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Five design trends inspire Couristan’s 2018 collections

Fort Lee, N.J.—Inspiration comes from every corner of the world, according to Marlys Giordano, creative director at Couristan. For 2018, it’s all about incorporating color, global-inspired prints and recycled materials to provide a sense of well-traveled, trend-aligned design for the home.

In the company’s first-ever trend report, Giordano identifies five key trends that have inspired many of Coursitan’s new area rug collections, introduced at AmericasMart in Atlanta in early January, and further showcased during the Las Vegas Market.

Following are the five trends:

Shock value. This trend combines vibrant hues, utilized in unexpected applications, giving classic pieces an updated feel. The rugs that answer this trend blend bold motifs with of-the-moment color stories, resulting in classically-modern styles.

Work ethnic. Tribal in feel, this trend draws its inspiration from patterns found in Africa, India, Vietnam and beyond. Utilizing a warm palette, the colors balance beautifully with the neutral foundations found throughout this trend.

The naturals. Cultivated from organic elements and natural fibers, the naturals trend is clean and light—visualize a sunlit living room in whitewashed detail.

Wandering eye. Wanderlust is an ideal word to describe this trend, which is inspired by exotic locations like Morocco, Mexico and India. Wandering eye is influenced by visits to the souk and local markets to uncover all of their hidden treasures—vibrant fabrics, pierced lanterns, painted wood, carved talisman. Combining these elements, the feel is strikingly colorful, with bold geometric shapes and even bolder color palettes. Metallic accents, painted wood and recycled fabrics make this trend feel exotic and eclectic.

Hygee fresh. Hygge (pronounced “Hoo-Ga”) is the Danish art of happy living. It embodies everything that makes a home warm, cozy and inviting to friends and family. This trend incorporates a soft color palette and textural elements that exude a sense of inclusiveness and nesting.

Two area rugs inspired by these trends recently received Magnificent Carpet Awards for Best Design in the Hand Knotted/Flat Weave category (Karuna design from the newly introduced Om collection), as well as the Outdoor category (Toluca in Iris from the Xanadu collection). In addition, variations of these trends will be utilized across a newly developed offshoot—Couristan Rug Studio—set to launch later this year.

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Ceramic: New formats, designs emerge

February 19/26, 2018: Volume 33, Issue 18

By K.J. Quinn and Nicole Murray

 

Several of the industry’s major players have invested significant capital and resources into the development of next-generation tile flooring and wall products. Judging by the introductions making their respective debuts at various markets this winter, those investments are paying off.

On one hand, advances in digital printing are enabling producers to introduce head-turning formats and designs. At the same time, technological breakthroughs are helping suppliers improve performance and durability. “We are constantly evaluating our technologies, always looking for new ways to improve our product offerings,” said Gianni Mattioli, executive vice president, product and marketing, Dal-Tile. “Our digital printing techniques allow us to create tile that is so realistic, most customers cannot discern between what is tile and what is the natural surface we are imitating.”

Emerging formats such as large slabs are providing a broader canvas for many of these new designs. At Surfaces, Dal-Tile showcased its Panoramic porcelain series available in a 10 x 6 format. Then there’s the Industrial Panoramic series, which comes in four colors, and the Elemental Panoramic series, which comes in seven colors. Tiles for the new collections are available in varied thicknesses including 12mm for countertop applications and 6mm, which is more suitable for the floor or wall applications.

“We had to go bigger because people’s kitchen islands are growing larger and their surrounding counters have larger wrap-arounds,” said Roy Viana, Dal-Tile’s director of slab and natural stone. “Within this collection alone are color and texture options for just about any look to be achievable along with the durable and long-lasting benefits of porcelain.”

Another hot trend in porcelain tile is thinner looks. One of the most significant advantages of thin tile is the ability to be offered in much larger slabs than traditional tile, according to Barbara Haaksma, vice president of marketing, Emser Tile. “Grout lines are the bane of everyone’s existence in the industry. The monolithic look that comes with larger tiles allows for [rooms] to look spacious and, therefore, much more appealing.”

Vance Hunsucker, national sales manager, tile and stone, Shaw Floors, also cited the new tile’s ease of installation. “Gauged porcelain slabs take less time to install since they are manufactured in large pieces and don’t require the same intensity in terms of grouting and cutting that’s inherent with traditional tile formats.”

