imm cologne 2022: Cosier, greener and smarter ways to sleep easy
imm cologne trend.briefing Sleep: TV format with spotlight on sleepingFor a growing number of people, the bedroom is becoming fully fledged living space and consequently being designed as a whole. imm cologne has pinpointed three of the most important and sustainable trends in connection with sleep: Sleep in Style, Sleep Sustainably and Sleep Better – three trends that are having a huge impact on a growth market.The next edition of the trend.briefing (TV format), will also be all about sleeping.
The bedroom is reinventing itself – with furniture. Designer collections, multifunctional elements, upholstered furniture and decorative design concepts featuring mostly natural materials and textiles and a cosy colour palette are turning the bedroom into the new statement piece of the interior design.
The bedroom is turning into living space | Trend: Sleep in Style
The days when the bedroom was only furnished for sleeping in are long gone; for some time now, it has served as multifunctional living space where we can relax or read, as well as doubling as a dressing room and catwalk to be enjoyed alone or with a friend. And sometimes, it’s even used as workspace. At the same time, however, what was once the most intimate room in the home is increasingly serving prestige purposes as well. Whereas in the past the bedroom was often a neglected space where the suitcases and vacuum cleaner were kept, it is now experiencing a major upgrade and becoming a lifestyle space with a professional interior design.
Up until a few years ago, bedroom ranges were more or less regarded as a specialised area. Nowadays, however, they’re increasingly evolving into an integral part of the overarching interior design. “It’s this holistic approach that’s making bedroom ranges so interesting for designers. That’s also why this segment is having a ripple effect across the entire array of exhibitors at imm cologne,” notes imm cologne director Claire Steinbrück. “And that’s precisely where our strength lies: in Cologne, it’s not just the specialists in our Sleep section who present the technical innovations and furnishings that turn the bedroom into a comfort zone; we show the context the bedroom is embedded in as well – from Connect to Home, from textile brands all the way to design labels – and the contribution made by creatives and manufacturers as a whole.”
Today, bedrooms are again being furnished as thoughtfully and diversely as the boudoirs that added an extra touch of luxury to private homes from the baroque to the 19th century and into the modernist era. It’s not just that the beds themselves are becoming grander and raising the sleeper into an elevated position complete with padded headboard or canopy – more and more types of furniture that have nothing to do with the room’s primary function are moving into the bedroom too. The protagonists are mainly upholstered items like a chaise longue or daybed, armchairs and pouffes, but the good old-fashioned dressing table and trinket cabinet are making a comeback as well. Occasional tables, dressers and consoles provide space for displaying decorative items, and the floor and walls are being brightened up with rugs and wallpaper, plant stands and pictures.
The bedroom goes green | Trend: Sleep Sustainably
What options does the interiors industry have when it comes to producing bedroom furnishings and mattresses sustainably and tapping into the growth market for “green” living? Which viable concepts are already on the market today? The bedroom of the future is healthy, made from renewable materials and recyclable, and in some cases even completely circular – including the mattress.
Fridays for Future, the energy transformation, climate change: ecological awareness and sustainability are no longer elitist terms used only by those with a left-libertarian mindset. They have long since arrived in the middle of our society – not just as a maxim for political action but as a lifestyle too. As a result, sustainable practices and sustainable offerings for consumers are increasingly becoming an economic factor as well. More and more companies are pinning their hopes for success on sustainable raw materials and sustainable production. Especially in the bedroom furniture and mattress segment of the interiors market, where consumers attach particular importance to having a healthy home, we are currently seeing a great many innovative product concepts that are pointing the way forward. The interior world of Sleep at imm cologne 2022 will show how green our bedrooms currently are and where things are headed.
The trade fair as a communication platform about moving towards sustainability
Sustainability is an idea that’s driving an entire industry. Product developments are taking new approaches or using new/old materials and trying circular concepts. The bed sector is embracing an experimental mindset and moving out of its “comfort zone”. In this situation, the industry needs an exchange platform more than ever – a forum where all those involved can discuss the options for a “green” path forward that is economically viable as well. As a result, representatives from industry, retail and Koelnmesse are certain: sustainability will be the talking point at the next furniture and interiors fair in Cologne.
There are plenty of ways in which companies from the interiors industry can act more sustainably. Some are already making climate-neutral products or have switched to climate-neutral production practices. Unavoidable emissions are offset by supporting global climate protection projects. Others are optimising their supply chains or using recycled materials – like plastic waste from the ocean, for instance – or basing their products on renewable raw materials right from the start.
