We spent last week in Guangzhou, China, at the China International Furniture Fair (CIFF), the largest expo in China for home furnishings. While there, we were able to get a glimpse of upcoming trends from the Asian markets. This year’s offerings placed an emphasis on small space living, and utilizing hidden aspects of well designed furniture. Here are some of our favorites:
1. New takes on futons.
The hard metal frames and uncomfortable, thin mattresses of the past were nowhere to be seen at CIFF. In their place were soft, upholstered chairs that transformed into beds by either pulling down the backrest to reveal a level sleeping space, or by unfolding the seat to create a soft, foam mattress.
2. Marble accents on accent pieces.
Marble is the new granite these days, it seems. It’s also showing up on accent furniture in understated ways – the inside of a table leg, a block along the front of a console, the top of a table. It adds a classy touch without being overpowering or turning a home into something reminiscent of a Parthenon.
3. Classy matte and clear plastic.
Plastic used to be reserved for lawn and children’s seating. Now, with new finishes and designs, it is made classy enough for the modern dining table, office, and even as living room accent pieces. And while acrylic chairs are not anything new, they’ve been revamped to include latticework and geometrical shapes to keep the trend going.
4. Coated metals.
Chrome, powder coated, antiqued, and brushed metal finishes took a back seat to gleaming white coated metal tables, consoles, bedroom sets, and chairs.
We of course enjoyed our stay in China, and were amazed with all there was to do and see!