This year the International Furniture Fair was held in Guangzhou, bringing together thousands of players in the furniture industry from all over the world. Buyers and suppliers gathered to one the years largest events for the furniture industry.
Some of the largest design houses like Milano and Ashley Homes were there.
The focus was design, functionality and affordable yet quality luxury. With only 4 days and 750 000 Sqm's worth of area space all things furniture, we needed planning and a quick start.
In terms of priority, the sofa hall was our first stop. This is a very competitive segment for South Africans, so it was important to get a head start and cover all the latest designs.
Even though we have built relationships and have key suppliers, we have to keep looking and see whats new in the market that can bring comfort, quality and affordability to our customers, so we are continually searching the latest trends and sometimes that means building new relationships with new suppliers.
What we noticed this year, that there were 3 key themes:
Electronic reclining is quite common these days, electronic headrests not so much. It seems that's about to change and it will be a welcome addition. The convenience of adjusting your headrest while seated at the touch of a finger will bring more comfort to the end user.
Lounge suites with adjustable back rests have been around, but its safe to say that this season its trending in a big way. Just push the backrest back and now you have a daybed function on your lounge suite, perfect for chilling with your feet up when spending long hours on the couch.
Finally a new option to PVC and PU, air leather is much more durable, does not peel and a better quality than your standard everyday PU. This fabric will make lounge suites more affordable while enhancing the quality.
Moving on too dining, many options on marble were on display, as well as mid-century wooden tables, not so much our style so we skipped pass that very quickly. We preferred to stick our current range of Italian Dining Sets, which we find our customers like and see the value in them.
When it came to beds, there was nothing we felt brings value to our customers, and besides most of the designs were either outdated or ultra-mod, and even if we went with the ultra-mod, there was no value in the price. Instead we decided to stick with our current theme of beds and refresh with new colors and new designs with similar characteristics to what we already have.
Then it was a quick whiz through the middle eastern and classic styles and we called it a day, 1 day before the fair ended.
All in all, this year was not the best in terms of innovation, in fact it was a bit underwhelming compared to previous years, although one of the few gems we found for our customers were the chaise convertible back rest sofa's which we feel will bring comfort and value to our customers, this new range along with our refreshing new bed designs will be arriving soon, so watch this space...
Thank you for taking the time out to read, hope you found this blog interesting, any comments or question can be asked below in the comments sections. The suggestions and feedback of our customers is very important to us and we value your input.
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