New designs in products such as porcelain slabs are offering even more incentives for homeowners and specifiers to choose tile for more than just showers and backsplashes. “We see convergence of designs appealing across both commercial and residential,” said David Koenig, vice president and general manager, Crossville Studios, the tile maker’s distribution division. “Porcelain slabs are starting to come into the market and will continue to gain market presence over the next two to three years.”

Aesthetic enhancements
High-definition printing is completely transforming the category, allowing manufacturers to supply consumers with high-quality floor tiles that resemble natural materials. Image resolution, observers say, is integral to creating products with superior characteristics in terms of detail, color fidelity and graphic designs.

The digital printing process has become so sophisticated that manufacturers are creating tiles that vary from piece to piece, much like the real products.

A case in point is Marazzi’s Urban District BRX collection, which closely resembles brick but is actually ceramic tile. Exuding the look of handcrafted bricks, the Urban District BRX line is inspired by 19th century Chicago brick, so realistic consumers will be hard pressed to tell the difference.

One natural look that remains strong in commercial and residential flooring is wood, thanks to the introduction of new graphics and sizes. Longer, wider formats in wood visuals are becoming increasingly popular, Shaw’s Hunsucker said, a trend that is in line with hardwood flooring. “There appears to be a transition away from 6 x 24 formats, which are quickly becoming more of a commodity product within the market.”

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Mannington in lockstep with design trends

Product development process feeds off cues in fashion, home decor

February 5/12, 2018: Volume 33, Issue 17

By Reginald Tucker

 

Salem, N.J.—At Mannington no product is brought to market without the requisite research, forethought and consideration of retailer needs and consumer trends and designs. FCNews got a glimpse of that extensive creative design and development process at work at the company’s in-house design showroom at its facilities here during a special Surfaces product preview event.

Presented here are some of the highlights across several product categories.

Adura Apex
Rooms that are prone to spills and wet messes can still have the look of wood (plus the exceptional performance of a luxury vinyl tile) with Mannington’s new Adura Max Apex. “Our Adura Max Apex floors deliver the look of real wood with formats that include wide widths and long lengths as well as variable widths and lengths,” said Joe Amato, vice president of residential styling. “This mix of renewed classic and on-trend designs capture the essence of real wood in ways we once could only imagine.”

Apex Adura debuts in six new colors: Aspen, a rich, refined European Oak design; Chart House, which conveys a shiplap design; Hilltop, a traditional reclaimed hickory look; Hudson, an urban chic visual; Napa, a character oak design with a classic European ceruse finish; and Spalted Wych Elm, a versatile design in 8 x 72-inch planks that easily transitions from traditional to contemporary settings.

Luxury vinyl sheet (LVS)
What’s old is new again, so the expression goes. Mannington’s Revive LVS collection gets three new looks that feature updated spins on classic and vintage looks, including floors with highly decorative surfaces.

“Mannington floors are designed to be lived on,” said Terry Marchetta, director, residential styling. “Our new sheet vinyl collection reflects that philosophy by marrying style with easy maintenance in our interpretations of on-trend looks in home design.”

Designs include: Oceana, a modern spin on classic Carrara marble; revive tapestry, a fresh take on classic decorative tile; Versailles, inspired by the well-traveled pathways of the iconic French palace for which it is named; Millcreek, inspired by reclaimed timber found in an old grain mill; and Patina, which delivers the authentic look of naturally aged concrete in easy-care LVS style.

Laminate
Mannington’s confidence in the mature but still relevant laminate category is reflected by its commitment to bringing retailers products that provide trade-up opportunities. The company aims to do just that with the latest additions to its Restoration Collection.

Highlights include: Hillside Hickory; already one of Mannington’s best-selling hickory plank designs, this line spins contemporary, creating a floor that works well in modern farmhouse and neutral Scandinavian settings, according to Cristen Del Bove, senior stylist. Then there’s Palace Plank, which combines the timeless beauty of wide plank European white oak with state-of-the art technology for a floor infused with authentic color, texture. Lastly, Palace Chevron is a look that dates back to 17th century France.

Hardwood
Mannington’s already extensive hardwood lineup gets a quintet new designs this spring. Additions include Carriage Oak, which captures the essence of worn painted wood from vintage carriage houses but in an updated, contemporary color palette; Foundry Hickory, which features subtle wire brushing enhanced by a triple-stained effect; Tribeca Oak, which offers a refined urban look with subtle wire brushing and multiple stain layers; Cider Mill Hickory, which combines the charm and nostalgia found in a vintage cider mill. A unique hand staining technique showcases the natural color variation, ranging from light to dark, on each plank; and Cider Mill Oak, which captures the spirit a of wood found in old mills.

