CORT’s Merchandising Team Researches for Design Inspiration

Pink Sofa

During the first quarter of each New Year, CORT’s merchandising team is busy researching what’s hot in furniture – from studying blogs and design magazines to attending key international and US furniture shows, seeing the latest trends in interior design and gathering ideas on what the furniture rental company may want to introduce in its product lines over the coming years.

In late January, CORT’s Purchasing Manager Chris Tuohy and VP of Merchandising Ann Sennewald attended IMM Cologne – The International Interiors Show in Cologne, Germany.

Pink and grey LR

During the show, Ann and Chris found that the overall color palette for fabrics and accent pieces this year is soft and muted. All shades of pink are being used as an accent and most often mixed with grey. The muted pastel, paired with soft neutrals, induces a calm and relaxing environment. Additionally, they found that blues are still on top as the color of choice for the next few years. Tropical and turquoise remain the most prominent hues in design. Yellow, from a bright banana to a spiced mustard shade serves as an accent color for the blue hues. One surprise at the show was the growing popularity of green, influenced by nature and organic materials.

Grey and mustard yellow sofaFor furniture, wood tones are bleached or stained. Ann and Chris saw some pieces stained in grey and black, but the use of pastel colors intrigued them the most. Continuing the trend of metal used on wood as an accent to invoke creativity, the show featured pieces that were hammered, chiseled and hand-carved, bringing drama to a space.

A few more international design shows and the High Point Market in April in North Carolina will round out CORT merchandising team’s research as they shore up 2017 product selections for its customers and looks to 2018 and beyond for design trends for consideration.