Sustainability, more-is-more… and grandmillenials

At the end of 2019, writer David Bryan Nash – who reports regularly on the San Francisco Fall Show – wrote a feature for Architectural Digest on the major furniture trends we would be seeing in 2020. Top of the list: antique furnishings! According to David: older pieces not only look great but are also an easy way to integrate sustainable products into the home. Tamara Rosenthal, Sotheby’s VP of Marketing, says an uptick in antiques sales reflects changing attitudes toward the environment and consumption. “People are becoming increasingly mindful of how their shopping habits and daily lives are impacting the environment. Because of that they are finding ways to curb this impact and be more eco-friendly.” Simply put: the antiques trade is the oldest recycling business in the world – buying antiques reduces landfill, carbon emissions and consumption of new goods from abroad – as well as the ultimate in terms of preserving our heritage for future generations. We could not agree more…

From San Francisco dealer epoca: 1960’s bronze and leather campaign chair designed by Otto Parzinger for Maison Jansen

Anna Brockway, cofounder and president of Chairish sees a broader return to traditional décor in interiors with classic shapes; beloved prints from established design houses; landscapes and portraits in substantial frames; wallpaper, tapes, and trims to create rooms that feel exuberant, layered, and full. Chairish fan favorites include pieces from Maison Jansen, Maitland Smith, Piero Fornasetti, and Fortuny. We spotted all of these names at past San Francisco Fall Show editions! In October 2019, the New York Times added its voice to the conversation with a piece highlighting the growing prevalence of Victorian style, particularly within home furnishings. The article piggybacks on a more-is-more moment that’s been rapidly spreading throughout the design industry, a resurgence of pretty, layered, charming, and personality-rich interiors. This seems to be a cross-generational thing as well: writer and House Beautiful senior features editor Emma Bazilian coined the term Grandmillennial, a young-ish, Instagram-posting, décor aficionado with a passion for floral chintzes, Sister Parish interiors, heirloom hand-me-downs, and more.

Photo courtesy of dealer Charles Plante

While San Francisco Fall Show Chair Suzanne Tucker is not a big believer in trends – here today, gone tomorrow – she does feel that it’s time to update our furniture mix of antiques with contemporary pieces, the classics with the new:

“The world of antiques and furnishing a room as our parents knew it, that’s a set of rules that is now thankfully gone. My clients are a sophisticated lot and expect me to create timeless, highly personalized homes for them. So, do not have all-matching styles! Upholster the old pieces with a contemporary pattern. Create a modern interior but throw in one piece that has a beautiful finish of age and patina. When it comes to antiques, I believe that one should always have at least one piece with some age in a room – and you don’t want to be the oldest thing in your room 😊”.

From Earle D. Vandekar: vintage French metal and glass bar cart, mid 20th Century

by Vera Vandenbosch