18 May 2024, 20:55
By Furniture News Feb 10, 2015

Heimtextil distinguished by future-oriented topics and design

With an increase of around three percent in visitor numbers, Heimtextil 2015 in Frankfurt am Main once again ensured the new furnishing season got off to a successful start. 68,000 trade visitors were very pleased with the high quality of the products and designs, and kept exhibitors busy throughout the fair. The 2,759 exhibitors from 68 countries were no less delighted with the orders placed by buyers. The further increase in the level of internationality – from 87 to 88 percent on the exhibitor side and from 67 to 68 percent on the visitor side – also ranks as a success factor for the trade fair. “This has been the most successful Heimtextil for many years. The significant increase in the number of affluent buyers once again demonstrates the high power of attraction exercised by our exhibitors and their products”, says Detlef Braun, member of the executive board of Messe Frankfurt.

Martin Auerbach, director of the Association of the German Home Textile Industry, says: “As the world’s biggest meeting place for the sector, Heimtextil is for us the most important indicator for the latest subjects, challenges and opinions in the worldwide market for home textiles. At the fair, the German home-textile industry gave a clear demonstration of the flexibility, energy and creativity with which it is reacting to the massive changes and challenges in the international market. At the same time, our discussions with buyers, designers, artisans and retailers from all around the globe were once again an incentive and a source of inspiration.”

Claus Anstoetz, MD of the Jab Anstoetz Group, says: “As in the past, this year’s Heimtextil generated numerous potential customers and orders for Gardisette and Jab Anstoetz Systems. The ambience at the fair was extremely good.”

At the beginning of the new furnishing season, this year’s Heimtextil was able to boast the fifth increase running in the number of exhibitors and thus send positive signals to the sector. The fact that Heimtextil is an important opening event, especially for top buyers, was underscored by Patric Gehlhaus, category manager of Galeria Kaufhof/Metro Group: “Heimtextil is characterised by the large number of national and international companies taking part, and the high quality of the products on show. We not only make good use of the fair for trend scouting and finding innovations but also place orders. At present, much revolves around the subjects of sustainably and customer well-being. However, holistic home concepts and implementation at the point of sale are also focal points. Ethnic design and pastel shades are set to be a major trend for our stores this year.”

Pedro Hernando Helguero, manager of the House and Home Textiles division of El Corte Inglés, Spain, says: “Anyone wanting to find a huge spectrum of first-class products must come to Heimtextil in Frankfurt am Main. We come with a big team every year and were once again extremely taken with the multi-faceted range to be seen.”

The good figures were also confirmed by the very positive results of both the visitor and exhibitor polls. 95 percent of all visitors achieved their goals for the fair (an increase of two percent compared to 2014), which underscores the high standard of the companies exhibiting at Heimtextil. Confirming this, Alessandra Ferretti, export manager of Jannelli & Volpi, Italy, says: “It was a wonderful fair. The visitors included all the right people and we registered more definitive business contacts than anywhere else. The echo from all parts of the world has been fantastic, especially to our new Armani collection.”

Ann Thomson-Krol of the UK Fashion & Textile Association, which took part in Heimtextil with 86 British companies, says: “All were very pleased with the fair. Great Britain concentrates on creative and technical aspects of the industry and primarily presented decorative and upholstery fabrics. Heimtextil is the world’s leading trade fair for the sector, which means a big national pavilion is important for our association. The visitor standard and the purchasing power were fantastic. It is also apparent that the type of visitor is changing – away from individual visitors to groups of visitors. Our target regions continue to be the USA, Europe and Japan. This year, more Japanese visitors came to our exhibition stand to see our designs. The first day was particularly good in terms of designers. Naturally, Great Britain will be back again in 2016 with, perhaps, even more exhibition space.”

There were particularly large increases in the number of European visitors from Great Britain, Italy and Spain. From the Arabian Peninsula, more visitors came from Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. An increased number of visitors also made their way to Frankfurt from overseas nations, such as Japan and the USA. As expected, there was a decline in the visitor numbers from the Ukraine and Russia.

