Maison & Objet 2019 in Paris: Our First Impressions

Maison & Objet 2019 in Paris is over and it was an impressive and diverse fair again. It was big, colorful, opulent and offered the products for all furnishing segments. From furniture of all kinds for indoors and outdoors, lamps, wall coverings, tiles, home textiles, decorative accessories, tableware, table runners, gifts, jewelry to fashion accessories and sculptures.

The diversity was overwhelming and offered visitors a comprehensive insight into the Western European furniture and furnishing market. Especially for fans of opulent, slightly nostalgic ambience there was a lot to see. In halls 6 and 7 many big brands of the French market were present. Hall 8 focused on the most luxurious pieces: companies such as Fendi, Baccarat, Porada, Ritz Paris, Luxxu and Munna exhibited their luxury collections here. We’d like to report on trends and our impressions.

Among others, it was the art déco revival trend that we predicted in our latest trend report, which we came across very frequently at the Maison & Objet 2019.

Bold colors on upholstered furniture, opulent lighting and decorations created a historic and welcoming atmosphere. Again, we saw many novelties and ideas. It was striking for us as Germans, that manufacturers and dealers put in a lot of effort to make their presentations as complete and realistic as possible. Where at German fairs the focus often lies at the product itself – on gadgets, properties, variants and colors, in France it was rather the ambience in which the product is later seen.

The booth of Hamilton Conte at Maison & Objet 2019: right the new cabinet "Biscornet" u. a. and amongst other the lamp "Ariane".

The booth of Hamilton Conte at Maison & Objet 2019: right the new cabinet “Biscornet” and among others the lamp “Ariane”.

There were dealers who furnished entire living rooms with items from various manufacturers and thus created a homely atmosphere. And, of course, that’s where the sales talk started right there. The attention to detail with which the stands were staged was impressive. Carpeting, wall coverings, window outlets, lighting, pictures and even a laid table – often everything was conceptually put together in different “rooms”. So the visitor immediately knew how he could later use the presented products in the store or for the next interior project.

Another look at a unique booth at Maison & Objet 2019 with Art Déco flair.

The fair was certainly an event with wow effect and almost endless inspirations, especially for architects, retailers and buyers and homestagers. One could say that the French have the better “savoir-vivre” with regard to the fair presentations. And there is nothing to apologize for here – hinting at this year’s theme: “Excuse my French“.

Many companies at the Parisian Maison & Objet invited trade visitors with extravagant presentations.

We love the elegant French implementation and the openness with which they give the visitor the feeling of being welcome. Now it may be assumed that the French, English or even Southern European market works differently, however we find that German manufacturers can certainly take a closer look. More courage, less detachment, more empathy with the needs of the customer, who is sure to find new inspiration for his own projects at a trade fair visit.

Another plus point for the Maison & Objet in Paris: the diversity of the product portfolio.

On the German market you’d probably have to visit three fairs to cover the product range of the Maison & Objet. Well, not every boutique shopper buys furniture or vice versa: not every furniture buyer is interested in boutique items and fashion accessories. But if you sell tables, you might want to think about selling the dishes or the carpet underneath. This potentially secures additional sales and reflects the competence of the end customer, as our neighbors in France have recognized. The conceptual idea has always been present at Maison & Objet. One could assume that it is probably because of the fact that the French or Western European market just has more specialized trade density than Germany.

But in fact, that doesn’t matter: the uncertainty that many have when setting up their home, it will be even more important in the future to have competent staff on the sales floor, who knows what is possible and how to stage it. That’s exactly why a trade fair like Maison & Objet offers a perfect platform.

The trade visitor can comprehensively and quickly find all the products for a specialist retail store in the interior and accessories industry. He can also see immediately which products can best be integrated in diverse interior design styles.
Christine HillerTrend analyst

The structure of Maison & Objet may seem a little confusing at first, but considering the points just explained, it’s quite logical that a furniture manufacturer was placed next to a wall covering manufacturer and an accessories dealer with vases and decorative items. It’s about seeing the whole interior: not just the single product. The “Craft” area in the heart of the fair showed craftsmanship at its finest: jewelry, sculptures, handbags, lighting, dishes, vases – it was a very extensive selection.

The Italian label Rina Menardi presented its current table collections in the "Craft" section of Maison & Objet 2019.

The Italian label Rina Menardi presented its current table collections in the “Craft” section of Maison & Objet 2019.

There was also space for “smart” products. These were mainly found next to the gift articles in halls 2 to 3. The organizers provided a well-rounded supporting program.

As already described in our previous article, there was the “What’s New” area again this year, where visitors could find out about trend products in the various halls. The Rising Talents area, which focused on Asian designers this time, was placed in front of the press center and hall 6, so that almost every visitor could pass by and talk to them.

Sebastian Herkner was designer of the year (we reported) and explained on his special area how important it is for him as a designer to convey to the customer what lies behind the finished product: in some cases hard day-long work. Dedicated craftsmanship. Without this craft, many designs could never be produced in such a perfection. And this was clearly presented by the product designer on the basis of some of his products.

All in all, the Maison & Objet 2019 in Paris is a recommended addition to buyers and retailers, interior designers, interior decorators and trendy people who don’t want to show just a classic modern assortment in their stores. The Maison & Objet showed itself particularly inspirational this year and for that we thank the exhibitors and the organizer. We’re looking forward to the second edition in autumn of this year.

More pictures from our research at the fair can be viewed on Pinterest in the coming days. Also, look forward to a short video for more impressions of Maison & Objet 2019 which we’ll release soon.

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