Heimtex shows updated look

Carole Sloan, December 17, 2001

It's a brand new Heimtextil, with new buildings and programs designed for the decorative fabrics and home textiles businesses of the 21st century.

Among the firsts for Heimtextil 2002 next month will be:

  • The debut of Messe Frankfurt's ultra-modern Hall 3;

  • The debut of the Forum, which now will be the home for the presentation of trends;

  • The opening of Heimtextil for the first time to consumers on Sunday in a limited number of halls—3.0, 3.1, 5.1, 6.1 and 8.0;

  • An expanded number of trend and product exhibits and information programs, including the Sleep School, where all elements involving a good night's sleep are identified, and Sensory Change, a multi-sensory sensory offering of the newest in home fashions;

  • An across-the-board renaming of the product categories into 10 labels to simplify the identity challenge: Sleep and Dream; Kitchen and Culture; Fresh and Splash; Wall and Decor; Deco and Style; Floor and More; Sun and Shadow; Sit and Feel; Atelier and Design; and Service and Technology;

  • The switch of the decorative fabric, upholstery fabric and curtain fabric sectors from Halls 8, 9, and 10 with their counterparts in home textiles, the result of long-time requests for more space from the fabric sectors;

  • A new area called Contract and Creation for the non-residential market.

The expanded exhibition center, now with more than 320,000 square meters of space and more than three thousand exhibitors, is about 10 percent larger than it has been.

But Heimtextil will not have a partner country in 2002.

The Partner Country program in effect since 1994, will take a break, according to Geert Bottger, director of textile fairs for Messe Frankfurt, the organizer of Heimtextil, the result of needing to focus on all the details involved in the expansive changes for the 2002 event.

"We have to focus our resources in terms of logistics and communications on making these innovations work," Bottger explained. "Without doubt, the next Heimtextil will be one of the most exciting ever because nothing will be the same as it was."

The Partner Country program began with the United States in 1994 and has included Belgium, Italy, Great Britain, India, Spain, Portugal and Switzerland. The concept, Bottger added, will be reintroduced when "these numerous innovations have become established and accepted."

The Heimtextil trend presentation, a tradition for the show, predicts "mix is the 'in' thing. Absolutely anything goes."

In the trend presentation, developed by trend researcher Gunnar Frank, based in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, picked blue, gold, petrol, red and olive mixing with neutral grays and blacks and a vibrant green and blue.

The trends themselves, Gunnar reported, are Planet Vision, a high-tech, contemporary and sporty style; Casino Royale, a classical, romantic and masculine mood used in untraditional ways, but with a nostalgic effect; and Shock Attack, a lively, humorous and ultra-youthful style that is fun-oriented but very expensive.

Frank summed up the moods: "The new style does not necessarily have to be beautiful but it must be individual, with games the number-one inspiration."

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