Saturday, June 28, 2014

New Study by Design Research Shows How Color is Changing in the American Kitchen

Color preferences are changing in the American kitchen, according to a new release of the on-going The American Living Survey (TALS). While neutral whites and beiges continue to be dominant, yellow is growing fastest as a primary kitchen color, up 57% nationally versus 2013. Yellow’s uptick is coming at the expense of green which has enjoyed a five year run but is now trending down, according to the survey of 600 American households.

The survey also looks at market segments. Generation Y consumers are demonstrating very specific preferences with nearly 44% of those surveyed identifying white as the color they prefer. Generation Y is also the group that most prefers black as an accent color because it is the strongest compliment to their preferred white. Black accents are also more preferred by men than women, urban versus suburban or rural households and southern households.

The American Living Survey™ is a unique tool that enables product development and marketing executives to look to the future with more certainty. TALS delivers a profile of how Americans are living today, how taste and styles are changing, and what consumers are seeking in the future. It can guide not only design direction, but influence everything from specific products to marketing. Wave three of The American Living Survey focused on Kitchen Purchasing habits.

The strength of the data and the analysis of the information is the key resource of the study. “Lots of color resources will name the color of the year or prepare predictions as to what next year’s colors will be,” says Richard Babick, President of Design Research. “That’s great to a point. Those resources don’t tell you what percentage of the market those colors represent and they don’t tell you which consumer segments like which colors. The American Living Survey does just that.”

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Surya To Invest in New Corporate Office

Surya has announced plans to invest $33M to build a new corporate office and distribution facility in Cartersville, Ga. Expected to add more than 200 new jobs in the north Georgia area, the expansion will allow the rug and home accessories manufacturer to consolidate shipping and distribution for its multi-category product offerings, creating a highly efficient logistics base and increased operational flexibility.

“During the past several years, we have launched a number of new categories, resulting in significant revenue growth along with a corresponding increase in our employee base and warehouse capacity,” said Satya Tiwari, president, Surya. “At our core, we are focused on providing the best service possible to our designer and retailer customers, and this new facility will not only enable us to optimally serve our growing customer base, but will also offer an inspiring and creative workspace for our employees. The commute for employees residing in the Atlanta area will also be notably reduced, making Surya an even more attractive company for which to work.”

Surya has grown from $2.7M in sales in 2004 to $80M this year and has been recognized by Inc. Magazine as one of America’s fastest growing privately held companies in 2011, 2012 and 2013. The company has one of the fastest fulfillment rates in the industry, with 90 percent of running line products being shipped within 24 hours from order processing.

The new, state-of-the-art, 1,000,000-square-foot facility will include 50,000 square feet of office space and serve as U.S. headquarters for the company’s executive administration, supply chain management, customer support, sales and creative development functions. Surya is expected to break ground on the new building in August 2014.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Bertolini Sanctuary Seating Introduces the High Density Stacker

Bertolini Sanctuary Seating is please to introduce a new addition to their multi-purpose seating collection, The High Density Stacker. "At Bertolini Sanctuary Seating we continuously strive to expand our line of products in order to provide our clients with the best possible seating solutions for their facilities," says Chuck Horn, President of Bertolini Inc.

In response to mobile needs in the church seating market, Bertolini Sanctuary Seating has expanded its offerings to include this low-cost yet durable option in high density seating. This High Density Stacker is perfect for mobile churches and churches with robust facility utilization requiring frequent setup and storage. It is also ideal for church organizations, corporate, educational and healthcare environments. The High-Density stacking chairs are lightweight and feature diamond perforated seats & backs for exceptional comfort. The cleanable polymer shells are molded to fit the body and diamond perforated to provide air flow to keep you cool and comfortable. The High Density stacker stacks 25 chairs high on the Heavy Duty High Density Cart and rolls smoothly and fits easily through doorways. Bertolini Sanctuary Seating provides a 1 year limited warranty for normal wear and tear.

The High Density Stacker is now available for purchase on Bertolini Sanctuary Seating's e-commerce church chair store. It provides the customer with a product description, specifications, lead time, and warranty information. A short video is also available to view the demonstration of how effortless it is to stack the High Density Stacker.

