Decor & Design Round up
In case you've been hiding under a rock, Melbourne's been the place to be this July. Headlining the various design events around town was the Decor & Design exhibition, so we booked our fav art hotel and jumped on a plane to get our design fix. Upon arrival, there's always a buzz of excitement when entering the exhibition hall, and this year the event also co-located the Australian International Furniture Fair (AIFF), so there was double the action. Lucky us! 

This year the Nordic trend seems to have eclipsed the last traces of Asian inspired furnishings, while the Scandi style appears to have peaked to a degree equalling the French Provincial/Hamptons look. That'll be welcome news to lovers of all things geometric, pale wood toned and mid-century inspired. 

We even spotted several suppliers of reindeer hides as well as decorated cowhides with metallic finishes and patterns.

For those wanting to side step trends of either French, Hampton or Scandi orientation, the best of the best suppliers were still providing plenty of contemporary and classic pieces to create a unique, eclectic or curated look as takes your fancy. 

However, it was a little disappointing to see still fewer small independent suppliers, fabric designers or niche markets represented. Although this decline has been steady over the last few years and maybe a result of the costs of exhibiting at the show and greater access to public markets online. We also found that generally the diversity and originality of overall trends between the larger suppliers was more marginal at this show than those in the recent past. Conversely unique, individually styled pieces with striking details stood out amongst the more generic lines. Having both aspects represented at the show can have a polarising but positive effect. 

On one side consumers are saturated with images adhering to the more generic lines, which means fulfilling client wishes is relatively straight forward for their designer or decorator. Alternatively clients who want to take advantage of a designer’s key skill set and have the confidence to collaborate to create a personalised, unique interior décor still have the option and we noted several dynamic new pieces ideally suited to current projects.

Once we'd visited the Salon Champagne Bar we were 
ready to check out this year's VIVID (Vibrant Visions in Design) entrants. And it completely blew us out of the water! In it's 13th year as Australia's longest running design competition, VIVID showcases market-ready and prototype furniture and lighting designs, where it's free to enter for professional designers who have been in business for less than five years and for current students of design. We loved the creativity displayed by all of the entrants, and it's so inspiring to see a fresh wave of such talented designers to hopefully soon hit the shelves with their work.



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