Enlightening and Innovative: Key Home Trends from IDS West

Michelle Hopkins
October 1, 2015

The goal of the 11th annual Interior Design Show West (IDS West) was to enlighten the more than 35,000 attendees with some new, and not so new but still raging, home trends. If the numbers and the excitement at the show were any indication, the show succeeded.

Held in the Vancouver Convention Centre West, from September 24 to 27, the show featured a host of industry professionals such as American furniture designer Roy McMakin; Design Within Reach founder Rob Forbes as well as affable HGTV’s celebrity designer Tommy Smythe, who all wowed the crowds as they spoke about design, architecture, trends and much more. In addition, a number of local renowned architects and designers from across the globe shared their true West Coast awareness heading into 2016.

The show highlighted 250 exhibits featuring the latest in décor and furniture from the Pacific Northwest. For the first time at IDS West, six leading designers from Los Angeles, dubbed the LA Exchange, were on hand to showcase their unique design influences.

“I was thrilled with the weekend … it was phenomenal,” says Jody Philips, the show director. “We had a vision to celebrate the strong design boom happening in Vancouver and across the Pacific Northwest. We saw a lot of Palm Springs pastels, such as mint, sky blue, dusty pink and peach, that is really trending in LA, whether it’s in accessories, wall coverings or furniture. Yet, we also saw rich, bold colours as well.”

Some of Philip’s highlights from the show included potter/author/designer Jonathan Adler’s Pop-Up Show, which showcased his latest collection of furniture and decorative accessories designed in a “modern American glamour style.”

“One of this year’s super-minimalist, mid-century chic chair that received a lot of attention, was created by Jonathan Adler,” she adds. “It is a gorgeous sculptured blue dining room chair with a brass metal base and soft curves.”

In the end, Philips adds, she was also honoured to honour and profile “our amazing, talented homegrown local designers and furniture creators.”

Key Interior Designers’ Trends to Watch For

LA textile designer Annabel Inganni of Wolfum:

Inganni collaborated with Burritt Brothers on a collection of four art deco graphic carpets. She says:

  • Retro 70s and mid-century modern looks are still red hot
  • Powder tones with white on rugs, wall coverings, accessories and even furniture
  • White will NEVER go out of style
  • Handcrafted pieces that are well-made become those timeless pieces that look great in any décor.
  • Don’t be afraid of placing vibrant or bold pops of colour in your décor – experiment and experiment again
  • Textures are organic and natural – woven and linen in their natural hues.
  • Don’t just think of rugs for your flooring; a bold statement can be made by hanging that gorgeous rug on the wall for an instant piece of art work
  • Don’t be afraid to splash vibrant paint colour onto an accent wall. Pink in blush or rose, blues in teal or turquoise are also hot hues right now. Gold is still not showing any sign of stopping anytime soon … it’s everywhere.

Philippe Malouin, interior designer and transplanted Montrealer living in London, England

“There is still a strong desire in interior design for a return to simplicity, being less ostentatious and more utilitarian,” he says. “I think design is more honest … be inspired more by materials rather than trends.”

Having said that, he also encourages people to experiment more with form, texture and design.

  • Don’t go for a singular style – be a little eclectic in your home.
  • Hold onto timeless/intelligent pieces because you never know if they will look good in another space. “If you are fortunate enough to have art and vintage pieces from your grandparents, then integrate them into your design,” he says. “It doesn’t matter whether your décor is traditional, country or contemporary, those pieces add personality into any room.”
  • Don’t design a home all at once. Live in it; get a sense of it.
  • Invest in a few key pieces of furniture. Buy something that you will love for decades to come.

Nancy Bendtsen, co-owner Inform Interiors and this year’s IDS West show ambassador

  • The biggest thing in lighting is LED – still going strong and getting stronger. Really wonderful things are happening with LED lights,” Bendtsen adds. “We are achieving a higher and warmer light.”
  • More colour in lighting such as pinks, soft blues, lots of purple.
  • There's also an emerging trend in bigger, “fatter” lights. Designers are way more inventive, says Bendtsen.
  • More colour and patterns in sofas, throws and pillows. “I’m getting a sense that we are much braver, more self confident, taking chances in decorating our homes today.”
  • Natural, organic, simple fabrics. Although an established trend for a few years now, this trend is getting hotter.
  • Carpeting is making a comeback of sorts, says Bendtsen, because of an explosion of colours and textures to choose from.
Michelle Hopkins
Michelle Hopkins is a Vancouver-based freelance writer with extensive magazine, newspaper and online writing experience in home décor, new home developments, culinary adventures, wine, travel and more. Michelle writes for many notable publications including Real Estate Weekly and other Glacier Media Group publications, Western Living Magazine, Vancouver Magazine, Home Décor & Renovations, to name just a few. Michelle is passionate about anything to do with real estate.