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All lights are green for imm cologne 2015

vitra at imm cologne 2014
vitra at imm cologne 2014

Stylish, modern and inspiring: in January 2015, imm Cologne will once again be the trendsetter for the interior design industry and the place to be for visitors from around the world. As the year’s first trade show for interior design, imm cologne showcases contemporary and future trends for the next season and inspires with high-class exhibitors and events.

Green Design: More than just a marketing trend

„Sustainability“ is a frequently discussed topic. But there is more to this buzzword than just a marketing trend. Sustainability starts with the first sketch of a product and continues through the entire process of product development. Most important in terms of sustainability is the possibility to use the product and its components beyond its expiry date. An efficient design enables the economical usage of materials and energy as well as reasonable logistics and a production that allows recycling.

Half-timbered houses are a great example for sustainable design. Photo: H.D.Volz/
Half-timbered houses are a great example for sustainable design. Photo: H.D.Volz/

The idea of sustainable products is not new, it just became more relevant due to rising energy costs and the shortage of resources. Decades ago people already used materials that are considered sustainable products nowadays. A traditional half-timbered house for example is mainly made of „green“ materials such as wood and clay. Modern buildings use this old-school principle again and are build of wood and are insulated with cellulose materials such as scrap paper. This way yesterday’s newspaper caters for a cozy and warm home in the wintertime.

Half-timbered houses are a great example for sustainable design. Photo: H.D.Volz/
Half-timbered houses are a great example for sustainable design. Photo: H.D.Volz/

More and more one can find furniture made of old pallets and wooden cases: After thousands of kilometers on the road they are of no use any more for transportation and would usually be thrown away. When cleverly refurbished and combined they make new seating furniture, tables or even wardrobes.

Old pallets can be turned into comfy furniture. Photo: PetraBork/
Old pallets can be turned into comfy furniture. Photo: PetraBork/

Amongst materials for patios a new sort of Wood-Plastic-Composites (WPC) became popular. WPC products such as floorboards and wall cladding are made of sawdust, which is waste from industrial furniture production, and high-quality plastics.

WPC, a product made of sawdust and plastics. Due to its characteristics it has become an environmentally friendly alternative to tropical wood. photo: SG/
WPC, a product made of sawdust and plastics. Due to its characteristics it has become an environmentally friendly alternative to tropical wood. photo: SG/

Due to its great durability WPC products became a competitive environmentally friendly alternative for tropical wood. Once WPC products are worn out they can be recycled and new WPC products can be build out of the recycled material. In the end they can also be used as a source of energy through burning since they are made of up to 90 percent wood.

Nowadays we can find many sustainable and at the same time high-quality products for daily use, which enable a more environmentally friendly lifestyle through conscious consumption.


About the author:

Serkan of Casando
Serkan of Casando

Serkan is author for the online magazine casando. It is his priority to make topics about home and garden as interesting and readable as possible. Originally a journalist for printed media he manages to deliver relevant information for his online audience as well since he is very experienced with digital media. For him it is very important that a living and workspace is cozy. Therefore his favorite material is wood.

Luca Nichetto’s “Das Haus” at the imm cologne 2013 creates a view of the greenery

Foto: Andreas Körner, Koelnmesse

Following London design team Doshi Levien’s successful launch of the new design event at the imm cologne 2012, the trade fair has nominated designer Luca Nichetto as its Guest of Honour for “Das Haus – Interiors on Stage 2013”. In his design, the Venetian focuses on solutions that are intended to enable occupants to live in direct contact with the plant world.

Pure Textile at imm cologne: Luxuriating in fabrics

A completely new attraction at imm cologne in 2011 will be the textile show Pure Textile in Hall 11, where exclusive textile designers including Création Baumann, Kinnasand, Zimmer + Rohde and Nya Nordiska will be presenting their latest fabric creations and carpets.

Ralph Anstoetz, managing partner of JAB Anstoetz in Bielefeld, Germany, is strengthening his presence in Cologne as a result of this new feature: “Given our positive experience at last year’s furnishing fair in Cologne, and the fact that even more top textile designers have decided to come to imm, this year we will also present our subsidiaries Chivasso and Soleil Bleu par Wellmann.” The other exhibitors in the Pure Textile segment are also preparing intensively for the Cologne show – and planning to penetrate new sales markets.

Patricia Urquiola and Harald Gründl talking about the Interior Trends 2011

Patricia Urquiola
Patricia Urquiola, member of the imm cologne 2011 trend board. (photo: E15)

“Our task was to take a look at the various forms in which the trends are expressed,” says the Spanish designer Patricia Urquiola concerning the work of the imm cologne 2011 Trend Board. She considers this a pioneering development. “We have to realize that today there are completely different perspectives on what people consider innovative,” she says. “Sometimes a new interpretation of something old or a particularly simple and intelligent production method is much more innovative than a new material or an innovative technology. The concept of innovation is changing. In my opinion, it’s closely connected with people’s needs and with the way we use objects.”

