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Mixing It Up

An interesting puzzle for the uninitiated on hotel design is just how does it all fit together? Out of context of the guestroom or public space, fabrics and wall coverings may make an observer wonder: What are they thinking? But with a skillful eye and a seemingly endless variety of items from which to choose, hospitality designers become their own kind of “mixologists,” layering plaids with Op-Art patterns, silk with burlaps and stripes with dots. Keeping the designers on track are the manufacturers and suppliers of wall coverings and fabrics, who key into the latest trends and translate them into tactile goods. And as the lodging industry gains traction and hoteliers look to renovate and fulfill CapEx needs, some of the industry’s leading players in fabrics and wall coverings recently gave Hotel Business Design a glimpse of what’s trending now.

For example, Valley Forge Fabrics (VFF) recently introduced its International Specifier Collection, which utilizes a combination of various yarn sizes, yarn types, high-lustre and non-reflective fiber twists that give these fabrics a high-end look and “luxurious hand,” according to the company. Textures are available in more than 100 colors and model room yardage is in stock.

VFF President Diana Dobin said the collection creates market excitement as a good fit for hotels “because textures are classic design elements most often found in the most upscale residential projects, and this collection was created with various yarn sizes to give these fabrics their high-end look while exceeding durability requirements.” 

She expects to see interest in the collection within all levels of the lodging industry, from limited-service to boutique properties to luxury brands. 

VFF also introduced the Serengeti composite fabric collection. This faux leather collection is composed of more than 35 recreations of textured animal hairs, reptile skins, zebra patterns, leopard prints and Shagreen composite textile. 

“Animal prints and reproductions are an exploding trend in hospitality design,” noted Dobin. She added the collection is “perfect for guestroom seating, task chair seating, wall covering, banquettes, booth backs and upholstered headboards.”

“One of the trends in our studio is Speakeasy, a lifestyle trend, driven by optimism and the new look of luxe,” said Stacy Garcia, CEO of Stacy Garcia Design. “We developed, with LebaTex (a textile converter of decorative fabrics), a drapery and upholstery grouping inspired by this trend, and I think the juxtaposition of large and small scale with metallic accents will create excitement for this product in the hospitality industry. Our newest wall covering with York—Charleston—has a play on texture versus pattern and is enhanced with pearl and metallic, an important characteristic of the Speakeasy trend. It has the tightness of a texture yet still has movement, which is a great balance for hotels.”

The grouping also includes “Fitzgerald” and “Cabaret,” patterns that come standard with acrylic backing and NanoTex for upholstery end use; and “Moonshine” and “Bubbly” complement the grouping as woven and printed draperies, respectively. Sunburst and fan motifs are prominent elements of the designs.  

“This product is applicable to all levels of the market and not limited to period properties. I can see interest from both boutique and urban area properties,” said Garcia. 

Bill Friese, VP at Fabtex, offered the company’s Prestige Fabrics as on trend, noting they “possess many attributes of more expensive yarn-dyed textiles that make them the perfect choice to add interest to the look and feel of the guestroom. Their special yarns yield a soft hand, beautiful tone-on-tone color effects and subtle sheen that give them a look of elegance at a reasonable price. The six patterns offer creative options for subtle mix-and-match pairings and are perfect for all accessory items. The fabrics are 100% Polyester FR for bedding and draperies so they’re easy care for hotel properties, and their short lead times fit the most demanding production schedules.”

Uses could include bed scarves, skirts, pillow shams, decorative pillows, window treatments and other accents.

“We anticipate strong interest for the Prestige Collection among midscale to upscale hotel properties because of the attractive, creative options, the upscale look and feel of the fabrics, the easy care attributes and the reasonable price. The subtle tone-on-tone patterns and colors will help keep the bedding and draperies looking fresh,” said Friese. “We expect that boutique properties will like the unique patterns and colors for bedding, draperies and decorative pillows, and the many finishing options like pleats and two-tone fabrication to add an interesting and elevated sense of style.”

Karen Kops, VP/product development for Hunter Douglas Hospitality, noted the company has introduced the Juxtapose Fabric Collection, which features a new range of both wide and narrow prints for bedding and drapery. Nine new designs include a mix of organic and geometric patterns in colorways from neutrals to jewel tones. 

The collection “offers any hospitality designer versatile style options—ranging from nature-inspired motifs to modern graphics,” said Kops. “By offering so many inspiring possibilities, the collection generates excitement by allowing designers to mix trends and color palettes, creating cohesive looks that are subtle and surprising.”   

She added: “Juxtapose was designed with flexibility in mind. Our broad range of base clothes makes Juxtapose sophisticated enough for four-star properties but also within the reach of more value-oriented properties.”

The collection includes modern designs such as Circlet, Maliki and Pointalia; takes on Hawaiian inspiration such as Puka and Kona; and adaptable designs like Lula, Mantra, Neo and Providence. 

Juxtapose will soon be seen at a Hampton Inn project in Michigan. “The customer is using Pointalia for drapery panels in combination with a printed blackout fabric, cornice and contrasting well—a complete window package,” said Kops.  

Gina Shaw, VP/product development at York Wallcoverings, pointed to the company’s Velocity wall-covering pattern as a trending design. 

“Velocity is a great marriage of (artist) Candice Olson’s love of clean lines and York’s specialty manufacturing techniques. Candice created an oversized, vertical zigzag pattern, which York rendered in gold Mylar on a deep, charcoal background. This design (part of the York Designer Series) makes a bold statement. I picture it in a hotel lobby, lounge area or guestroom statement wall,” said Shaw.

It’s also available in gold on tan, silver on white and silver on charcoal, and is made from harvested renewable resources, according to York.

At Chella Textiles, Marcy Graham, VP/marketing, said its new Radiance Collection offers outdoor fabrics woven with a metallic yarn produced from recycled materials with names such as Facet, Medallion and Quicksilver. “These fabrics are ideal for upholstery and drapery and work equally well outdoors or indoors. They create continuity from lounge to loggia to poolside,” said Graham. 

Facet is a multicolored weave with weft chenille yarns at a 40-degree angle to the warp, while Medallion is a traditional motif updated with calligraphic lines rendered in metallic yarns. Quicksilver incorporates three yarns—one thick, one thin, one shiny—in both warp and weft directions to create a soft fabric with a chainlink optic. The textiles are machine washable, colorfast, lightfast and resist stains, mold and mildew.

Harvey Nudelman, president of Fabricut Contract, is touting the Maurice Pleat fabric. “It’s beautiful. Designed by Roger Thomas, a leader in hospitality design, for our S. Harris Contract line, this fabric is inherently flame-retardant and a wide-width sheer; the perfect combination for hospitality interiors. Texture is an important element in Roger’s work and a welcome surprise in a drapery sheer,” said Nudelman.

The executive noted Maurice Pleat in the color Snow Queen already has been installed at the Wynn and Encore at Wynn in Las Vegas. “From boutique properties to the best hotels in the world and public spaces to suites, this fabric elegantly combines both shimmer and deep texture for a floor to ceiling statement,” said Nudelman.

Innovations is highlighting its Cebu Collection of wall coverings. According to the company’s design director, Michael Freedman, the collection includes two lines: Yesterday’s News, made of old newspaper on recycled paperboard and Sumatra, made of capiz flakes, which is waste product from the interiors industry adhered to recycled paperboard.  

“We really think this paper will work in all spaces.  It’s a neutral with an unexpected effect if you look closely,” said Freedman.