit with a panel discussion including representatives from several organizations promoting consumer information labeling within the home furnishings industry. "What Consumers Really Want to Know: The Case for Transparency," will cover foam, fabric, bedding and furniture labels designed to provide health and environmental information to consumers in an easy-to-understand format.

Until January 31, registration for the 2013 Summit is $299 for AHFA members and $399 for non-members. After January 31, member registration increases to $350, and non-member registration will be $500.

The Summit registration covers a light breakfast both mornings, plus lunch both days. In addition, all Summit attendees are invited to attend an awards reception February 20, during which the 2012 Sage Award Winner for environmental excellence, Gat Creek Furniture, will be honored.

A limited number of rooms are available at the Marriott SouthPark at the discounted group rate of $150 until January 29. Attendees are urged to contact the hotel promptly at 800/228-9290 or 704-364-8220 for reservations, requesting the AHFA group rate.

AHFA's Sustainability Summit is the only forum in the home furnishings industry devoted to sustainability issues.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Art Van Furniture Has A New Vice President

Brian Bandarra has been named Vice President, General Manager, Mattress World Stores, for Art Van Furniture. Bandarra comes to Art Van Furniture with an impressive retail resume encompassing over 20 years of experience, having served as Executive  Vice President of Sales and Operations for such diverse national retailers as Mattress Firm, Lenscrafters, Pearle Vision, General Nutrition Centers and David’s Bridal Shops.

“I am very excited to join the Art Van Furniture organization,” said Bandarra. “The company’s reputation as a furniture and mattress powerhouse is well known throughout the industry. I am looking forward to working with the team and will look to add value as fast as possible.”

Bandarra replaces Armando Murillo, who left the company to pursue other interests. In his position, Bandarra will be responsible for the entire Mattress World operations, both in Michigan and Indianapolis, Indiana.  In a related move, Bandarra and the Mattress World operation will now report to Steve Glucksman, Vice President, New Business Development.

From 2005 to 2010, Bandarra acted as the Executive Vice President of Sales and Field Operations for Mattress Firm, a national bedding chain.  In this role, Bandarra oversaw the company’s growth from 220 to 520+ locations throughout the United States. Since 2010, he has been involved in a start-up retail operation based in Texas.  

Bandarra holds a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering from the United States Naval Academy and served five years as a supply officer in the US Navy prior to beginning his retail career.

Surya Announced Partnership With Rug Designer Malene

Surya has announced an exclusive partnership with Brooklyn, NY based designer, Malene B. Known for her globally inspired aesthetic, she has gained a strong following in recent years within the design community for her thoughtfully designed custom rugs.

Her passion for world travel and cultural exploration are reflected in Voyages and Destinations, two broad new ranges of flat-weave and hand-tufted area rugs that bring her signature style to the consumer. From the rice paddies of Bali to Carnival celebrations in the Caribbean, the spirited collections transport home decor to faraway places with their globally inspired motifs, unique textures and rich palettes. “Malene B brings an entirely new aesthetic to the Surya brand with her globally inspired design perspective and playful sense of color. Her designs tap into the growing convergence between distinct cultural styles – which I believe will resonate strongly with our retail partners and consumers,” says Surya President, Satya Tiwari.

The collections will make their debut during the upcoming Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market beginning January 9 – 16, 2012. Surya will be co-hosting an event with Malene B in the home accessory brand’s expansive new showroom, 11-A-1, where she will share her style inspirations with retailers and designers. The catered event begins Thursday, January 10th at 2pm. Surya customers, media and all Market visitors are invited to attend.

New ICFA Members In 2013

The International Casual Furnishings Association (ICFA) announces that Bruce Erickson of Williams All Seasons, Highland Park., Ill., will continue as chairman of the organization's Retail Council in 2013.

ICFA membership includes all sectors of the casual furnishings industry, including retailers, manufacturers, suppliers, sales representatives and designers. The Retail Council provides leadership for programming and services designed to meet the needs of the industry's retail stores.

Kristine Schultz-Hutchinson, Patios Plus, Rancho Mirage, Calif., will serve as vice chairman of the council in 2013. Gail Williams, Sunshine Furniture, Vero Beach, Fla.; and Mary Beth Singleton, Tropic Aire Patio Gallery, West Columbia, S.C., are new members to the council.

Returning to the council for 2013 are Bruce Aronson, Pool & Patio Center, Metairie, La.; Cathy Galbreath, ABSCO Fireplace & Patio, Birmingham, Ala.; David Schweig, Sunnyland Furniture, Dallas, Texas; Garrett Wallace, Yard Art Patio & Fireplace, Irving, Texas; Paul DeMerlis, The Sign of the Skier, Toronto, Ontario; Mary Fruehauf, Fruehauf's Patio & Garden, Boulder, Colo.; Becky Stover, Stover Hearth & Patio, Frederick, Md.; and Greg Martin, Kolo Collection, Atlanta, Ga.

Source: AHFA

Saturday, January 05, 2013

Upcoming Exhibitions At Dayton Art Institute

A trio of art exhibits commemorating the 100th anniversary of the 1913 Dayton flood will kick off the 2013 special exhibition schedule for The Dayton Art Institute. The just-announced DAI calendar also will include a pair of summer exhibitions celebrating sports in art and will wrap up with an exhibition of medieval alabaster sculpture from London’s Victoria and Albert Museum. In the fall of 2014, the museum will host an exhibition of Japanese art in the Deco style. Associate Director Jane...

