PANTONE® Design Exhibition

“The purest and most thoughtful minds are those which love color the most.” John Ruskin

What’s your favorite color? We all have one that surfaces when there’s a personal choice. But, understanding how color popularity affects retail is critical to making savvy buying decisions. Each year, the world of home and design eagerly anticipates the revelation of the Color of the Year from PANTONE® to help influence the vision for the coming season. In January, buyers and designers got a first look at the 2016 choices during The Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market®.

AmericasMart® is host to a signature vignette exhibition featuring the newest Colors of the Year and PANTONEVIEW® home + interiors 2016 color forecast. These vignettes, curated by top interior designers, demonstrate how the color forecast translates into this year’s home and gift trends.

The seven acclaimed interior designers and tastemakers include Robert Leleux, Shaun Smith, Jamie Durie, Michael Habachy, Tami Ramsay, Janie Hirsch and Heather Hogan Roberts who each designed a vignette inspired by the PANTONEVIEW® home + interiors 2016 color forecast using products sourced from AmericasMart showrooms.

Trend vignettes that showcase the PANTONE® Colors of the Year 2016 were also created for the lobbies of AmericasMart Buildings 1 and 2 by talented designers Michel Boyd and Kristin Alber of REstyleSOURCE to showcase the vast range of product at the nation’s only global wholesale marketplace.

The PANTONE® Design Exhibition is the first and only place to see how the nation’s top interior designers envision PANTONE’s 2016 color trends coming to life. View the vignettes in Building 1, Floor 14 through May 2016.

For more information, visit

The Global Lens

By Patti Carpenter, AmericasMart Global Trend Ambassador

“The traveler sees what he sees, the tourist sees what he has come to see.”
GK Chesterson

Patti CarpenterI love color! It makes me happy. You might say I am passionate about palettes…..of color. There. I said it and I’m proud of it! Color can literally make me salivate. In fact, I often refer to colors as tasty or delicious.

Similarly, I love sumptuous textiles and beautifully thrown or decorated ceramics and furniture; the beautiful curve of well-balanced seating, the stateliness of a well-designed table. I love a good wood grain and perfectly polished metals. I love humble materials made into extraordinary treasures. I love creativity and functional design made fabulous. It’s in my DNA. It’s what inspires me and stirs me to get up and get out every day. Without it all, life would be diminished in some way. This I know for sure.

So when AmericasMart Atlanta approached me to be its Global Trend Ambassador, I was more than delighted. I put on my global glasses and got to work. As I travel around the world, 54 countries and counting, I’ll review design, color, print/pattern and materials and share my impressions with you. Come journey with me through the ethos and the ether of the current trends, distill them, and discover the subtle, salable sensibilities in what we find.

To begin, here are the color-related categories clamoring for my creative attention for the coming season.

Color: As we collectively focus on the environment and the climate, the warming of the world draws our attention to that side of the color palette countered by a coolly confident blue. I’m focused on…

  • Orange – warmed and reddened, scorched and sultrySultry Orange
  • Yellow – from red-tinged Ochre to shocking Lemon Zest whitened like a sunspot.Sunspot Yellow
  • Inky Indigo – deep, saturated and newer than navy
    Inky Indigo

Palettes: Colors play together in complex collaborations

  • Pales – pretty pastels that pack a modern, yet softly feminine punchPerfectly Pale
  • Mid Tones – perfectly pitched between pastels and bright; a Frank Stella retro-influence inspiresModern Midtones
  • Black and White – classic to cosmic, these opposites continue to attractOpposites Attract

Till the next time, I hope my reportage engages and inspires you; that it touches you in some visceral way…that is rouses you to join the creative conversation.

See these trends and more at The Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market, January 12-19, 2016. Learn more at

Join Global Trend Ambassador Patti Carpenter for “Through the Looking Glass: A Study In Contrasts”, an interactive journey through emerging international macro trends in color, print, surface design and materials with a focus on the influence of European trends on the current US home and gift industries. Your guide at the crossroads of business and creativity, Patti distills the broad-based themes directing trends around the world and their impact on American markets, while offering a first look at the must-see product innovations people will be talking about in the seasons ahead. Patti’s insightful, carefully curated presentations continue to be an indispensable resource for US-retailers and designers looking to stay abreast of groundbreaking trends on the global horizon. Thursday, January 14, 2016 | 11 a.m  | Building 1, Floor 15, Designer Workspace.

The Power of Color with David Bromstad

By David Bromstad

david-bromstadSome of you may know me from a few of my shows on HGTV such as “Design Star,” “Design Star All Stars,” “Color Splash” and “White Room Challenge.” I’m really looking forward to coming to AmericasMart Atlanta and talking to all of you about design: What I love and how to bring design you love into your home!

Nowadays, when not on television, I work solely in Interior Design and in fine art with my paintings and mural work; but when I started my career it was as an artist for Disney and Universal Studios.

I still love bringing an element of over-the-top fantasy to my design, but when I am creating for someone’s home it’s also super important to make the space livable but still fabulous beyond words. One of the easiest ways to bring interest and excitement into a room is with color! Anyone who knows me knows I am a HUGE fan of color.  If you want to use bright color in your home, it’s important to know HOW to use it! I always recommend keeping the biggest and most expensive elements of the room neutral and using pops of color as an accent. But if you want to be bold and cover a piece of furniture with a color, don’t let me stop you!

