WGSN: How we created an interiors theme park at Heimtextil 2016

Helen Sac and Lisa Douet, WGSN’s Mindset Consultants have spent the last year working with Heimtextil, the biggest international trade fair for home and contract textiles in Frankfurt on an interior theme park, helping bring the interior trends to life, so that consumers can touch, feel and see these trends.

We get the lowdown from them on what went into making this amazing trend park.

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How did you approach the idea of creating something totally new for Heimtextil?

“We’ve been able to create, design and dream up sets and ideas to tell the story of the trends, to help people experience, see touch, smell the trends we’ve curated – it’s one of the most creative and intense projects we’ve ever been a part of.

Earlier in 2015, we came together with six international trend forecasting agencies and innovative materials experts to analyse the direction of 2016/17 and the direction of change, together we discussed and debated the trends that would impact our day to day lives over the course of the next 18 months. From these inspiring few days, we collectively landed on an area that we couldn’t deny was becoming increasingly important. This was the kick off to the season, the first of many trips to Frankfurt throughout the year ” – Helen Sac

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“This project is a bit special for us in Mindset since it is a quite long-term project where we are involved from the beginning to the end in every field of it, from the creative side to marketing, communication and project management of course.

It began in February 2015 and all the hard work will be showcased in mid-January 2016 so it’s almost a year project ! We travelled to Frankfurt every week from November to January, we had hundreds of calls and Skype conferences ; we developed then a wonderful relationship with our client with whom we have been speaking every day for close to a year. From a human perspective as well it is a special project,” Lisa Douet.

2. Why a Theme park?

“The objective was to bring more experience and inspiration through prospective and fresh trends in one hall, displayed in a unique and creative way. So “fun and playful” are definitely part of the objectives for this Theme Park together with pragmatism give tangible and practical ideas for the visitors to inspire them and give them concrete and tangible ideas and tie these back to the key trends for the season” – Helen and Lisa

3. What does the consumer get from a trend theme park that they wouldn’t get from say just reading about a trend?

“I guess what is really interesting in a Theme Park vs. reading about trends, is that they are actually translated in tangible concepts here in the park, something people can actually see, hear touch, experience. A trend is inspirational, conceptual ; but it has so much strength and added value if you manage to experience it and feel it in the reality. In our theme park for Heimtextil, we had the freedom to express 4 trends; each one is very different from one another and expresses a different aesthetic and background inspiration. The scale of the project made the Theme Park special since we are  covering approx. 1,500sqm in a 2,500 sqm space” – Lisa.

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4. Why is Heimtextil so relevant for interiors?

“It’s the biggest international trade fair for home and contract textiles, not only is it one of the first trade fairs of the year, it’s a place where manufacturers, retailers and designers can come together to buy, share and be inspired” – Helen

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5. More brands are creating theme parks/experiences- from Banksy’s Dismaland to Refinery29’s 29rooms- Is a theme park the new venue du jour?

“We can definitely see more and more brands pushing the “experience” lever beyond to offer a unique and disruptive experience to the customer”- Helen Sac.

“People today need to dream, experience and feel the concepts to understand it and really be touched and moved by it – and then remember it ! That’s our goal with the Theme Park that we have created.”

We hope people will be inspired, touched and moved by the experience. And from a business perspective, we also hope the Theme Park will help the visitors/retailers make the most   prospective and smart choices for their future in terms of trends, aesthetics and consumer demand”- Lisa



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Architect for the themepark cocoon: Vasken Yeghiayan

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