Bertolini Sanctuary Seating is a design leader in the use of ergonomically correct chair design and its Flex fit seat design technology for churches. Their chairs are light and strong. Their expertise in the manufacture of quality stackable seating and commitment to superior customer service wins the appreciation of congregations worldwide.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Brown and Schlesinger Given Lifetime Achievement Awards

The International Casual Furnishings Association (ICFA) has named William S. Brown Sr. and Fred Schlesinger the 2014 recipients of the casual industry's prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award.

Brown was a leader in the casual furniture industry for 20 years. "He was a man who reinvented our industry and brought it a level of performance and excellence that we find very difficult to emulate," says Henry Vanderminden IV, president of Telescope Casual Furniture.

After some 15 years in the steel industry, Brown shifted his attention to furniture manufacturing, working for Delwood Furniture Company and then Burris Inds., a North Carolina-based upholstery manufacturer.

In 1980 he was named president of Marathon Corporation, a privately-owned Birmingham, Ala., conglomerate that included Winston Furniture, an aluminum patio furniture manufacturer. In early 1986, Brown and a group of investors acquired Winston from Marathon, and in 1987 they acquired Lyon-Shaw, a North Carolina wrought iron furniture manufacturer. They took the company public on the American Stock Exchange shortly thereafter.

Throughout his casual industry career, Brown was active in the Summer and Casual Furniture Manufacturers Association (SCFMA) – which preceded the ICFA – and served as chairman, president and director for over 10 years. He also served as a director on the American Furniture Manufacturers Association board for six years.

He was a civic-minded executive, serving the Birmingham Rotary Club, The Country Club of Birmingham and the Independent Presbyterian Church. In the mid-70s, he was elected to the Mountain Brook City Council.
Brown was married to Jere Louise Moore Brown for 37 years and had five children. He died in 1998 after a brief illness. He was 62.

Schlesinger was one of the founding members of the SCFMA in 1959 and he served on the board of directors for 15 years. His McAurther Collection received the first Lillian B. Winchester "best of show" award. He is also said to have hired the industry's first female sales representative.

Las Vegas Market to Hosting 4th Annual Gift for Life Benefit

Las Vegas Market will be hosting its 4th annual gala charity event benefiting Gift For Life, the sole charitable organization for the gift, stationery and home décor industries, on Monday, July 28, during the Summer 2014 Las Vegas Market, Sunday, July 27, to Thursday, July 31, 2014.  Beginning this summer, the “Up on 10” fundraiser will be held on the 10th floor of Building C, space 1052,  making it more accessible the growing numbers of gift, home décor and lifestyle resources concentrated in Building C.

“Las Vegas Market’s ‘Up on 10’ reception puts the “fun” in fundraising, with 100% of proceeds from this special event benefitting Gift For Life,” stated Dorothy Belshaw, president of Gift & Home Décor, International Market Centers. “As the leading furniture, home decor and gift destination in the western United States, Las Vegas Market takes its commitment to the industry very seriously, and we hope and expect that this year’s benefit will exceed the nearly $15,000 raised through last year’s event.”

This year’s “Las Vegas experience” silent auction will feature a variety of Vegas-themed items the can be redeemed during the Winter 2015 Market. Items will include hotel stays; restaurant vouchers; VIP services at top nightclubs; a helicopter ride over the Grand Canyon; tickets on the High Roller, the new Las Vegas observation wheel; horseback riding or rock climbing lessons in Red Rock Canyon; spa packages and many more. 

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Surya Launches Inaugral Semi-Annual Sales Event

Surya has launched its first ever semi-annual sales event. To help customers boost store traffic and drive accessories sales during the slower summer months, the rug and home accessories brand is offering a rebate for Surya sales orders written from Aug. 1 through Labor Day.

This special promotion applies to all Surya categories, including rugs/rug pads, pillows, throws, wall decor, accent furniture, lighting, decorative accents and bedding, as well as clearance items. To spotlight Surya products and promote end consumer engagement, the brand has created a multi-faceted POP program, which includes window clings, posters, banners, table tents and other eye-catching promotional pieces. Surya is also launching an integrated national marketing campaign across multiple channels to generate both industry and consumer awareness of the sales event.