Circularity as the next big challenge for the mattress industry
However, in addition to sustainable attributes like longevity, low- or zero-carbon production methods or natural materials, circularity is becoming an increasingly important criterion for mattresses too. That means they have to be developed from circular materials and with a circular product design in order for the original materials to be reused without any loss of quality once the mattress’s “first life” is over. “Product developers have to rethink mattresses,” advocates Martin Auerbach, Managing Director of the German Mattress Industry Association (Fachverband Matratzenindustrie e.V.). “The first question is: Which materials and technology can I use to make my product in such a way that it stays within the loop? The next step is to use the answers to that question as a basis for achieving the same familiar product characteristics that are already valued by retailers and consumers alike,” he continues. That’s due in no small part to the fact that the generation of consumers currently coming of age wants to transfer its green conscience to manufacturers and retailers as well. And a bedroom equipped with sustainable furniture made of natural materials is healthier not just for its users but for the environment too. And that’s surely the best way to sleep easy.
The future of sleep | Trend: Sleep Better
How can sleep be optimised? In search of the perfect sleep solution, the interiors industry is joining the quest for the magic formula. Ergonomic features are increasingly being supplemented with smart functions in order to deliver more added value for discerning customers: beds, mattresses and modern mattress systems are offering not just comfort but smart additional functions that influence the quality of their users’ sleep. And sales advice is increasingly relying on smart technology too.
The message is gradually spreading: insufficient or poor-quality sleep is a health risk. Since the corona pandemic, everybody knows that not getting enough sleep is bad for the immune system. Even so, widespread sleep deprivation is a phenomenon that seems to be increasing rather than declining. Trend researchers are already warning that fatigue could become the new obesity. And it’s a fact that permanent sleep deprivation increases the risk of obesity, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and other health impacts. Healthy and health-promoting sleep is becoming a desirable commodity – all the more so because, in industrial nations, this once normal routine isn’t normal at all any more: studies have found that only about one third of adults get the eight hours of sleep that researchers consider optimal, and according to a 2020 report by health insurer DAK, every second German says they suffer from sleep problems.
When it comes to the causes, the main suspects are the sensory overload and stress associated with our modern lifestyle, as well as the generally heightened level of agitation as a result of media consumption and digitalisation. Especially in the crisis we are currently experiencing, many people find it difficult to switch off and unwind. In light of all this, the exhibitors at the international furniture and interiors fair imm cologne are joining the discussion about holistic concepts that aim to ensure the ideal combination of sleeping environment, bed and mattress systems, as well as smart technologies, in order to deliver products that are an optimal fit with their users’ individual needs. “Sleep is appreciated again,” says imm cologne director Claire Steinbrück, summing up this behavioural and consumer trend for the bed segment. “But in our highly complex world, it seems as if it’s not necessarily becoming any easier to get it. For mattress and bed manufacturers, that opens up new markets for products that benefit sleep quality.”
Sleep culture is changing
The lucid dreaming trend suggests that sleep is increasingly being perceived as an experience again. Nevertheless, according to experts, sleep itself and our dependency on it won’t change much in future. Instead, however, cultural developments like the home working trend and changing environmental conditions (such as global temperature rise) could result in the afternoon nap playing a more important role again. Then power napping in public might come back into fashion in our part of the world too – the fact that daybeds are making a comeback and major airports are offering travellers sleeping pods could be interpreted as the first signs of this development.
The bed of the future combines intelligently designed and individually configured bed and mattress systems with smart assistants so as to deliver a bed that rocks the individual user to sleep and ensures they sleep through the night. Smart tools monitor their sleep, suggest changes in behaviour, regulate ambient temperatures or intervene by automatically adjusting the sleeper’s position when they are restless or snoring.
Whether it’s designed for tech-savvy users or purists who prefer to put their faith in tips from sleep coaches: smart technology will become part of all good sleep systems. As an analysis and advice tool, it has long been part of the innovation culture of an industry that doesn’t sell beds anymore, but a good night’s sleep.
On Thursday, 24 June 2021, the imm cologne will launch the trend.briefing Sleep. The TV format with a spotlight on sleeping can be accessed at https://www.imm-cologne.com/magazine/trend-briefing . In addition to the broadcast of the trend.briefing, a content folder with the trend news will be available in the magazine by imm cologne and in the news section of the imm cologne website.
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