“Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, in the street, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening.” ― Coco Chanel
Every year the hottest trends in both fashion and interior design are introduced first to commercial buyers and then to the consumers who will personally use them. Historically, fashion trends have always come first and then influenced furniture designs, but now many of the lines between the two are blurring due to tighter timelines. The romance between fashion and furniture continues today, but sometimes in new and unexpected ways.
Modern Influences on Both Fashion and Furniture
In home furnishings we often see trends in furniture colors and textures following fashion. But today there is less of a time gap between seasonal trends in clothing and furniture. Furniture used to lag clothing by a year or more. For instance, many years ago brown was in vogue for women’s fashions and it was a full year later that furniture finally followed suit. Now, when there is a new trend in women’s fashion and clothing colors, at the next major interior design show we are seeing it appear immediately in home furnishings. This is truly a function of how everyone communicates in real time in the modern world. All trends move faster and that means both fashion and furniture have caught up to each other.
For the consumer who is redecorating a home, look to the fashion runways for clues as to what styles, colors and designs will be big in furnishings during the next season. Pay attention to designer blogs and even social sites, such as Pinterest or Houzz, both of which provide a timely glimpse into the hottest trends, according to consumer tastes.
More Blurring of the Lines: Fashion Designers with Furniture Collections
Of course, there is an even greater connection between fashion and furnishings due to the many famous fashion designers who have tried their hand at designing furniture collections – some successfully and others not so much.
Perhaps the greatest example is Ottavio Missoni (1921 – 2013). Moving laterally from his iconic clothing design company launched in 1953, Missoni added a home furnishings collection to his American empire in April of 2012, although the company had been making furniture fabrics since 1981. Missoni Home focuses largely on bold patterns, bright colors and interesting textiles, much the same as the company’s fashion line, and includes accent pieces, lighting and pillows. Missoni Home had a strong presence at this year’s Milan Design Week show. I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Missoni in person some 20 years ago in Italy, and he had already been dabbling in interior furnishings for over a quarter of a century. He is one designer who exemplified the creativity that seamlessly bridges both fashion and interior furnishings, notably through the finely knit fabrics for which the Missoni name is famous.
There are many other fashion designers who have started a line of interior designs that were met with rather lukewarm responses from the critics, and the public. Notable among them are Giorgio Armani and Calvin Klein. Although we carry Calvin Klein area rugs at Lawrance and the brand’s bed linens are available in several retail chains, the home furnishings line was never really embraced by critics.
When it comes to good design, there is no single industry that holds all the cards. What becomes a hot trend for clothing often circumvents boundaries to appear at the next interior design show. Does that mean you must redecorate your home every season to keep up with trends? Of course it is more expensive to replace a sofa than it is to buy a new coat so it would be unreasonable to expect any home to change with each season. That’s why at Lawrance we focus on providing timeless designs while keeping up with the latest trends shown in Milan each year. We leave it up to you to decide whether your interior space needs an entire overhaul, or perhaps just a new piece or two to keep things fresh.