“We understand that the summer season can be challenging for our customers and wanted to do something special to show our appreciation for their loyalty,” said Satya Tiwari, president, Surya. “This event is a great way for our customers to offer extremely attractive pricing on thousands of fashion-forward rugs and accessories while increasing sales revenue and attracting new business. We look forward to working with each of our customers to optimize this exceptional sales opportunity.”

To take part in the promotion, customers must register at www.surya/semiannualsale by Friday, July 18. There is minimal to no cost to participate and Surya will provide store sales associates with either online or in-store product training prior to the kick-off of the event.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Agio Signed Lease with Las Vegas

Leading outdoor furniture manufacturer Agio International has signed a lease with, and will be a part of, the Las Vegas Market starting in July 2015. This long-term lease will find Agio International anchoring the 12th floor of Building C in a new 22,000 square foot showroom as part of the Casual Furnishings category launch.

Agio will begin build-out and make substantial upgrades in the physical space, including reconfiguring walls to improve the sightlines and make a prominent statement to visitors arriving on the 12th Floor. The display space will feature the same assortment of collections in Agio’s current 19,000-sq. ft. gallery in Chicago.

“This new showroom will help us reach an incremental retailer base that does not attend category specific shows,” said Bob Gaylord, President of Agio-USA. “Las Vegas Market attracts the traditional furniture and lifestyle stores, big box, catalog, and internet retailers, which aligns with our future growth plans. We currently show in High Point and Chicago’s Merchandise Mart to target these channels, but the Las Vegas Market will allow us to grow our business even further.”

Agio-USA is celebrating its twenty-fifth year in business in 2014.  As the largest outdoor furniture supplier in the United States, Agio offers unmatched selections of  dining, deep-seating and chat group collections made from extruded and cast aluminum along with all-weather wicker sets. Agio continues to lead the way with outdoor fire, a category it ignited years ago with its legendary portable gas fire pits.

“Having an industry leader like Agio at the Las Vegas Market reinforces our strategy of growing the Casual furniture offering here and reassures us that the timing is perfect for the industry’s needs,” said Craig Staack, vice president of home furnishings leasing for International Market Centers. “More and more traditional furniture retailers are recognizing the benefit of adding outdoor collections to their product mix, and this will allow those buyers to fulfill their buying needs at one market rather than adding another buying trip to their schedule.”

In July 2015, Las Vegas Market will launch 250,000 square feet of fully built-out permanent showroom and temporary exhibit space on the 12th and 13th floors in Building C devoted solely to the casual/outdoor category. “With the timing of our summer market lining up perfectly with the sales cycle of this growing segment, we wanted to set our partners up for success and launch these new floors when we were able to make the most positive impact. We’re committed both organizationally and financially to the success of our partners and want to give them a platform for future growth,” said Staack.

Hansgrohe/Axor Marks its Presence at Dwell on Design

From June 20- 22, Axor and Hansgrohe will be moving to Tinseltown for Dwell on Design (DODat the Los Angeles Convention Center (LACC). At the show (Booth 1016), the company will introduce the West Coast to Axor WaterDream by Nendo. The avant-garde installation will serve as a preview of the much-anticipated Axor ShowerProducts by Nendo, which will be released in 2015. Also playing a starring role in the booth will be Hansgrohe’s new kitchen offerings: the inventive, ergonomic and high-design Metris and Focus collections.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Harry M. Cornell Jr. Nominated for American Furniture Hall of Fame

The American Furniture Hall of Fame Foundation Inc. has announced that Harry M. Cornell Jr., chairman emeritus of Leggett & Platt Inc., is one of six candidates nominated for induction into the American Furniture Hall of Fame. Mr..Cornell transformed the company from five plants and $7 million in annual sales into a $4 billion company with 130 plants in 18 countries.