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Friday, January 04, 2013

Bruce Erickson To Continue As Chair of ICFA Retail Council

The International Casual Furnishings Association (ICFA) announces that Bruce Erickson of Williams All Seasons, Highland Park., Ill., will continue as chairman of the organization's Retail Council in 2013.

ICFA membership includes all sectors of the casual furnishings industry, including retailers, manufacturers, suppliers, sales representatives and designers. The Retail Council provides leadership for programming and services designed to meet the needs of the industry's retail stores.

Kristine Schultz-Hutchinson, Patios Plus, Rancho Mirage, Calif., will serve as vice chairman of the council in 2013. Gail Williams, Sunshine Furniture, Vero Beach, Fla.; and Mary Beth Singleton, Tropic Aire Patio Gallery, West Columbia, S.C., are new members to the council.

Returning to the council for 2013 are Bruce Aronson, Pool & Patio Center, Metairie, La.; Cathy Galbreath, ABSCO Fireplace & Patio, Birmingham, Ala.; David Schweig, Sunnyland Furniture, Dallas, Texas; Garrett Wallace, Yard Art Patio & Fireplace, Irving, Texas; Paul DeMerlis, The Sign of the Skier, Toronto, Ontario; Mary Fruehauf, Fruehauf's Patio & Garden, Boulder, Colo.; Becky Stover, Stover Hearth & Patio, Frederick, Md.; and Greg Martin, Kolo Collection, Atlanta, Ga.

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

IKEA in Kansas City Area


Welcome!IKEA, the world’s leading home furnishings retailer, today expressed its appreciation to the City Council of Merriam, Kansas for its unanimous approval last night of plans for a Kansas City-area store – increasing the Swedish retailer’s presence in the Midwestern United States. Last month the plans received unanimous approval by the Merriam Planning Commission. Pending the land purchase, permits and demolition of on-site buildings, construction of the future IKEA Merriam can begin Summer 2013, and open Fall 2014. Until then, customers can shop at the closest IKEA stores in Centennial, CO; Frisco, TX; Bloomington, MN; Bolingbrook, IL; or Schaumburg, IL; or online at IKEA-USA.com.

“IKEA is thrilled and honored at the support voiced by Merriam City officials and staff in favor of our opening a Kansas City-area store in Fall 2014”

Located eight miles southwest of Kansas City, Missouri, the 349,000-square-foot future IKEA store will be built along the eastern side of Interstate-35 at the Johnson Drive exit on 18 acres to be purchased from DDR Corp. One level of parking below the store, a two-level parking structure, and spaces accessible at-grade will provide more than 1,200 parking spaces on-site. Store plans reflect the same unique architectural design for which IKEA stores are known worldwide. IKEA also is evaluating potential on-site power generation to complement its current U.S. renewable energy presence at 90% of its U.S. locations.

“IKEA is thrilled and honored at the support voiced by Merriam City officials and staff in favor of our opening a Kansas City-area store in Fall 2014,” said IKEA U.S. president Mike Ward. “We look forward to bringing our unique shopping experience closer to the 60,000 customers already in the area, to introducing new customers to the IKEA concept, to hiring 300 coworkers and to creating more than 500 construction jobs.”

IKEA Merriam will feature nearly 10,000 exclusively designed items, 50 inspirational room-settings, three model home interiors, a supervised children’s play area, and a 450-seat restaurant serving Swedish specialties such as meatballs with lingonberries and salmon plates, as well as American dishes. Other family-friendly features include a ‘Children’s IKEA’ area in the Showroom, baby care rooms, preferred parking and play areas throughout the store. In addition to the more than 500 jobs that are expected to be created during the construction phase, approximately 300 coworkers would join the IKEA family when the new store opens. IKEA Merriam also would provide significant annual sales and property tax revenue for local governments and schools.

IKEA, drawing from its Swedish heritage and respect of nature, believes it can be a good business while doing good business and aims to minimize impacts on the environment. Globally, IKEA evaluates locations regularly for conservation opportunities, integrates innovative materials into product design, works to maintain sustainable resources, and flat-packs goods for efficient distribution. Specific U.S. sustainable efforts include: recycling waste material; incorporating environmental measures into the actual buildings with energy-efficient HVAC and lighting systems, recycled construction materials, skylights in warehouse areas, and water-conserving restrooms; and operationally, eliminating plastic bags from the check-out process, phasing-out the sale of incandescent light bulbs, facilitating recycling of customers’ compact fluorescent bulbs, and by 2016 selling and using only LED bulbs. IKEA also is in the process of rolling out solar energy installations atop nearly 90% of its U.S. locations, and has installed electric vehicle charging stations at nine stores in the West.

IKEA strives to be ‘The Life Improvement Store,’ and since its 1943 founding in Sweden has offered home furnishings of good design and function at low prices so the majority of people can afford them. There are currently more than 330 IKEA stores in 40 countries, including 38 in the U.S. IKEA incorporates sustainability into day-to-day business and supports initiatives benefiting children and the environment.

Source: BusinessWire