Trending at the Int’l Furniture Show: Faux Distressed Surfaces

Designer Laura Handler, whose Montana home we featured a while back, sent us a report of her vist to ICFF, the yearly International Contemporary Furniture Fair in New York City.  Here’s the trend she spotted and her funny and insightful commentary :

I did notice an interesting phenomenon. There seemed to be a growing trend of faux distressed surfaces…

Sally Schneider

Laura Handler

Is it for people moving into expensive new condos who want to feel like struggling artist/hipsters?
Is it a reaction against the technological advances in design?
When I saw wall covering that looked like crumbling concrete and pillows printed with spray-painted graffiti, I thought: “It’s the woodgrain Formica of our time!”, which is now aged reclaimed woodgrain.

Sally Schneider

Laura Handler

Shall we call it “Detroit Chic?”.
Is it perhaps another version of the 80′s when people wanted a “country-style” apartment, which to me was a later iteration of my parent’s “Early American” split level?

Sally Schneider

Laura Handler

Speaking of formica, I found THIS at the show too, which I designed for Sottsass Associati for Abet Laminati about 25 years ago (too bad I didn’t get royalties). 

I still like it. It’s not fake anything.

Abet Laminati

Abet Laminati

Laura has identified a style trend that is about the “feeling” of aged, distressed, elemental, without actually having to acquire the material that would normally provide it. The question to us is, what yearning is at the heart of it?

Check out Laura’s blog, Interesting Found Objects.

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