His many milestones include the initial public offering of Leggett & Platt common stock in 1967 and the 1979 listing on the New York Stock Exchange. As a supplier that manufactured component parts, created the machinery to make them and produced the raw materials, Cornell expanded Leggett & Platt into eight industries. Cornell received ISPA’s Exceptional Service Award in 1983. New members of the American Furniture Hall of Fame will be announced and officially inducted at the annual banquet celebration on Oct. 19 at the High Point Market.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Primo Orpilla to Speak at 7th annual CET Designer User Conference

Configura, maker of CET Designer software, announced on June 9, that Primo Orpilla will keynote its 7th annual CET Designer User Conference. Orpilla is a cofounder and principal of Studio O+A, a San Francisco-based interior design firm known for technology clients eBay, Facebook, PayPal and Yelp.

Configura Support and Training Manager Tracy Lanning said. Orpilla will talk about how technology and demographics in the last decade have converged to change the way people work and live. He will address that change in his wide-ranging review of the workplace typologies, the varieties of space types and architectural motifs that contribute to a successful work environment.

In 2011, Contract magazine named Studio O+A Designers of the Year. Orpilla is a leader in “democratic design,” with an emphasis on each client’s workplace culture. “I think a good designer is a storyteller, ideally a ‘ghostwriter,’” Orpilla said. “In many ways, clients want to weave the fabric of their story into their space. A designer should have many voices and points of view.”

Configura made the announcement during the annual NeoCon World’s Trade Fair in Chicago. Orpilla, at NeoCon to present at the show, stopped by Configura’s space at NeoCon to meet with company leaders and showroom visitors.

CET Designer users at NeoCon can stop by Configura’s space, 8-3062, to enter to win a free trip to the user conference.

The 7th annual CET Designer User Conference will be held Oct 22-23 at DeVos Place in Grand Rapids, Mich. This is the second year in a row that the conference will be held in West Michigan, which is home to the world’s largest office furniture manufacturers, including Steelcase and Haworth.

Additional conference highlights include a state of the industry presentation and breakout sessions for designers, IT and dealer management. CET Designer “power-user” instructors will share their techniques and best practices in implementing and using the software.


Madona Cumar Named Winner of Interior Design Competition By Resource Furniture

Georgia Tech, Architecture for Humanity, and Resource Furniture to present Zero Energy Housing Design studio work at Dwell on Design, Los Angeles. Resource Furniture and Clei will be exhibiting at Dwell on Design, Booth #935. Dwell on Design takes place at the Los Angeles Convention Center, June 20-22.

Spring semester students in Georgia Tech’s School of Architecture Zero Energy Design Housing Studio (ZED-H) participated in a juried design competition hosted by Resource Furniture.

Twelve students researched demographics, selected a household typology, and submitted a detailed occupant narrative and comprehensive interior layouts and designs. The competition was judged by an experienced group of industry professionals ranking each submission in eight categories: Design Inspiration, Holistic Design, Space Planning, Interior & Architectural Design, Energy, Marketability, Documentation and Community Integration.

The winning student, Madona Cumar, Master of Architecture (M.Arch), College of Architecture, Georgia Institute of Technology, designed a fluid home she called Empty Nesters: A New Housing Option. Ms. Cumar’s design was a well-thought-out exploration of a household that would experience shifting needs over time. Her solution allows for efficient accommodation of the household as it grows, shrinks or changes, providing for community amenities, energy efficiency, and highly flexible spaces throughout the home.

Stephen Taul, Architectural Designer & Studio Advisor, Alix Ogilvie, Program Manager, Architecture for Humanity, and Lisa Blecker, Resource Furniture, will discuss this innovative program and present the students’ work on the GE Monogram Innovation Stage on Saturday, June 21 at 12:30 p.m.

This past academic year, ZED-H students explored the development of well-designed, ultra-low energy, cost effective urban housing by researching energy and design, material and spatial innovation, interior design/function and community design, thanks to a gift from Resource Furniture and funding by Alcoa Foundation and Architecture for Humanity.

