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TexStyles India: big attraction.

NEW DELHI, India -- TexStyles India, held here earlier this month, is garnering growing interest from overseas buyers, particularly those from the U.S.

The show, now in its fourth year, attracted about 10,000 visitors, 2,300 of whom came from overseas, double the number from last year.

The largest overseas buying contingent came from the U.S., followed by Great Britain, Japan, France, Spain and Germany. Total on-site orders, according to the India Trade Promotion Organization, tallied an estimated $108 million, up 50 percent over last year.

The 300 exhibiting companies offered buyers a wide selection of fabrics and home textiles that keyed into worldwide trends such as textured base cloths, rich colorations and metallics as well as offerings featuring the traditional intricate craftsmanship of Indian textiles.

Visitor response at TexStyles India '98 was, for the most part, positive.

"It is a very good fair," said Joel R.Crisp, vice president for wovens development with Robert Allen of New York. Crisp said the company has been sourcing from India for the past 15 years.

"The Indian market is very creative," Crisp said, adding he had placed buying orders at the fair.

Yannick Loaec, manager with the French buying house Jardin d'Ulysse added, "Everything is improving at the show -- the displays, the designs."

Loaec said his company had been buying fabrics and furnishings from India for 10 years, and he was looking for home furnishings. He said he too had placed orders.

Said Annie Selke, president of Pine Cone Hill Fine Linens in Richmond, Mass., "I'm amazed at the variety of beautiful handwork I find in India. Especially the embroidery -- it really gives our products a very different look. We sell to the upmarket and are constantly looking for ways to make our products look and be special."

The fair featured a Trend Forum that projected world trends for 1999. The pavilion was set up to help manufacturers and exporters plan their products for the next several seasons. One such exhibitor here was the Indian government-run National Institute of Fashion Technology, where the forecast was "unity of simplicity and the ornamental."

The organization predicted the color palette for the upcoming season would be heavy with gold, bronze, silver and all metallic tones. Fabrics would range from ornate jacquards to brocades, taffetas, moires, satins and velvets. Lustrous fabrics such as chenille and fleece and natural fibers were important for the coming season. Prints were making a strong statement.

Nutan Khurana, assistant designer with Trend Vision, another Indian-run trend company, forecast that colors for interiors would include green, denim blue and red combined with animal prints.

She said African motifs would return in different color combinations. Trendy designs would be abstracts and micro animal prints.

Overall, natural fibers like cotton, linen and hemp are here to stay. In prints, botanicals and fresh florals are strong.

In terms of color, bright tones of lime green, yellow, mint, blue and purple were particularly well received by U.S.

Buyers from parts of Europe, specifically Germany and France, favored naturals and neutrals with an occasional splash of burgundy and gold. Japanese and Far Eastern buyers gravitated toward eco-friendly tones of olive and naturals mixed with occasional splashes of bright green, blue and yellow.

In window coverings, looks here were soft and easy, a departure from tailored pieces. Crushed velvet in rich tones of maroon, gold and purple, enzyme-washed velvets and colorful hand-loomed checks and plaids were used for curtain panels.

Cotton and silk jacquards in jewel tones and heavier textured fabrics were favored by both the U.S. and European markets. A new look emerging here was panels accented with embroidery, contrasting fabric edging and trims like fringes and tassels used across the top.

In sheers, however, white-on-white, creamy naturals teamed with white, and a range of beige tones were the continuing trend. Soft cotton fabrics like organza, crisp voile, crepe, and tissue net, for example, were popular for sheers. Translucent weaves ideal for curtains or coordinates were shown in an array of fine jute, silk and jute and cotton blended fabrics.

What sets India apart is its enormous variety of labor-intensive hand work. Ethnic Kantha and delicate chikan embroidery, patchwork, appliques, sequins, the ever-popular wood block prints, bead work and embossing were all available in drapery.

Sheers aimed at the U.S. market were shown pin tucking, white-on-white or colored embroidery, latticework, color blocking, metallic printing, tissue embroidery, bead work, edged with satin borders or double layered to achieve a unique two-color effect.

This year, trends in sheers were scripting in gold on white or gold on navy, Renaissance patterns and gold embossing. Popular motifs included dragonflies, beetles, and butterflies as well as an assortment of leaf patterns in both hand and machine embroidery.

Hand-block printed bed linens are still important, particularly in Europe where they are sold with coordinated drapery and other finished products. Increasingly, manufacturers are using machine washable fibers for easy care. Soft, cotton-filled comforters and duvets with block-printed voile covers on black and neutral were shown.
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Title Annotation:1998 textiles exhibition draws more buyers
Author:Angelo, Maitreyee B.; Rao, N. Vasuki
Publication:HFN The Weekly Newspaper for the Home Furnishing Network
Date:Feb 23, 1998
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