The European laminate flooring industry offers an impressive range of products for the commercial market including exotic wood, authentic tiles and contemporary fantasy decors. For the second time, the EPLF European Producers of Laminate Flooring organized a joint stand for its members at Contractworld in Hanover on January 12th - 15th, 2008. Attention focused on the latest collections for the season at Stand E 37 in Hall 4 of this flagship event for architecture and interior design. Visitors treated to creative design inspiration for discerning tastes.
Today’s laminate flooring radiates character and natural appeal. Medium brown oak with high sapwood content and reddish brown walnut are perfectly in tune with current trends, and the same applies to pine, a light-colored softwood which has a very expressive texture. Maple and birch add a significantly more rustic touch. Another style is emerging which could aptly be described as Art Design. Treated wood with genuine white pore or whitish patina create an unobtrusive aged look which typifies this trend, and the same is true of darkish red heat-treated wood that looks like as if it were oven-baked.
In stark contrast to wood finishes, classic light shades dominate in the tile segment, finding their expression in white Carrara marble or natural beige stone. An elegant black and white look is the latest trend. It was shown at Europ ean furniture events in 2007, and it is now making its mark on the flooring industry. Dark slate combined with white marble is a trend which makes an extravagant statement.
At Contractworld, laminate flooring producers presented
80 x 80 cm decorative patterns that fit into four broad categories: living (apartments), working (offices), shopping (boutiques, department stores) and enjoying (restaurants, hotels). Wood, stone and fantasy decors all fit very nicely into this new framework. The load and traffic classification and the visual appearance of the design highlights which were on display in Hanover make the flooring the ideal choice for commercial projects. Modern lighting, visual ensembles and background music created an effective ambience for the items on display.
Tomorrow’s laminate flooring design
In a central location at the stand, décor printers who are members of the EPLF community put on a visionary display of future laminate flooring designs. The companies presentes unusual creative decors. These design highlights have never been produced in volume. The list includes black and white pop art, color stripes or digital structural elements, a retro look with geometrical or floral patterns, etched-metal industrial decors with copper and gold effects and even jeans and leather. Creative laminate flooring designers can let their imaginations run free.
Any décor can be used in commercial applications. Contemporary wood finishes tend to be very expressive. The colors and shades create a cozy warm atmosphere, and they are often used for selected areas in restaurants, department stores, hotels, etc. Elegant stone decors in grey, beige or black-and-white as well as contemporary metal-effect industrial decors are found in office buildings, theater foyers and museums. Creative pop art designs may not always be appropriate, but they add a distinctive touch to boutiques, hair stylist salons and Internet cafes. If people like it, you can do it, and the European laminate flooring industry offers a wealth of possibilities.
The following companies were represented at the EPLF stand at Contractworld 2008: Alloc (Norway), Classen Gruppe/ Akzenta Paneele + Profile (Germany), Egger Retail Products (Austria), Hamberger Industriewerke (Germany), Industrias Auxiliares Faus (Spain), Kaindl Flooring (Austria), Kronotex Fußboden (Germany), MeisterWerke Schulte (Germany), NV Spanolux – divisie Balterio (Belgium), Parador (Germany), Pergo Europe (Sweden), Poliface (Portugal), Skema (Italy) and Witex (Germany). The Future Design presentation was a collaborative effort by Bausch Decor, Interprint, Schattdecor, Süddekor (all from Germany) and Lamigraf (Spain).
CD-Rom with photos on request at EPLF