The competition jury was comprised of Amanda Dameron, Editor-in-Chief, Dwell; Paul Makovsky, Editorial Director, Metropolis; Graham Hill, Founder, LifeEdited; Pierluigi Colombo, Architect, Lead Designer for Clei, Eric Bunge, Principal, nArchitects, Mark Ginsberg, Principal, Curtis + Ginsberg; Diana Budd, Editor, Dwell; Seth Weissman, Managing Partner, Weissman Equities; Matthew Weissman, Managing Partner, Weissman Equities; Gary Paul, Principal, GP Incorporated Design Consulting; Lara Appleton, Senior Designer, Peter Marino, Inc.; Pepin Gelardi, Co-Founder, Tomorrow Lab; Theodore Ullrich, Co-Founder, Tomorrow Lab; Laura Bohn, Laura Bohn Interior Design; Christopher Bledsoe, Founding Partner, Stage 3 Properties; Andrew Bledsoe, Founding Partner, Stage 3 Properties.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

molo Showcases Its New Design at NeoCon 2014

NeoCon opened on June 9, 2014 and molo has showcased a new installation by founders/designers Stephanie Forsythe + Todd MacAllen. It is built entirely from molo’s flexible textile and paper partitions (softwall + softblock), expandable paper seating (softseating), and molo’s new paper benchwall + thinwall modular system. All of the products are based upon a flexible and expandable honeycomb structure, and belong to molo’s soft collection.

 molo’s products used to create the space come in a compressed form, making the installation very compact to begin with (and reducing the carbon footprint of transport). From only a few inches thick, the products expand up to 100 times their length.

There is a well-conceived flow to the space molo has created at NeoCon. Rounded walls made with benchwall + thinwall create movement from one space to the next. With multiple ways to enter and move through the space, the sightlines into the booth are an important consideration in its design, which only begins to fully show its structure as you enter the space.

As NeoCon is an exhibition dedicated to the contract market, the installation further shows the achievements and technical benefits that have made the soft collection such a success in office, retail, and other commercial interiors. In addition to flexibility and adaptability, the natural sound absorption of the products can be heard when walking through the installation lined with softwalls, benchwalls, and thinwalls. All of the paper furniture in molo’s installation is also treated with an environmentally friendly salt-based fire retardant – standard for all of molos’ paper products – which makes the designs suitable and safe for any sort of public or private installation.

Friday, June 06, 2014

ICFA Executive to Step Down

Joseph P. Logan, executive director of the International Casual Furnishings Association since its inception in 2008, and executive director of its predecessor organization, the Summer and Casual Furniture Manufacturers Association from 1999 to 2008, has announced he will step down from his post July 25.

Logan said he plans "a new program of study, increased philanthropic and board activities and service in my hometown of Winston-Salem and in North Carolina, and involvement in our state's growing wine industry."

"I have enjoyed my association with ICFA, its board of directors and members, and with the entire outdoor furnishings industry," Logan remarked. "We are planning a smooth leadership transition, and I look forward to seeing the ICFA continue to grow and flourish in the years to come."

ICFA is a division of the American Home Furnishings Alliance, and, prior to his appointment as executive director of ICFA and SCFMA, Logan served as vice president of financial services for AHFA.

"Joe has been a valued member of the AHFA team for more than two decades. Under his management, the ICFA thrived, expanding to become a more inclusive organization that serves every segment of the casual furnishings industry" said Andy Counts, AHFA's CEO. "Joe is the consummate association executive, and we will miss his leadership. We wish him much success in his future endeavors."

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

Surya Launches Instagram Contest

From now through June 20, 2014, rug and home accessories brand Surya Invites designers and retailers to Instagram a photo of themselves with a Surya tote bag in an interesting or unusual location for a chance to win free Surya products. Surya hands out thousands of colorful jute tote bags at various markets and events each year and wants to see all of the fun places that people take its bags.