 

 

 

 

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Mannington Select reinvigorates LVT with new visuals

Calhoun, Ga.—With new visuals in wood, stone and abstract patterns, Mannington Select LVT brings a tremendous selection of pattern options, a broader range of colors and compelling color coordination across product platforms. All of this, combined with a new premium construction, elevates Mannington Select to the pinnacle of the Mannington Commercial LVT product offering.

The collection offers a color update to existing wood patterns, including Chatham Oak, Princeton Cherry, Barnwood Plank and Mountain Pine. The design team also added new wood species such as a stylish and modern maple, a dark antique walnut, a distinguished classical walnut, and an oak option with softer graining available in less traditional, more neutral colors.

The resulting wood offering brings more choices informed by today’s trends—rustic looks as well as clean and modern aesthetics.

Mannington Select stone and abstract products were also updated. New stone visuals include a fine-grained, foliated slate that has a layer of pearl ink in the print to give depth. Crete features a soft linear striation with a unique grit-like texture. Among the abstracts, Celestial is a captivating linear pattern with warm and cool color play which highlights a pearlescent glow.

Select features an advancement of Mannington’s Quantum Guard Technology: Quantum Guard Elite. A multilayered technology, engineered to offer scratch resistance with best-in-class dimensional stability, advanced stain resistance, superior impact resistance and clean cutting during installation. Its easy, no-polish maintenance significantly reduces overall lifecycle cost and total cost of ownership.

The products are certified under FloorScore, approved as CA01350 compliant and recognized in LEED. Mannington Select LVT is manufactured in an ISO 9001 and 14001 registered manufacturing facility. With the addition of the new performance related features, Mannington Select offers enhanced warranties. Those new warranties include a limited 20-year commercial warranty and limited 20-year quantum guard elite warranty.

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Daltile Interior Design Scholarship entries showcase tile

Screen Shot 2017-10-30 at 9.36.12 AMDallas—Judging is currently underway for the sixth annual Daltile Interior Design Scholarship Competition, presented by the ASID Foundation. The designs entered by college students nationwide exemplify that tile is now widely used as a design element in today’s interior design world.

“Over the last five years, tile has emerged as a design element, whereas in the past, it was a utilitarian product,” said Shelly Halbert, director of product design for Dal-Tile and one of the judges for this year’s competition. “Five years ago we considered our Daltile products part of the tile industry. Today, they are part of the larger interior design industry.”

The 2017 competition challenged college students to reimagine the Booz Allen Hamilton Innovation Center in Washington, D.C., and to incorporate at least two Daltile products in their design vision. Daltile will award $27,500 in scholarships to aspiring interior design students who entered the competition from across the country. The panel of four judges is comprised of professionals from Daltile, OTJ Architects, Booz Allen Hamilton, and last year’s winner, Kristina Tribell of Abel Design Group. Winners will be announced on Nov. 15 at the Daltile Philadelphia Design Studio during NeoCon East 2017 in Philadelphia.

“While reviewing this year’s contest entries, I’ve noticed several consistencies among these young designers,” Halbert said. “As far as their overall style, student designs are generally falling into either modern or organic. Given free rein to use any two Daltile products in their concepts, the contestants overwhelmingly selected products that reflect many of today’s hottest trends in their tile choices—neutral colors and marble-looks, including white, gray and black, as well as traditional marbles in beige and brown. Lots of wood-look tiles, large format tiles and slabs, concrete looks and fabric-inspired tile products were also used. A few submissions showcase a blending of materials, such as wood-look and concrete-look tiles, creating eye-catching designs.”

For more information, visit daltiledesign.com.

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Gerflor celebrates legacy, future of original design

image006Chicago—This year, Gerflor USA marks two noteworthy milestones on its already impressive innovation timeline: the 80th anniversary of Mipolam, the original homogeneous sheet flooring, and the 70th anniversary of Taraflex, the original resilient sports flooring. Both are industry firsts in their respective product categories and are as valued by designers and specifiers today as they were when introduced to the market decades ago.

“Mipolam and Taraflex are just two of Gerflor’s industry firsts, and I’m confident they won’t be our last,” said Catherine del Vecchio, Gerflor USA’s senior director of marketing. “Our record of innovation demonstrates our ability to not only satisfy market needs, but to deliver products that consistently and continuously perform in new and improved ways. The quality of products like Mipolam and Taraflex have been tested for decades; they’ve evolved with the industry for 80 years and are the reference of specifications in their respective category.”

