The word ‘carpet’, we’re happy to admit here at Elite, doesn’t really conjure up the concept of fashion or trend, but having said that we have noticed, and the carpet business of course has noticed, certain trends over the past few years.
One of the significant trends, which may be reversing a little at the moment, is a whole-scale move away from particularly wall-to-wall carpet, in people’s houses and in multi-occupancy buildings. Many new home owners, especially if they are moving into a house previously occupied by an older generation, are ripping up wall-to-wall carpets with gay abandon and, if they’re lucky, exposing beautiful wooden floors, which certainly can give a more up-to-date look. If they’re not lucky they end up looking at a pretty scruffy and unsuitable floor, and need to get new carpets to cover it up!
Even if you do expose some beautiful floor boarding, it can get a little chilly during the winter and so, in preference to wall-to-wall, many people are opting to put down rugs instead, allowing a good combination of style and finish with a little bit of warmth.
If there’s any discernible trend in terms of look and colour, it’s towards a more natural, rustic look as opposed to the bright, even garish colours of previous years. Your author once visited one of the institutions of the European Union in Luxembourg some time ago, to be confronted by a violently lime green carpet, not only on the floor, but also covering parts of the wall. Due to a slight overindulgence the night before, the carpet colour certainly didn’t aid concentration during the talk. Having your colour scheme make people feel unwell is certainly something to be avoided.
The other problem with bright colours is that they will tend to lose their colour over time. Good carpet cleaning can arrest this colour loss, but cannot prevent or reverse it completely.
Not only is there a move towards more natural colours, such as dark brown and charcoal, there is also a similar move towards more traditional natural fibres. Instead of synthetic materials, carpet and rug buyers are increasingly looking at more traditional materials such as sisal, which is made from agave plants from East Africa, coir, which is a little rougher than sisal and is made from coconut husks, and jute, a soft plant fibre from South East Asia. Other more exotics choices include seagrass and even paper, not common in Australia, but very popular in Japan – traditional Tatami mats, almost standard floor covering in Japan, are made from woven paper.
These trends reflect a move towards ‘vintage’ – something that is mirrored in fashion in many other areas as well.
What do you think of our take on carpet trends? Do you agree, or have a different point of view? Let us know.