Your personal summary of DOMOTEX 2019: What do you think are the flooring trends? 2019?

In the context of handmade rugs and carpets to speak of trends is to speak of periods of time far in excess of any one trade show, any one season, or even one year. For a product which can and does endure a lifetime of use, it is best to examine trends - such as they are - over years if not decades. Foremost amongst trends in handmade rugs then is the continued embrace of customization, but also the carryover of environmental concerns from the broader world of flooring as experienced not only at DOMOTEX, but everywhere.

The role of customization is to provide a unique interior environment for the inhabitant of the space. This can be accomplished via the commissioning of a bespoke carpet just as it can be through careful sourcing of an extant one-of-a-kind carpet. Regardless of the methodology, both options result in a space truly tailored to the individual; one that speaks to their core values and the zeitgeist of an era.

The second trend, one which speaks both to society en masse but also to the mood of emerging consumer demographics and indeed the future needs of this planet, is the embrace of sustainable methods of rug and carpet manufacture: handmade, machine-made, or otherwise. Buying a unique old rug from stock is perhaps the most responsible as no new materials are consumed, while myriad options now exist to create a fully bespoke rug with minimal environmental impact. These minimally harmful approaches represent the current best we can do, but the future of rugs and carpets requires even bolder thinking, hints of which could be seen and overheard during DOMOTEX 2019.

From fibres, to shipping, to water consumption, to social and labour issues there finally seems a to be a fledgling critical mass willing to embrace the environmental challenges we face. This trend is one I am happy to identify and when married with the efforts of the individual to live beautifully yet sustainably has the potential to synergistically improve the planet, even if it just doing our small part in the world of rugs and carpets.

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