The following prizes will be awarded to the three most creative and original entries:
       1st Prize: $1,000 worth of Surya products
       2nd Prize: $500 worth of Surya products
       3rd Prize: $250 worth of Surya products

To take part in the contest, entrants must:
       1. Follow @suryasocial on Instagram
       2. Post a photo of themselves with a Surya tote bag in a novel or original location
       3. Mention @suryasocial and tag #SpottedwithSurya

“At Surya, we recognize the importance of using sustainable materials whenever possible,” said Satya Tiwari, president, Surya. “With this in mind, we have designed our reusable tote bags to be both eye-catching and eco-friendly, providing a smart and stylish alternative to plastic shopping bags. We look forward to viewing the entries on Instagram and discovering the many places people are carrying Surya tote bags.”

Each photo counts as one entry, with a limit of two entries per Instagram account. Instagram users who submit a valid entry agree to allow Surya to use the photo as it pertains to the #SpottedwithSurya contest. Prizes shown reflect retail value of merchandise. The contest will close at midnight EST on June 20, 2014, and winners will be contacted via Instagram.

Launched in 2013, Surya’s Instagram page has more than 3,600 followers.

Monday, June 02, 2014

Great Predictions for ORGATEC 2014

New: "ORGATEC Space" and "ORGATEC Mobile" Competence Centres Six months ahead of the event, the forecast for ORGATEC 2014, which opens its doors at the Koelnmesse exhibition centre from 21 to 25 October, is outstanding. In the autumn, around 600 companies from almost 40 countries will present their novelties on exhibition space covering 105,000 gross square metres. According to the status in May, over 95 percent of the available stand space has already been booked and more than 500 companies have already confirmed their participation at the ORGATEC.

As such, the current booking rate is slightly higher than it was for the same period of the previous event. Moreover, many of the exhibitors have opted for bigger stands for their trade fair appearance compared to the ORGATEC 2012. Numerous national and international market leaders and industry players have already registered to exhibit including Actiu, Bene, Dauphin, Durable, Giroflex, Haworth, Interface, Interstuhl, Kokuyo, Komtech, König + Neurath, Nowy Styl, Nurus, Palmberg, Sedus, Tobias Grau, Unifor, Vitra and Wilkhahn.

Almost two thirds of the exhibiting companies come from abroad. There will be a particularly strong presence from companies from Italy, Spain, Sweden, Denmark, Turkey and France. "As such, the ORGATEC 2014 will be doing its role as the leading international trade fair for office & facility justice in all sectors," emphasised Katharina C. Hamma, Chief Operating Officer of Koelnmesse. "However, the ORGATEC not only offers solutions for the
classic office. The public spaces in the "Contract" sector are also under focus."

With its four exhibition zones "ORGATEC Office", "OGRATEC Contract", "ORGATEC Space" and "ORGATEC Mobile", the ORGATEC 2014 presents integrated solutions and overall concepts for everything connected with the office as a working and living space office. In Halls 6, 7, 8, 9, 10.2 and 11.2, leading national and international manufacturers from the furnishing, flooring, acoustic, light, media and conference technology sectors will present their ORGATEC 2014

Executive Board: Gerald Böse (President and Chief Executive Officer) Katharina C. Hamma Herbert Marner Chairman of the Supervisory Board: Mayor of the City of Cologne Jürgen Roters Place of business and (legal) domicile: place of jurisdiction: Cologne District Court Cologne, HRB 952 novelties to industry players from all over the world. The spectrum of trade visitors ranges from founders of start - ups, to dealers and decision-makers from medium sized companies, through to executives from the purchasing and personnel departments of major corporations. With almost 50 percent of the trade visitors coming from abroad, the ORGATEC also underscores its international significance.

Environment Furniture to Sponsor GM Architects

Environment Furniture will be sponsoring GM Architects at the 2014 Venice Biennale International Architecture Exhibition presenting its “Museum of Civilizations” project at the “Time Space Existence” Exhibition at the Venice’s San Marco district between June 7 and November 23, 2014.

GM Architects is a Lebanese architect and design firm specializing in high-end hotels and resorts as well as residential. Our paths crossed in 2013 when Environment worked closely with Galal Mahmoud on a large residential project in Greece on the island of Mykonos.

As Environment is deeply attached to the cause of preserving our natural heritage and contributing to make the design world more conscious of sustainable practices, the support of GM Architects’ participation at the Venice Biennale is a natural and perfect fit.