I love referring to current trends Pantone when it comes to color. They are a fantastic resource. Pantone has declared the color of 2013 Emerald. Emerald is an awesome color that they describe as “Lively. Radiant. Lush…. A color of elegance and beauty that enhances our sense of well-being, balance and harmony.”  I always consider the psychology behind a color when choosing a palette for a room. Greens are perfect for a bedroom and pairing it with earthy tones keeps the décor sexy, delicious and fabulous!

Bromstad2Another element that raises home décor to another level is the addition of “art.” That can be a lot of different things. Most people think of art as a painting but art is everything, lighting, sculpture and even furniture. One design trick I frequently recommend is finding a theme and repeating a color scheme and theme and repeating it throughout your home.  Whether it’s patterns, rugs, flooring or pillows.

If you know me you know I love an animal head, but to keep it modern I like to keep it all in one color scheme; I used white and black below but I’m also a huge fan of metallic.

Bromstad3These are just a few of the things I love to incorporate in my designs and I’m really looking forward to talking about this and so much more at AmericasMart!

Come see David Bromstad present “The Power of Color” on Saturday, January 12 at 3 p.m. in Building 2, Floor 9. Click here for a full list of events and seminars.

Ready to Tango?

The good folks at Pantone named Tangerine Tango as THE color for 2012, declaring it as an energetic red-orange with the ability to infuse any design with cheerful drama.

“Tangerine Tango marries the vivaciousness and adrenaline rush of red with the friendliness and warmth of yellow, to form a high-visibility, magnetic hue that emanates heat and energy” – Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director, Pantone Color Institute

Whether you’re looking for a quick infusion of color into a traditional pattern or a jolting pop for a new paint color, this hue can work across channels – home, gift and apparel. Look for it to be used as a component in the more vibrant interior design options slowly emerging in the home category as well as an immediate infusion into fashion, from staple pieces to accessories.

AmericasMart exhibitors already had myriad options available at the January 2012 Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market® to ensure retailers can be at the forefront of what’s “new” for their customers. From full groups in soft goods to accent case goods to lighting to decorative accessories, showrooms showed off brilliant displays, sometimes complete orange-toned settings and sometimes a burst of bold color in a traditional product.

Whatever’s happening in design – it’s at AmericasMart, from color to style.

Understanding “Green” Apparel

The Atlanta Apparel Market is always an exciting time as merchants look for the latest trends in fashion and fabrics. One of the most exciting developments in fabrics is now referred to as “sustainability” or “going green,” but let’s take a look and see if the fibers we are using are actually what they appear to be.

Organic Cotton

Organic cotton is a great product and a great fiber, no chemicals on one of the Hannamost chemically intensive crops in the world, what a great story. Before you purchase make sure your supplier can certify the source of the fiber and their certifications. Bottom line: make sure your organic cotton has integrity. Companies such as MantraMeds a U.S. manufacturer of fashion medical apparel, takes the approach of purchasing Texas Organic Cotton  and following the flow of the fiber. Like many other companies their comfort level is in knowing the farmer, seeing the Department of Agriculture certifications, and working closely with the spinner.

Recycled Cotton

The concept of recycled cotton is to take good fibers out of waste and in turn reduce the need to actually grow more cotton. In a lot of ways recycled cotton is much better than organic cotton; it reduces the acreage of cottoncottag grown. It’s important to remember however that the process of reclaiming fibers is difficult on the integrity of the fiber itself. You simply cannot make a fine count yarn out of short fibers, but you can make beautiful blends and coarse counts. Patrick Yarns ( is a domestic leader in placing recycled cotton in the correct market


Bamboo is the source of cellulose in rayon; it’s not the fiber. Rayon can be phenomenally harsh in manufacturing with the cellulose put in a slurry of acid and then extruded into fiber. Rayon was originally made in the U.S. out of wood pulp, but economics and environmental issues stopped domestic production. One item of note is that it is against FTC regulations to label a product as just “bamboo,” it must be labeled as “cellulose” or “rayon.”

Modal and Tencel are cellulosic fibers but made by Lenzing in a close loop system. If you like cellulosic fibers such as bamboo, it’s imperative to ask your supplier about Modal and Tencel. These fibers have the attributes of rayon, including the great “hand,” plus more, and all are done in an environmentally friendly way.

Recycled Polyester

Recycled polyester (rpet) is a fiber that is making great strides for all the right reasons. RPET saves energy, reduces our dependence on oil, and can save millions of plastic bottles from our landfills. Much like organic cotton it’s imperative you trust your source. One leader in the industry is Unifi with their U-Trust third party verification on their Repreve brand of recycled poly. One of the most attractive aspects of RPET is that the fibers have all the attributes of virgin polyester, but with a great environmental story.

Earthspun Apparel  has just launched an intriguing new RPET that is the colortsgrass of the feed stock. Brown recycled plastic bottles make brown fiber, green/green, blue/blue, etc. The color of the garments are derived without the water and energy consumption of the conventional dying process.

There are many other fibers on the market with some very unique features. Fibers today are being made from unique products like coconut shells and corn sugars,  each new fiber has its own set of attributes and each has a great story. The best way to understand the products you purchase is to ask the simple questions, and to build a relationship with your vendor.

Jack Miller is a partner with SustainTex LLC, and he would be delighted to discuss sustainable fabrics and practices in more detail during Atlanta Apparel Market.