CORT Events Shares Top Event Design Trends for 2017

CORT Events, the nation’s leading furniture, lighting and accessories rental company, announces the 2017 top event and meeting furnishings design trends for planning a successful program: Organic and Earthy Environments, Eclectic Modern Designs and Functionality.

Organic and Earthy Environments

Organic and Earthy Environments are increasingly important in today’s event design. Visual interest is sparked by using earth-centric colors and mixed materials in tables, ottomans, accent pieces and rugs. Trends in soft seating feature shades of gray and light colors, allowing for a clean palette that boasts lush textured fabrics with a soft organic touch. Using life-like greenery to divide space and lend an earthy feel is a simple way to warm up your event space.

“Clients want a space that exudes warmth and facilitates connections, whether it’s a meeting in a hotel ballroom or an evening gala,” said Kevin Dana, executive director of marketing and product development at CORT Events. “In addition to organic and earthy décor, we’ve seen a shift towards adding more eclecticism onto ever popular Mid-century and Danish modern-inspired designs in order to build these comfortable, organic environments. Events are utilizing rich fabrics, textures, unusual shapes and mixed materials.”

Eclectic Modern Design

To achieve eclectic modern designs, planners are using a surprising mix of wood, marble, metallic finishes, lush fabrics and greenery. CORT’s full range of life-like greenery can bring the outdoors inside. When mixed with simplistic or geometric furnishings and pops of color that appear in nature, a fresh look that feels natural is created.

Pantone’s spring 2017 color palette is an unusual juxtaposition of vitality, calmness and the great outdoors, further representing this trend. Minimalistic furnishings in gray tones, such as CORT’s new modular Hexagon Ottomans and Island Double Sofas embody the clean, neutral mid-century trend and serve as the canvas to layer pops of color and other décor elements such as rugs, pillows and lighting that provide an eclectic feel.

The rustic and vintage looks of recent past are morphing toward this eclecticism too, combining art deco, modernism and urban industrial together for a more sophisticated residential vibe. Black- or gold- toned metals set off by glass, wood or marble surfaces are trending in accent and dining tables, shelving, and other occasional furnishings.

“The look of the season is marble surfaces,” says Jordan Carbotti, designer of Perfect Surroundings, “You’re seeing it incorporated into nearly every event design and it mixes easily with other materials and fits into any theme, not to mention it’s really sophisticated.”


Finally, functionality is important in satisfying changing expectations set by the millennial generation as well as facilitating networking, engagement and connections. The natural aesthetic still must accommodate technology, and by adding charging tables and powered seating to designs, designers can assure they are addressing those needs as well. Ottomans, such as CORT’s new Marche collection, available in 10 colors, are a great way to create campfire seating and small theater groupings that can be easily rearranged for impromptu creative gatherings within larger meetings.  Not to mention, they add a wonderful pop of color.

“Today, planners must think about creating meeting environments that are comfortable and functional. Gone are the days of boring theater seating using uncomfortable banquet chairs. Attendees expect a higher standard to help foster creativity and learning,” said Dana. Upgraded meeting furnishings such as CORT’s Meeting Chairs, PRO executive chair or Roma seating collection are good examples of the type of stylish modern seating that can be mixed together to set a room for maximum engagement.