The new Heimtextil ‘Theme Park’ in Hall 4.0 proved to be a highly popular highlight – in the heart of the fair: “A clear and good trend show”, says Soizic Gilibert, proprietor and designer of Cosmic Zoo design studio from France. “I was able to gain valuable inspiration from the installations. Particularly interesting for me were the ethnic themes and the wide range of exhibitor fabrics.” In addition to the main parts, such as the ‘Material Gallery’ and the ‘Colour Pavilion’, particular interest was shown in the themed installations, such as the seven-metre high foot spa for the ‘hospitality’ segment and a 3D printer for making carpets in the ‘Technology Lab’. Virtual-reality glasses for the retail sector also offered new perspectives by showing ways in which retailers can present textiles virtually and thus create a symbiosis between online and offline sales.

“The aim of Heimtextil was to show the trends in a more comprehensible way”, says Anne Marie Commandeur of stijlinstituut Amsterdam, explaining the ‘Theme Park’ concept. The designer was responsible for the presentation of this year’s trend forecasts, which were prepared in advance of the fair by a Trendtable of renowned design agencies from six countries. “The trends should be suitable for use by different target groups and appeal to as many visitors as possible. We believe we achieved this goal and are delighted that the ‘Heimtextil Theme Park’ was so successful”, added Anne Marie Commandeur. “We are overjoyed that the ‘Heimtextil Theme Park’ has been such a great success. In fact, the ‘Theme Park' proved to be a valuable source of inspiration for the many different visitor target groups at the fair."

Continuing, Anne Marie Commandeur says: “Retailers and decorators found specific examples of how the latest textiles can be used and presented in a variety of settings, e.g., hotel rooms, living rooms and shop windows. In particular, journalists, bloggers and designers took advantage of the chance to speak with the designers working and exhibiting in the ‘Theme Park’. Architects were fascinated by the proportions and the design of the rooms, and how exhibitor products could be used as part of the architecture. Buyers had the opportunity to look through a selection of 1,500 innovative fabrics that were spread around the entire ‘Theme Park’.

The premium products in Hall 11 were a source of exclusiveness, structure and orientation at Heimtextil 2015. The exhibitors in this hall made presentations and were able to reach their target group. “This was the first time we have shown our new product line, ‘CF by Christian Fischbacher’ at a fair”, explained Sonja Gfeller, MD of Bed Linen, Christian Fischbacher Co. AG. “This enabled us to attract many visitors who like this style. Indeed, many of them spontaneously took photos of our stand, which was great. The models used to show the uncomplicated joie de vivre of ‘CF by Christian Fischbacher’ proved very popular. Bert Sander, CEO of Sander GmbH & Co.KG, was no less pleased: “Four days at Heimtextil – enough material for a whole year! It is almost impossible to see all of the fantastic products at the fair. However, the small part I was able to see once again provided more than enough motivation and inspiration for the coming year. Against this background, the increased number of visitors is hardly surprising and I would advise anyone in the business to reserve at least two days for their visit, to benefit fully from the leading international trade fair for our sector.”

“This was our first time at Heimtextil, which we found to be a fair of the highest standard”, explained Frohstoff CEO Jörg Vogt. Continuing, he says: “Here, business is conducted in a very international environment. We welcomed visitors from Spain, the Benelux countries, Great Britain, Scandinavia and Germany, the largest proportion of them wholesalers and buyers from department-store chains.” KAS and David Fussenegger also reported on the fair in positive terms. Karen David, MD of KAS Australia, says: “It was a good fair. The visitors came from all over the world and the standard was very high, too.”

As in the past, Heimtextil 2015 was also characterised by a wide-ranging programme aimed at the retail trade and interior decorators, which included not only the outstanding ‘Heimtextil Insider’ and ‘Bed’n Excellence’ visitor programmes but also numerous lectures, guided tours for visitors, award ceremonies and trend areas. In Hall 3.0, the Decoteam showed practical examples for decorating with the latest textiles. Birgit Schlenker of Decoteam was very pleased with the positive echo: “For us, the fair has been extremely good. We presented two trend themes, ‘Urban Chic’ and ‘Country Chic’, which proved to be very popular. The absolute highlight was our Trend Workshop, which gave visitors the chance to learn about the trends at the world’s biggest trade fair for the home-textile sector and put them straight into practice when they get home. We had an amazing crowd of visitors and the mood was super!”

