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Beyond the Bale : March 2014
15 OFF-FARM Wool of a broader micron took centre stage at this year's influential Heimtextil trade show, with AWI and its partners presenting the latest in wool products for the interiors sector, including bedding, carpets and furnishings. Held in Frankfurt, Germany, Heimtextil is the biggest international trade show for home and contract textiles -- this year's show attracted more than 67,000 visitors from 133 countries along with 2718 exhibitors. As in previous years, AWI co-hosted the Wool Arena -- a focal point for the industry to promote the fibre at the show -- highlighting the superior natural benefits of wool. It was a place for suppliers, buyers, designers and retailers to meet and discuss new, innovative products and technologies. Along with AWI, Woolmark licensees Jaspa Herington, H. Dawson, Bönning + Sommer, Baur Vliesstoffe and Lano Carpets joined the Wool Arena, presenting their latest wool offerings. attention from potential clients. Quilt manufacturers, mattress producers and also interior design manufacturers and distributors all discovered our stand area." Secretary General of the International Wool Textile Organisation (IWTO), Elisabeth van Delden, said through the participation of AWI and IWTO, the wool industry had a highly visible representation at Heimtextil spreading the message to use wool and creating a first contact for further business opportunities for the industry. "People I have talked to were happy with the outcome of the fair," she said. "There was especially a high interest of new potential customers looking for wool products as an additional premium range. The Wool Lab Interiors trend books were a stopper for people passing by and an excellent starting point for further discussions with potential designers and brands to use wool." AWI category manager for Interiors, Ingrid Oomen, echoed these sentiments, saying the Wool Arena was the epicentre for all things wool at the trade show, and it was great to see such healthy interest in natural fibres. "Wool is definitely a popular fibre in this sector, and showcasing The Wool Lab Interiors was beneficial in ensuring interest remains strong," Ms Oomen said. "Aside from showing The Wool Lab at our booth, we also hosted a special workshop, detailing each of the guide's trends and connecting visitors with suppliers. Companies were able to order fabric samples from the guide during the trade show and we have many more requests from buyers and the media to follow up on. "Shows such as Heimtextil are the perfect way for AWI to showcase not only the variety and versatility of wool, but also ensure the fibre stays relevant to the industry's needs." More information: www.woolmark.com/interiors March 2014 BEYOND THE BALE Interest grows in wool interiors FAST FACTS l The woollen interiors sector remains strong despite ongoing challenging global economic conditions, according to Woolmark licensees at the influential Heimtextil trade show. l AWI co-hosted the Wool Arena with Woolmark licensees at the trade show, during which licensees enjoyed good interest for their products. l There was also strong interest in The Wool Lab Interiors trend guide that was showcased by AWI for the first time at Heimtextil. AWI also showcased The Wool Lab Interiors -- the guide to the best wool textiles and the most interesting and innovative applications of wool in the furnishing and interior textile sectors. The guide is the result of international research carried out by AWI to select the newest products from the world's best companies. It aims to increase the demand for broader micron and crossbred wool. Woolmark licensee H. Dawson has been a regular exhibitor at Heimtextil, and believes that the woollen interiors sector remains strong despite the ongoing challenging economic conditions. "The growing demand and drive towards natural, sustainable and eco- friendly products was ever more evident this year, with the revamped Wool Arena generating more interest, and attracting more visitors than we have found at previous exhibitions," H. Dawson wool trader Genady Fedotov said. "Along with AWI and its partners, we were able to showcase a variety of products and innovations, from the fibre to finished product -- or the sheep to shop journey -- including the new Wool Lab Interiors, which put on display some of the major trends within the wool industry. Overall we feel the Wool Arena is becoming a bigger success story every year, and this was reflected in the comments made tousbyour visitors." Product Manager at Baur Vliesstoffe, Matthias Boehme, commented, "The rejuvenated wool area received widespread The Wool Arena at the influential Heimtextil trade show promoting wool in the interiors sector.