Since 1937, Mipolam has grown from a single product line to 15 different lines with more than 300 colors available worldwide. Gerflor will introduce its latest line later this year: Mipolam Classic, which will be available in tiles and sheet. The new line is a nod to the original pattern, which is an organic linear directional design, similar to a cirrus cloud.

Taraflex, first created in 1947, is the world’s most widely specified sports surface, and the same flooring selected for 10 consecutive Olympic Games through Gerflor’s partnerships with IHF and FIVB. Because of its safety and performance benefits, Taraflex is a leader in indoor sports flooring for U.S. schools, installed in more than 70,000 gymnasiums worldwide.

To celebrate its “original” achievements—including more than a dozen products and surface treatments—Gerflor USA is launching a contest to give away other coveted product icons from the interior design and fashion industries, such as a Hermes scarf, Louboutin shoes and an Anglepoise lamp. For each month (April through September) that a participant enters, he or she is automatically in the running to win the grand prize: a trip to Maison & Objet Paris with Gerflor in 2018. For more information and to enter, visit Gerflor USA.

 

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Ceramic: Latest designs reflect demand for larger formats

February 13/20, 2017: Volume 31, Number 18

By Nicole Murray

 

Screen Shot 2017-02-20 at 9.13.20 AMWhen it comes to emerging trends in tile, the prevailing theme seems to be the larger the format the better. Suppliers say bigger tiles translate into greater design options for the consumer.

“Larger tiles continue to grow in popularity, especially planks sized at 5 x 10,” said Barbara Haaksma, vice president of marketing at Emser Tile. “People are looking for fewer grout lines; in some cases, a monolithic look can make a room look bigger.”

However, new product formats require educating installers on how to properly lay the larger tiles on site. “A major challenge of larger planks is the installation process because it will now take two people to install as opposed to one,” Haaksma explained. “In the long run, you will need more people to lay fewer pieces so everything will balance itself out.”

Suppliers credit technological advances as the primary driver behind the trend toward larger sizes. So say experts like Lori Kleinert, director of Internet sales for LTL Home Products—parent company to Solid Floor, which assisted with the re-release of Solid Floor’s high-end design flooring set, the Chevron collection.

“The older version of the collection is much smaller,” Kleinert explained. “New techniques and advanced machinery allow us to produce bigger products in larger dimensions from natural materials. The process is very precise, and each day our abilities are getting better.”

Massimo Ballucchi, director of product design, Daltile, also attributes today’s advances to technological leaps. He said suppliers have been able to use tile to develop more comforting looks while still maintaining the material’s durability.

Screen Shot 2017-02-20 at 9.13.26 AM“Textures provide a simple way to add warmth to surroundings, and many of these offerings are scanned from actual fabric and engineered to be textured when touched,” Ballucchi explained. “From squares to decorative accents, new textured tile is designed for mixing colors and creating an eye-catching design. This is truly the new generation of textured tile.”

But it’s not just floors that are benefitting from these advancements. Larger formats are also finding their way on vertical surfaces. “People are getting tired of painted walls and want the mosaics, accents, subway and porcelain tiles—which is a great way to expand the business,” said Manny Llerena, director of sales and marketing, MS International (MSI). “It is architectural detail that sets you apart from your neighbor, and our Domino collection does just that. The series is indestructible and contains 3 x 6 wall tiles available in black, white or almond colors to give a style neutral kick that everyone is looking for.”

Haaksma agrees, adding wall tiles as architectural accents also allows manufacturers to differentiate themselves in much the same way they do with flooring. In Emser’s case, adding a three-dimensional twist via its Code series is one way to achieve this.

“Code is a collection of tiles that allows you to create your own aesthetics using different shapes, colors, surfaces and dimensions,” she explained. “By simply facing tiles in different directions, you can have a completely different design. It’s simply using material that has been around for a long time, just in a different way.”

Another hot trend when it comes to tile visuals is the replication of wood looks. In tile, these wood visuals can be manipulated so consumers can get the precise look they want—be it traditional or rustic—and still have a floor with the low maintenance and longevity of tile. “Wood continues to gain in popularity,” Haaksma said. “Wood planks can provide a variety of looks but they need a little upkeep and can last for a long time.”

As the development of realistic wood planks continues to improve, observers foresee an even greater variety of products coming down the pike. “Richer colors are going to emerge and new wood species will be included in product offerings,” Ballucchi said. “There is such a strong focus to create a product that looks authentic.”