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2011 Home Design Color Trends

As a Designer it’s so important to be well versed on all upcoming home design and renovation trends – from building trends to paint colors and everything in between. Benjamin Moore’s 2011 Color Forecast was released to Architects and Designers last month – and I wanted to share their findings with you.
Each year the color expert team at Benjamin Moore declares their predictions for the upcoming year by tracking the more recent social, cultural and political conditions and how they directly impact fashion and design trends. What they discovered was an overwhelming desire for a sense of balance coupled with four underlying themes: The Farm, Order, Escape and Tribe.
1. The Farm
There is a major focus on hearth and home for obvious reasons and most are anchoring themselves within a new reality. Earthy colors straight from the farm will be dominating interiors this year. Just take a look at your local Farmers Market for inspiration. From earthy browns, buttery yellows and milky whites – to tomatoes, pumpkins and greens.
Also look for handcrafted fabrics, burlaps, tea-stained materials, and all types of petrified, bleached and natural woods – which suggests a return to life’s simpler things.
2. Order
We are craving a sense of balance and order from the chaos of the past couple of years. This is interpreted by infusing red, blues, yellows and greens to juxtapose with more monochromatic variations of black, white and gray. Geometric patterns with crisp stripes, dots and spirals uplift our spirit and improve our mood. These days it’s all about making ourselves feel happy.
3. Escape
The world has been a little harsh lately so escaping into a dream world full of hope and optimism for the future- is extremely appealing at the moment. The dreamy glamour of sheer draped fabrics, metallic finishes and softened textures coupled with a more pale, frosted and opalescent color palette can be just the remedy for overcoming adversity.
4. Tribe
A focus back to our ethnic communities and much like the farm, we are aching to return to the simpler things in life yet in a more soulful way. The spicy color palette of the land such as rich berry, cinnamon, saffron and fire orange are anchored with bronzes and charcoals. There is a huge focus on patterns, stencils, hand embroidery and beading,
So how will you seek that order and balance in your life? Will you be returning to the hearth, escaping into your dreams or focusing on your community when gathering your home design inspiration for this year?…

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Trends in Public Space Refurbishments

Refurbishments of public spaces can be major issues. They tend to be big budget, and facility managers have to look for cost effectiveness as well as good designs. This is particularly the case in flooring, where large areas have to be managed. Finding the right commercial floor covering is the answer to dealing with these often demanding situations.

Public areas- big spaces and design

One of the most difficult types of public space refurbishment is the typical situation with very large spaces to be redesigned and upgraded. The need is to achieve good long term value, as well as design values. The most effective way of approaching these issues is to use a visualisation system which can explore different flooring options.

Best practice using visualisation technology is to compare a series of design options against the public space setting to get a clear idea of the design factors. You can also compare pattern options, and get a clear idea of the overall space. The additional advantage of visualisation is that you can compare a range of design modes across a big range, allowing a wide range of choices.

Note: The great advantage of visualisation technology is that at the planning and recommendation stages it provides a clear picture of the design options. This both simplifies the description process and provides a clear audit and estimate track for the various choices.

The cost factors- Maintenance, product life and repairs

These public areas are also long term maintenance issues and often have significant budget costs. Durable flooring is a natural issue, because real cost is defined over the life of the product. Maintenance and repairs can add significantly to the cost over time.

Carpets for public spaces need to be easy to maintain. Repairs should be possible using in-house resources, rather than requiring full service for minor issues. This is a cost factor that can’t be ignored, because heavy usage and wear and tear naturally create the possibility of added costs in these areas.

Modular carpet flooring- An all round solution

Modular carpet tiles are the solution to all these issues in one package. This type of carpet is very heavy duty, designer carpet tiling with a huge range of design choices. These are the new generation sustainable carpets, which are based on a new manufacturing paradigm incorporating a full environmentally responsible product life cycle.

There are many major differences with modular carpeting:

Repair and maintenance are very easy, and tiles can be replaced in minutes if required. This drastically reduces real cost over time.

These carpet tiles have individual backing, making them much stronger than old style conventional carpeting.

Design options include a vast range of different styles, including pattern, plain, multiple colours, and variable mixes of design. (This is where you can really appreciate the visualisation process, and look properly at design possibilities.)

Modular carpeting approach has been a big success in universities, commercial flooring, hospitality, retail, health care and education, creating the public spaces of the future…