Industry experts forecast colour and style trends in the laminate industry for 2018
Contrasts, textures and patterns will rub shoulders with natural and matte finishes this year
What are the trend forecasts for 2018?
Shankho Chowdhury: Use of contrasting laminate designs in the interiors. For instance, if the wall panelling is being done with a lighter shade of woodgrain, then the furni-ture (bed) is being done with a dark shade of woodgrain laminate. This trend will continue in 2018 as well. The trend of high- gloss laminates will continue to shine due to its attractive finish and low-on-maintenance feature. CenturyLaminates’ Lucida Kitchen Pro, not only provides one of the best high-gloss finishes and wide range of solid colour options, but also comes with superior features like scuff- and stain-resistance. There is a trend to use two contrasting solid colours in the kitchen area to make it look unique.
Parul Mittal: There are a lot of textures and colours that are trending right now − marble and wood textures are something to look out for. The herringbone and chevron patterns are making a big entrance. Apart from that, we also have the Pantone colour of the year, Ultra Violet, which is definitely something you need to be on the look-out for.
Rachpal Kanwar: This year has many trends to offer in terms of finishes, colours and textures. Stylam has come up with laminates in magnetic finish, mirror finish in various colour options, Flickers designs, Synchro designs and texture. We are also coming up with acrylic solid surfaces, which is going to be a trend in the coming years.
Satinder Chawla: In terms of finishes, products with a very natural and matte finish remain quite popular. These finishes are possible with the use of natural oils that retain the natural earthy feel of wood. Finishes with a slight and subtle gloss, such as silk oil finish, are also gaining strength depending on the design language of the particular project. With regard to texture, open grain finishes are seeing continuing strong demand from the architecture and design segment. Another important trend that we are seeing is the increasing attention on the use of natural, sustainable and healthy materials. With people being more and more sensi-tive about the impact of chemicals on health, there has been a move towards natural as well as benign materials which do not contain harmful chemicals.
Do you adopt sustainable practices for manufacturing laminates and veneers?
Chowdhury: Our wood is sourced from FSC certified forests which are environmentally appropriate and encourage responsible forestry.
Navarun Sen: Our factories are FSC certified and (we) manufacture products using sustainably sourced wood through official channels.
Mittal: At Greenlam, we use resources and materials re-sponsibly and make constant efforts to reduce waste. We do not employ toxic inputs or materials that may be considered unhealthy for the environment, employees, society or users. We keep our emissions and wastes within the statutory guidelines. We have instituted a stringent health and safety policy – resulting in a comprehensive compliance with gov-ernment regulations. We have received FSC & PEFC.
How do laminates and veneers enhance interiors?
Chowdhury: Both veneers and laminates hold a great deal of aesthetic value in residential as well as commercial interior spaces. While there are over 500 designs in CenturyLami-nates portfolio, some of the distinctive textures like cementous, woven textile and natural stones are preferred for specific applications like wall panelling, kitchen or bathroom interiors.
Metallic shades of bronze, burnished copper, nickel in laminates are also being preferred for walls and furniture to give a rustic, antique look to the interiors. Today, due to rapid urbanisation and increasing concrete structures, one segment of consumers prefers the subtle, down-to-earth look – thus natural wood grain designs are prevalent these days. Different characteristics of real wood, such as knots, chisel markings, saw-cuts, makes natural veneers a preferred choice over any other surface material to provide a distinct and rich look to interiors.