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January 04, 2006

Details Matter

In new builds and new products, fine details will keep consumers happy in 2006.

Architect Evan Galen notices it in his New York City firm. He says, "As people are becoming less enchanted with bigger is always better, we are finding our clients going towards more beautifully crafted interiors. Beautiful details. Exotic materials, unusual shapes in rooms or walls or ceilings."

Consumer color expert Laura Guido-Clark forecasts similar trends in residential furniture. "I see a renewed interest in natural and beautiful materials, things that resonate on a soulful level," she says.

"Also, the play of materials is becoming more important. We’re starting to see more mixing of disparate materials like matte and gloss, or plastic and wood in a single object. It intrigues people and gives a piece more surface interest," she says.

Another tip she gives, and this one is more for manufacturers: be honest with your materials.

"Consumers want manufacturers and designers to be honest about materials used and to celebrate the material. They don’t want to see plastic pretending to be something else. Let plastic be plastic. If you want something to look like wood, use wood," says Guido-Clark.

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