Fashion Week conjures up thoughts of bright lights and big cities like New York and Milan, and how apropos. It never matters what I'm wearing when I hop off a flight to LaGuardia or Newark; I continually feel like I need to step up my wardrobe game. Funny, when I show up at the furniture equivalent, called Market, the only thing I'm left wondering is: why here?!
Yes, for one week each spring and fall, buyers from retail stores, designers, editors, bloggers, and every executive, sales rep and marketing person at a furniture company convene in the thriving metropolis of Highpoint, North Carolina. Triangulated between Greensboro, Raleigh Durham and Charlotte (and absolutely in the middle of nowhere!), you've never seen anything like it; 40,000+ decor junkies and one sleepy middle-American town. I've lost count of how many times I've been, but enough to prove that it's absolutely faster to drive from Toronto than fly because it's nowhere close to being popular enough to have direct air route status nor do flights never go in or out on time. As well most accommodation is less than unappealing (see the stunner of a former Best Western where the $50 room rate soars north of $300/night during market with absolutely no additional value), but there's no place like it. So why High Point?
Apply the old 80/20 rule; the majority of furniture produced or imported into North America hails from the Virginia/North Carolina region. The beauty of why it's the one place in the world you absolutely want to go if you're in the design business: distractions are literally non-existent, and creativity and networking is at an all-time high. With a backdrop of beautiful furniture to inspire all, the absolutely best part is the interaction of passionate people. Showroom visits, dinners, parties and hallways full of friendly faces tending to sore feet! I can't recommend it highly enough; it should seriously be on top of every decor professionals bucket list (get all the details here). If you're not in the biz, but still décor obsessed, you can still participate. Head to Twitter, search #hpmkt and follow along as it happens.
See you October 19th! In the interim, catch up on Spring 2013 decor drool that's now available for sale online and will be in stores this summer.