At Webchance Academy 2.0, visitors could choose from a seminar and lecture programme covering the subjects of online business and marketing. The lectures ranged from a general introduction for e-commerce newcomers to detailed discussions for retailers with prior knowledge.
Heike Fritsche, director of the German Interior Decoration Association (Zentralverband Raum und Ausstattung – ZVR), underscored the significance of Heimtextil for the interior-decoration sector: “Thanks to its unrivalled range of products, Heimtextil is a must for the interior-decoration sector. As at previous editions of the fair, we welcomed many visitors wanting to find out more about the vital subjects of quality, service and sustainability to our exhibition stand in Hall 5.1. A special highlight for our association was the première of the Knowledge Forum, a new lecture platform for expertise and discussion, which we initiated in cooperation with the German Association of Sworn Experts for Interior Decoration (Bundesverband der vereidigten Sachverständigen für Raum und Ausstattung e.V. – BSR). The Forum will be continued with different themes in the future. Moreover, our location at Heimtextil was the perfect setting for sun-protection systems.”

Around 200 international studios presented their latest ideas at ‘Design Live’ in Hall 4.2, and once again formed one of the world’s biggest platforms for textile design. All profited from the central position of the exhibition hall and from the great international interest in the unrivalled spectrum of designs to be seen. Shohreh, proprietor and designer of Shohreh Textildesign, was very pleased with the visitor response and the course of business at the fair: “The concept for this hall is right. My new designs are primarily graphic, floral and structural, and they were well received. Some customers even spoke to me during the setting-up phase. This year, there were fewer customers from Russia. Most came from Japan, China, the USA, Great Britain, the Benelux countries and Germany.”

Start-ups and young designers presented product ideas by the coming generation of designers in the ‘New & Next’ area of Heimtextil 2015. Their home collections in Halls 9.0 and 11 were distinguished by fresh ideas and original creations. In this connection, some companies are also using sustainable methods of production.

The boom in the digital-printing segment continues unabated with the quota for digital textile printing expected to rise to five percent by 2017. In view of this, more room was made available for the subject at Heimtextil 2015. Thus, key players such as Epson Europe and Hewlett Packard, were located in an eye-catching, future-oriented setting in Hall 4.0 – in the heart of the Exhibition Centre and in the immediate vicinity of the new ‘Theme Park’ trend area. The product presentations by the various exhibitors were supplemented by the European Digital Textile Conference, which was held for the second time in cooperation with WTiN (World Textile Information Network).

Sustainability is nowadays an integral aspect of the products and services at Heimtextil. Both exhibitors and visitors appreciate the orientation aids provided, such as the ‘Green Directory’ and the ‘Eco Leaves’ on selected exhibitions stands, which help them find products with an ecological background. Heimtextil has also been making its own contribution to sustainability for many years via special presentations, lectures, a variety of publications and partnerships and a competition for newcomers to the sector. The ‘Young Creations Award: Upcycling’ spotlights an important subject in the modern textile and fashion industry and was given at Heimtextil 2015 for the third time to young creative personalities and their original upcycling objects for the interior. Heimtextil visitors could see the most creative ideas at a special exhibition in Hall 4.2. This year, the spectrum of activities oriented towards sustainability at Heimtextil was supplemented by the ‘Green Village’, a platform for label organisations, auditors and interest groups in this segment. The ‘Green Village’ provided visitors with information and brought greater transparency to the label landscape.

This year, the Heimtextil Saturday in downtown Frankfurt was once again a special occasion for consumers interested in the latest trends and designs of the international furnishing and home-textile sector. For ‘Heimtextil goes City’ brings highlights of the world’s biggest trade fair for home and contract textiles to selected retail outlets and special locations. A total of 24 shops, galleries and public institutes in Frankfurt am Main presented the latest trends of the home and household-textile sector. More than 2,000 consumers came for the showcases – no less than 500 of them for the ‘Home dreams to touch’ exhibition at the DialogMuseum where, as part of a ‘Haptic Award’, they were called upon to choose the best fabric to touch. The clear winner out of the numerous fabrics entered for the award was ‘Atlas Plissé’, a new product from the current Christian Fischbacher collection.

Next year’s Heimtextil will begin and end a day earlier, on the Tuesday and Friday respectively. With this change, the Heimtextil management is complying with the wishes of many exhibitors and visitors.

The next Heimtextil in Frankfurt am Main will take place from Tuesday 12th January to Friday 15th January 2016.

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