Maison & Objet 2016: Materials take centre stage
By Laurence Pasquier

The first edition of bi-annual tradeshow Maison & Objet was rich with innovative materials, surface treatments and finishes, says WGSN Lifestyle and Interiors Editor Laurence Pasquier

Jan 26, 2016

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Materials are going to be one of the most exciting areas for 2016.

We have mentioned it before, designers are no longer content with using matter that is already available, so they are increasingly producing their own raw materials. This has given rise to new tactilities, looks, and applications. And as all good news travel fast, the commercial brands who don’t have this option are applying new finishes to existing surfaces, to do the trick and create surprises too.

From innovative handmade composites to revisited vintage finishes, here’s a preview of the products that caught our eye at Maison:


Jonas EdvardJonas Edvard has grown mushrooms into lamps and made chairs from seaweed, but this year he’s released a collection made from limestone. He has reduced the highly friable, easily available material into a powder, mixed it with an eco binder, and obtained a biodegradable material that is hard enough to make any type of furniture, in any given colour.


Vij5Ever heard of NewspaperWood? As the name says, it is layers of old newspapers bound together with a resin, to form a hard base that can then be cut into boards, as from any wood. As the grey of the paper mixes with the colours of the prints, the surface takes on a soft pastel tone, and the thin layers evoke the texture of wood grain. Dutch studio Vji5 has developed this new material with Mieke Meijer, and created its “Tabloid” desks and tables from it.


AlkiFrench company Alki just launched a collection of screens, tables and planters woven with strips of chestnut bark. A visually graphic but also textured series.


Tsubamesanjo-02In a time where we seek inspiration into the simpler lifestyles of the past, Japanese exhibitors Tsubamesanjo presented a range of tableware in stonewashed stainless steel. Other brands – from directional KnIndustrie to more commercial Sabre –  launched collections with the same vintage finish, showing this emerging trend as something set to last.


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