January Market Madness Revisited: A review of Dallas, Atlanta and Las Vegas Markets

Furniture, Lighting & Decor editors traveled the country to see the latest the home furnishings had on offer in January in Dallas, Atlanta and Las Vegas.

02/04/2020
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kalalou dallas market center
Kalalou kicked off 2020 markets with a new showroom at Dallas Market Center and new categories, including rugs and furniture.

Having spanned the country in what can only be described as “Market Madness Month,” the Furniture, Lighting & Decor team took flight for Dallas (Lightovation and the Total Home & Gift Market) first, then the newly renamed Atlanta Market next. Finally, we spent eight days in Las Vegas, where we perused kitchen, bath and building trends at KBIS/IBS, followed by the Las Vegas Market for even more furniture, lighting and decor.

I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t all a little bit of a blur as I got on that final plane ride home last week. However, having had a few days to scroll through photos, notes and fond memories, there was, as always, so much to see and do as the home industry kicked off 2020 in the way it does best, with strong optimism for the year ahead and lots of new stuff. 

IMAX Stacy Garcia
IMAX launched a new accessories collection with Stacy Garcia in January. 

 

Attendees across the country showed up to do business, according to market centers and exhibitors, who touted strong attendance, for the most part, as well as an uptick in orders. Several exhibitors considered this January’s markets as some of their strongest in several years. 

KBIS/IBS, for example, continues to see attendance climb, this year with upwards of 130,000 attendees. Observationally, walking through those aisles was akin to heading to Penn Station in the middle of the New York City rush. FYI, that’s a good thing at a trade show! Aisles, elevators and escalators in Dallas, Atlanta and Las Vegas home furnishings markets boasted significant crowds as well. 

KBIS IBS Crowd
KBIS/IBS touted record crowds at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

So, as a retailer, designer or other attendee, you don’t come to market to vacation — well there’s no harm in a few cool restaurant excursions, a few hours at the spa or winning at the casino, networking with peers and friends at galas such as the ARTS Awards and Gift for Life Party, right? — but really, we’re all here to see what’s new and coming next, and I must say vendors from Dallas to Atlanta to Las Vegas did not disappoint! 

ARTS Awards Dallas
The crowds came out in their finest for the 31st Annual ARTS Awards in Dallas. 

The New, the Trends, the Products

From new exhibitors — 20+ new and expanded showrooms at Lightovation for example — to new categories and product lines, exhibitors came to markets armed with updated showrooms, new marketing plans, new categories, and of course, lots of new products. 

From continued adoption of LED and smart technology in lighting, kitchen and bath, to more natural materials, such as rattans, cane and natural fibers in furniture and decor, the trends we saw at markets in January spanned the spectrum. A key takeaway from a market trend perspective across the home was catering to the personal tastes of consumers, be they retail customers or design clients. 

GE Monogram Kitchen KBIS
At KBIS, GE Monogram modeled its kitchens from mood boards taken from the pages of fashion magazines.

Through mixed finishes, custom furnishings and decor designed for everything from the most modern spaces to a still rustic, farmhouse finish — depending on the showroom — exhibitors were catering to their retail and design audiences with products that represented a diverse array of tastes and styles. 

Some overarching trends we continued to see this January included matte black and warm gold finishes in lighting and kitchen and bath hardware (often mixed together), as well as more painted finishes; organic, hand-thrown shapes in glass lighting and decor; and a further lean toward blending indoor/outdoor spaces through natural materials and motifs. 

Kichler Lighting Lightovation Dallas
Kichler showcased myriad mixed finishes as part of a new custom program at Lightovation.

Color and pattern continue to trend as well, with greens still relevant, warm mustardy golds finding their way onto upholstery and even refrigerators, and of course blue. Pantone's Classic Blue Color of the Year could be seen across categories and showrooms. While blue never really goes away in home design, this deep, soothing blue has taken hold and was a focal point of new collections across the country, regardless of style. 

Sagebrook Home Las Vegas
Sagebrook Home paired Classic Blue with Gold in this display.

For more on the new products and trends we saw during January, watch for our gallery updates of each market. We’re pulling our images and thoughts together as we speak! 

 

We Got Our Learning On

It certainly wouldn’t be market season without a slate of seminars, keynotes and panels where attendees had a chance to rest their weary feet and learn something about their businesses, from the Aerin Lauder keynote at Dallas Market Center to our very first Home Design Business Think Tank with/for designers at Las Vegas Market. Watch for our insights from this Think Tank — Right Brain/Left Brain: How to Build a Business with a Creative Mind — on the website and in our March issue. 

Home Design Business Think Tank
Our very first Home Design Business Think Tank featured (l to r) Toma Clark Haines, Dann Foley, Wendy Glaister, Kerrie Kelly, Diane Falvey, Kimberly Joi McDonald, Fernando Rodriguez and Sarah Grover. 

Opportunities to connect with peers and gain insights into your businesses continue to grow at markets all over, adding value and experience for all attendees. KBIS/IBS featured ample educational opportunities for the design community, from a full lineup of seminars at the Lightovation Lounge and the KBIS Salon to panels and speakers at the HOUZZ booth throughout the days. 

Lightovation Lounge Lighting Seminar
Lightovation hosted a series of seminars at the Lightovation Lounge in KBIS.

We even got to see technology and trend updates affecting new builds at the National Association of Home Builders' New American Home, in Henderson, NV, Show Village at the Las Vegas Convention Center, and the Armoniosa Show House, also in Las Vegas. That was in addition to a pre-market Saturday tour of historic Mid-Century Modern homes in Las Vegas, a trend that still impacts home design today. 

Armoniosa Showhouse Las Vegas
The Armoniosa Showhouse featured the stylings of Kimberly Joi McDonald and Donna Moss. 

While we still feel like we’re recovering from a whirlwind January that had us traversing the country in trains, planes and automobiles, along with a bevy of market shuttles, the energy and thoughtfulness that went into these markets on every level offered up an exciting experience that Furniture, Lighting & Decor editors were happy to be included in. And, of course, we’re looking forward to what’s next!

Diane Falvey

Diane Falvey is Editor-in-Chief of Furniture, Lighting & Decor, leading the editorial direction of the brand, and continuing to build the brand’s reach and messaging through print, digital and event platforms. Falvey came to the brand from Dallas Market Center, where as Editor-in-Chief, she was responsible for creative and content direction for the Source magazine and the Market Center’s other editorial publications. Falvey also served as Editor-in-Chief of Gifts & Decorative Accessories, a monthly trade publication and digital platform designed to support gift and home retailers.

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