Dirk-Uwe Klaas, Association of the German Furniture Industry, on consumers’ changing mentality

1furniture_exportThe average German only replaces his sofa with a new one every 8-12 years. Don’t you sometimes wish there was a scrapping incentive for furniture too?
We in the furniture industry aren’t calling for subsidies – we just want equal treatment for all sectors. Instead of getting people to scrap their cars, the politicians ought to be scrapping taxes for normal citizens and SMEs so they’ve got more money left in their pockets and budgets at the end of the month – money they can use however they see fit.

The imm cologne’s Trendboard is anticipating a return to more quality consciousness as a response to the economic crisis. Is “real” quality actually still affordable these days?
We’re living in a time when people are refraining from quick consumption again so yes, you could say people have started to change their mentality. They’re becoming more sensitive to how we use the world’s resources and looking for things that promise value and durability again. That’s why there’s an increasing demand for sustainability and value in our industry too. For earlier generations it was normal not to follow every furniture or clothing fashion or go along with every new style that came out. Then there was a period of rapid and changing consumption. The pleasure was often short-lived and the products interchangeable.

The interior trend experts: the Trendboard panel at a glance

Cecilie Manz, Marcus Fairs, Johanna Grawunder, Giulio Ridolfo and Bertjan Pot (f.l.t.r.) Photo: Koelnmesse; Lutz Sternstein

Every summer, five or six renowned designers get together in the tower block of Cologne exhibition centre for an unusual workshop that culminates in a prognosis of the most important developments in interior design: the Trend Book with the interior trends of the coming year. Every year, the Trendboard convened by the imm cologne brings together product designers, architects, material specialists and journalists who are regarded as internationally acknowledged authorities on design and are successful at international level. The Trendboard line-up changes every year and represents several nationalities and disciplines.

This year, materials specialist Giulio Ridolfo and journalist Marcus Fairs ensure the desired continuity. Giulio Ridolfo, a designer and textile consultant from Italy’s creative stronghold Udine, made a name for himself with his unusual works for the likes of Patricia Urquiola.

London author Marcus Fairs’ reputation is founded on his online magazine dezeen. New impulses came from American architect and interior designer Johanna Grawunder, whose work in the field of product design includes exclusive and colourful limited editions, and Cecilie Manz, a young and successful designer from Denmark with an excellent instinct for materials and colours. Dutch designer Bertjan Pot, the third new face on this year’s Trendboard, is also part of the young, successful generation of designers that is currently accelerating the pace of change in the design scene.

As in previous years, the Trendboard was accompanied by Andrej Kupetz, managing director of the Frankfurt-based German Design Council since 1999.

Konstantin Grcic: ”I even think certain rules have to be laid down. That’s the only way things are going to change.”

konstantin_grcicKonstantin Grcic (*1965) trained as a cabinetmaker at the John Makepeace School for Craftsmen in Dorset (1985 to 1987) before studying furniture design at the Royal College of Art in London.

After a year as an assistant to Jasper Morrison, he founded his own firm in Munich in 1991: “Konstantin Grcic Industrial Design”. The 90s saw the start of his success with laundry baskets and other plastic items for Authentics; then came style icons such as the Mayday lamp for Flos (1999), the swaying shelving unit Es for Nils Holger Moormann (1999), the Chaos armchair for ClassiCon (2001) and the Osorom seating element for Moroso (2002). The chair_ONE die-cast aluminium chair with a conical concrete foot (Magis, 2004) was actually intended for public spaces but went on to sell in its thousands as a sculptural lattice structure with seating function for the private loft. It was followed by the Miura bar stool (Plank, 2005).

Olaf Schroeder, ID_OS: “I doubt whether our society will shift back to less mass production.”

growing_tableID_OS is a development company for industrial and public design based in Frankfurt am Main. Since 1996, proprietor Olaf Schroeder (*1966) has been developing design concepts and solutions in the fields of product, furniture, system and exhibition design, as well as design projects for public spaces.

Besides the household products he has worked on for manufacturers Hailo, Leifheit and Rowenta, Olaf Schroeder has also developed and designed exhibitions and pavilion architectures. In 2003, Olaf Schroeder was awarded the state of Hesse’s special environmental award for his development work in connection with a solar-powered boat project. From 1998 until 2002, he was a lecturer at Offenbach University of Art and Design.

Cuno Frommherz: “I’m inspired by the form and structure of nature’s ‘products’.”

1imm09_06_trends_e_dtAfter an apprenticeship as a cabinetmaker, Swiss-born Cuno Frommherz (*1963) spent several years working for an interior design firm (1992–1996). Besides collaborating with artist Piroska Szönye, he has been an independent furniture designer since 1996. He describes himself as an autodidact.

He lives and works in two different locations in Switzerland: he has a studio and apartment in a 400-year-old manor house in the Alpine setting of the little town of Schwyz and has also built himself a loft and studio in a 1930s textile warehouse in Burgdorf (photo). Cuno Frommherz develops concepts and designs products for European furniture companies like De Sede, Rolf Benz, Cassina or Leolux.