Maison & Objet, the twice-annual show in Paris, was once again bursting with inspired design for the residential market. The show buzzed with more than 80,000 visitors, 3,200 international brands and 3,000 press attendees.
As Benjamin Moore & Co.'s senior manager of commercial and residential design, Sonu Mathew was our eyes and ears at the event, bringing back this report on ideas and inspirations that set the tone for the year.
This show, open exclusively to the trade, represents ideas that are still on their way to the North American market. Color trends were back to basics, with black and white with splashes of red making a strong appearance. Greens in any tone, tint and shade were also prevalent – from electric green on tableware to soft, natural greens.
Nature made a strong appearance in many ways – first, in the form of colors, from the raw, unfinished browns of wood to the patinas of copper to the translucent variation of animal horns. Designers took a page from nature’s book as they shaped tabletop objects, lighting and fabrics like freeflowing vegetal forms. Also, an element of delicacy was prevalent throughout the show. Intricate, tailored details appeared in the patterns and texture in home accessories, as well as in bedding and fashion design.
The world of tabletop design was dominated by bold colors, diamond sparkle and unique forms. Traditional tableware took on a progressive attitude as artisan styles were re-colored in bright, bold new palettes. Diamond-shaped glass and crystal-encrusted serviceware added shine. Angular or curvilinear, a variety of defined shapes were used to create layering effects in table settings.
As in years past, ancient and vintage influences spanning eras and geography remained strong. Authentic ethnic artifacts, such as a pair of ancient peacock statues removed from an Indian palace, offered rich color with their bronze, copper and patina tones.
Discovering some strong and symbolic themes at the show that echo the direction we see in design is helpful in setting the tone for the year. Salone Internazionale del Mobile in Milan undoubtedly will hold some new discoveries for us in April, and I am thrilled to see that design continues to be vibrant and alive in Paris!