Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Atlanta Market Update!

The Home Furnishings market at AmericasMart-Atlanta was 7 days packed with visiting beautiful showrooms, listening to prolific speakers (namely Thom Filicia who impressed me the most), and fun events. As promised, I want to recap some of what I saw. As a general overview, I have to say, the design theme for the start of the new decade was loud and clear to me…but, ironically, it is “SOFT and QUIET”! Most of the design oriented showrooms featured wispy neutrals like creams and taupes, soft textures, and classic subdued lines. It was evident, everywhere, that finding peace and serenity at home is going to be at the forefront of the design industry for a while. This makes me super happy, because as many of you already know, this aesthetic is my personal favorite.

As always, in lower price points and/or accent pieces and rugs, color was bright…Acidic greens paired with turquoise, fuchsia, orange and yellow. (I didn’t see as much purple at this show…If I did, it was muted or soft to blend with the grey-ish neutrals that were everywhere). Most of these brights were paired with chocolate or charcoal to make them pop in a sophisticated way.

Where metals are concerned, matte gold is still quite strong. Really, matte everything…pewter, bronze, silver, etc. The intense shine of chrome, so popular in the last decade, doesn’t necessarily lend itself to serenity. Matted, muted, delicate shimmers are much more conducive to creating a calming space and nicely compliment the other soft textures like cashmere, felt, and wool.

Simple lines, no matter what era of history inspired them, were also prevalent. From Ancient Greek to French Louis to Classic Modern, the furniture shapes are simple enough to stand the test of time. As people are more aware of their spending, it is smart for furniture manufacturers to create pieces that customers will want to invest in. We might be willing to spend a little more on something we think will have lasting quality and value.

My favorite showrooms are probably no surprise to you… jdouglas ( is a rep show room that features several lines that I love, namely, Aidan Gray ( and Arteriors ( ). Some people are getting a little tired of Arteriors because they have become somewhat saturated in the market. I still think their lighting and accessories are relevant and certainly stand the test of time.

Others demonstrating the softness that dominated the market were Peninsula Home ( ) and Zentique ( ).

In the rug category, French Accents Rugs & Tapestries was the clear winner. I wish I had a chance to take a photo of their showroom. Danny promised to send me some pics of their new products, but he hasn’t yet. For now, check out their website . Unfortunately, it doesn’t do their line justice at all. Their designs are STUNNING! Very fresh takes on classics, beautiful color combinations and gorgeous wools and silks. My favorites this show were from their Ikat collection. Yummy.

Art Imaage ( provided some of the best art I saw at this market. They are a wonderful trade-only resource for beautiful oils in all subject categories. Plus, the creative director, Rosa Martin, will act as your personal art consultant, searching for whatever you need for your client projects. ..”even a Picasso”!

Last, but not least…my favorite showroom deserves it’s very own blog post…It’s coming up next. I walked in and thought to myself, “I could live here.” So I sat down and interviewed Heather Antonelli, their new product designer/world-wide resourcer to find out about what’s in store for this innovative furniture and accessories source. It’s none other than…Bobo…Stay tuned!


  1. You beat me to it- Great article!!

  2. I attended too this year and one of my favorites is also J Douglas. The do everything so well. Love Bobo too!