Spring In High Point

For those of us in the design industry, we anxiously anticipate the Fall and Spring Market Weeks in High Point, NC. High Point Market is internationally known by interior designers, architects, furniture and fabric designers. For those of you that may not be familiar with High Point Market, allow me to enlighten you? High Point Market is the largest furnishings industry trade show in the WORLD! More than 75,000 people travel to High Point, North Carolina, every six months. It is the must-see event in home furnishings. It is comprised of 11.5 million square feet of products in 180 buildings and includes over 2000 exhibitors. Thousands of new products across all price points are introduced here in April and October of each year. The April Market for 2018 was held April 14-18. This is where trends for the home furnishings industry are set. This is where Joanna Gaines introduced her furniture line, Magnolia Home, in 2016. This year Property Brothers, Drew and Johnathon Scott were on hand to introduce new designs in their line of Scott Living. According to the brothers, they took their cues based on feedback from both retailers and consumers. You will find clean lines, neutral colors very similar to what you find on Property Brothers. Also in High Point this spring was Jeff Foxworthy. He was there to talk about his new collection with Manwah. According to Foxworthy, “I like people to be comfortable and we want to bring that to consumers for their homes.”

Based on what I have read and heard (I was unable to actually go this spring☹), here are several trends that you may see in home furnishings:

  1. Color is back! In all shades and tones. You will find color in furniture, accessories and art; everywhere you look. It does not have to be bold but adding a pop of color to any room adds elegance and sophistication.
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She brings the feel of being at the coast into her designs this spring. I love the light blue mixed with the green and cream. The area rug adds personality and spices up the room.

2. You will find both texture and natural materials used in home furnishings.

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This rug is hand-loomed in India and is 100% wool. It has a shaggy texture with Scandinavian inspired motifs.

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I LOVE this chandelier. It is not your normal starburst light. It captures the raw beauty of natural rock quartz in LED-illuminated  artisan blown glass.

3. We will continue to see clean lines but with sculptural elements for a layer of sophistication.

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The clean lines along with the trellis pattern bring simple beauty to this loveseat. The trellis pattern at the bottom is a laser cut wood panel with a white finish.

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The combination of glass with the stacked silver leaf rings add sculptural beauty with a sleek contemporary look.

  1. Gold is the new black. This is not your 1990s gold. It is sophisticated and luxurious.
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The combination of the crystal base and gold neck of this lamp would make a statement on any desk or table.

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The mixing of materials makes a sophisticated statement while bringing a modern look to rustic elements.

This is just a sample of all that could be seen at High Point Spring Market. I hope you enjoyed the tour.

Until next time, happy decorating!

Beth

The Truth About Houzz

Many of you may be familiar with Houzz. For those of you who are not, Houzz was created in 2010 by a husband and wife team, Alon and Tatarko Cohen. It is an online community about home improvement, design, landscape and architecture. You can find professionals to hire for a specific job you may need done or thousands of photos to give you inspiration for your next project. Thousands of designers are a part of this community. I have been for several years. However, in recent weeks, there have been things about Houzz that have come to light. Specifically, how they are using designers for their own profit.

A well respected interior designer and blogger, Laurel Bern, wrote a blog sharing the ugly truth about Houzz. She has done her research and you can read the complete blog here: https://laurelberninteriors.com/2018/03/18/ugly-truth-behind-pretty-interiors-houzz/.

I was quite appalled when I read her blog. Since then, several other designers have joined the chorus. A petition is now circulating and I have signed it.

To give you the Reader’s Digest version, Houzz has a Trade Program for designers. However, if you look carefully, designers only get a 3% discount and this discount has to be reinvested in Houzz. Also, the furniture they sell can usually be found several different times on the sight and at different prices. It can be very confusing. To be honest, I had noticed that I was finding the same item several places on their website and at different prices. They are also selling furniture on the sight but not necessarily giving credit to the manufacturer of that specific furniture. They are also using designer’s images and placing price tags on items in the photos WITHOUT their permission. Needless to say, this has the design community in an uproar!

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Now I would like to give you my personal experience with Houzz. As a designer, I created a profile and added projects to their site. As you can imagine, in Atlanta there are THOUSANDS of designers listed. In order to get noticed you must advertise with Houzz which means paying a hefty sum of money to get on the first, second or third pages. I made this mistake one time. I did choose to advertise with them and found that it was a waste of money. I did not receive any calls or get work from this. Then, last year I began getting emails and text messages from people saying that they found my profile on Houzz and wanted to hire me. As I asked questions and gained information I found that each time it was a scam! So, I reached out to Houzz to express my concern. I spoke with a very nice woman who apologized but basically said there was nothing that could be done. So, needless to say, my experience with Houzz has not been a good one. So, I have chosen to take down my profile and not order anything from them. I will no longer support Houzz in any way. Each designer is different and must make his/her own choices. This is mine. I have a difficult time supporting a company that is supposed to “care about” designers.

To add fuel to the fire, Alon Cohen made the statement:

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I’m sorry but WHAT??!!! I don’t know a designer that is not a business person. In this business we:

  • Are the salesperson

  • The market person

  • We determine and maintain the budget

  • The social media person

  • Write contracts

  • The interior designer

  • The blogger

  • The project manager

I found this statement so hurtful and very unprofessional. As a designer, I feel that it is my duty to keep those of you who care about design as much as I do informed of issues within the community. I know that many will continue to use Houzz and that is their decision but in good conscience I cannot support a platform that I find unethical. I would welcome your comments and thoughts.

Until next time, happy decorating!

Beth