Feast for the eyes

Colour was the overwhelmingly dominant theme of this year’s collections of interior fabrics and wallcoverings at Heimtextil in Frankfurt. Cheerful and cozy, moody and coy, the entire spectrum was on display. Particularly popular were light greens, flamingo and water-blue, often accompanied, as a warmer contrast, by honey, copper and coral. The more expensive the material, the more the design involved darker background colours like anthracite, midnight blue or mocha brown. The range of patterns from floral to abstract is greater than ever before, and in their detail and gradations demonstrate the impressive advancements digital printing are continually making.

1-KARIM’S IN YOUR BATHROOM When Karim Rashid gets his hands on something, sometimes it’s best to let him explain it. His Kolor my World collection for Grund “explores how our contemporary physical world can be soft, human and pleasurable yet be inspired from our digital world. The myriad of patterns and forms are all proposals for a more colorful, more energetic fulgent physical world that resonates with our data-driven age.” Okaaaaay…  grund.cz

2-WON’T LET THE SUN GO DOWN ON YOU Sunlight is great: no one argues that it isn’t. But with the push for interiors that allow more and more sunlight in means innovations need to be made to control side effects like glare and heat gain. The Swiss textile company Création Baumann debuted just such an innovation with its Metal Base Collection, which integrates a thin layer of metal – such as brass, copper, aluminium or steel – on the reverse of curtain fabrics, thereby increasing reflection and reducing heat ingress.  creationbaumann.com

3-NORDIC FUN Studio Kelkka is a Finnish design group specializing in pattern and surface design, and its booth at Heimtextil radiated whimsy and humour, draped as it was in several of its lines including three new collections, one of which is the aptly named Wonderful Calm.  studiokelkka.com

4-WAY TO GO ColourTec Glow by Architects Paper (a brand of A.S. Création Tapeten) is a phosphorescent wallpaper that has been treated with a hydrophobic lotus-effect coating – a fancy way of saying this glow-in-the-dark novelty can be painted over in a variety of varnishes or colour schemes without loss of function. The long-lasting phosphorescent pigments are stimulated by either natural or artificial light, which means escape route signposts can be illuminated without the need for emergency power.  architects-paper.com

5-NO SUBTLETY HERE STOF is a French interior decor brand whose massive Heimtextil booths typically look like the colour spectrum had an orgasm. While a little overwhelming to the visual senses (and not exactly high design), STOF is nevertheless  a good indicator of what the popular motifs will be in European home decor in the coming seasons. This year, it’s all about flowery and vibrant patterns, for both indoors and out.  stof.fr

6-NOBLESSE OBLIGE The Soroma Stars material by Skai (part of the Hornschuch Group) is reminiscent of the style of French and English royal houses of the 17th and 18th centuries. Dead straight, diagonal quilted seams cross each other to create regular rhombi. The material looks quilted, but is the result of an innovative embossing process that gives a fine shimmer when used as either upholstery or wallcovering.  hornschuch.com

7-ONE MORE CUP The German company Erismann came to the fair armed with a total of 14 new wallpaper collections, including seven brand-new styles. The à la maison collection stood out with lively, fresh motifs for kitchens and bathrooms inspired by coffee aromas, the ocean and the seaside, injecting a kitschy graphic quality into the home.  erismann.de

8-SWEET DREAMS Festival is a new collection by Belgian firm Wind that calls to mind feelings of lightness, colour and gaiety. Coming in two varieties, Twist (right) is a multi-coloured stripe that matches well with Blues (left) and its eye-catching floral embroidery.  wind.be

9-SEE THE LIGHT Marburg Wallcoverings has been experimenting with light and wallpaper for some time, with varying degrees of success. Its newest offering on this front is Art Luminaire, which uses a technique of cladding fine plastic threads to a non-woven wallcovering. The fibres, longer than the actual length of the wallcovering, end in a bundled source of light, feeding light into them. The technical explanations are boring, but the effect is dazzling.  marburg.com

10-ARE YOU READY TO ROCK? Amsterdam-based designer Ulf Moritz loves to experiment with materials, and for his new Imagination collection for Marburg, he picked an intriguing new toy to play with: basalt yarn. To fashion the yarns, basalt rocks are molten and hundreds of yarns pulled out of the melted mass; because basalt yarn is non-flammable and very flexible, it is used in the automotive industry and ship building. In this case, the basalt yarn makes the wallcoverings appear valuable and heavy.  marburg.com