Pillows now have an amazing,edgy rock-star glamor! I was impressed with the wide array of pillows and graphic pillowcases at the recent New York International Gift Fair in NYC.
We spotted some new pillow trends at the Gift Fair: handmade, punk and glam luxurious, authentically ethnic, and graphically bold and surprising,
Ethnic. We've always known Company C to be a style leader, and their push this fall and spring is solidly into bright and bold colors. One of these fashion directions is their Ikat damask pillows (see photo at right). These patterns are true to the originals, with blurred edges, yet the designs are distinctively colorful and large scale. Lovely.
One exemplary firm embodying the best of the ethnic pillow trend is HandCrafting Justice, a not-for-profit, Fair Trade economic justice project partnering with women in the developing world. They market women's handcrafts and raise awareness about the root causes of povery, geneder inequality, and social issues.
We loved HCJ's strong, colorful ethnically-inspired pillows (see the Peacock Pillow Cover in the photo below, a beautiful hand-appliqued embroidery work from Sri Lanka). Good pillows and a feel-good cause.
Handmade. There are some amazing examples of the handmade decorative arts, and one outstanding example was Ronel Jordaan's line of "felt stones." Her South African job creation program has been highly successful, and pillows like this Pebble Pillow (see photo below) are made from hand-dyed, carded, and felted merino wool made to look like real rocks from nature!
We also liked the handpainted pillows from Studio 773 in Chicago. Two school chums, Peggy Buege and Megan Dalbey, came together after graduation to create an impressive series of collections. Their Outdoor Line line is great, with fade-resistant handpainting specially to resist the elements, and we also liked the embroidery work on their simple and elegant Bugs pillows (see photo below).
Graphically Bold. We got a kick out of the fanciful graphics Snooze City Designs plastered over pillowcases. Their Guitar Amp pillowcases (see top photo) are examples of the strong, bold graphic patterns we're going to be seeing more of in the coming year with pillows.
Aaron Stewart's Pillow Pillow Pillow pillows (that's like stuttering!) are bold and playful graphics of real pets that have been submitted by PPP's petowner fans. Pictured below is the Titi Cat Pillow, and there are a range of dogs, cats, and other pets to choose from. Let your inner Ace Ventura go wild!
Thomaspaul is perhaps the top master of bold graphic pillows. We found their styles to push the envelope when it comes to design excellence, as in the incredible Greyhound pillow pictured below. NYC necktie designer Thomas Paul Fernez is, in our opinion, the uncrowned king of pillows.
Punk and Glam Luxurious. We like the new line of pillows from oomph! They came out in striking neutrals, luxurious silks and other fabrics, down and feather fillers, hand-sewn quality, and unexpected color combinations which trend towards Pop and Punk style notes (see photo below).
Sylvie Guieysse is a punker at heart, and her heavenly pillow creations merge the boundaries of luxury and edginess. Exhibit A is her Aurora-Purple pillow from her Fairy Tale collection (first photo below); note the rich patterning in her Japanese cotton creation as well as the fairy tale animals and lovely decoration -- but look closer and you'll see the skulls! Exhibit B is her Pink & White pillow from the Couture collection, a mash-up of felted wool masses over luxurious cotton velvet. So chic.