The American furniture industry has taken some tough hits from foreign competitors in the past few years. Pitted against cheap overseas labor, and with the North American tannery industry essentially vanished, it’s taken some time for “Big Furniture” to catch its breath and calibrate its next step.
Traditionally based throughout North Carolina and western Ohio, furniture manufacturers have made a lot of sacrifices to stay competitive in the global game, but it seems to be working. Take for example the La-Z-Boy plant in Dayton, TN, where one proud plant owner boasts, “You can buy our basic recliner today for about the same as what you could in 1973… With all of the increases in the cost of raw materials, labor, energy and other expenses, how many other manufacturers can say that?”
In summary, furniture in North America appears to be holding its own, which is a good thing for companies either building furniture itself, or building parts that eventually find their way into furniture pieces. Because in the meantime, the furniture consumer market in the United States and Canada remains strong as ever. Urged on by fashion magazines with pictures and articles about the latest trends in home décor and interior furnishing design, North Americans spend an enormous collective fortune on furniture from year-to-year.
Speaking of home fashion trends, one of the key “looks” for home interiors this year has been identified as “quiet luxury.” According to Suzanne Dima, editor-in-chief of House & Home, “It’s a new kind of glamour that’s quiet and contained.” And while it’s always nice to be able to splurge on furniture, the look and feel of “quiet luxury” needn’t be achieved by maxing out three credit cards. Dima goes on to note “that it’s the little touches that make the biggest impact, like taking a set of ready-made curtains and sewing a beautiful trim to the bottom or adding custom detail to a sofa skirt.”
One element identified with today’s “quiet luxury” is that of tufted chairs and couches. With patterned plastic buttons that keep furniture materials firmly in place, tufted chairs and couches are an easy way of achieving one of the best new looks in town. Since we at New Process Fibre manufacture the plastic buttons that go into tufted furniture production right here in the U.S.A., we couldn’t be happier that this long-time specialty of ours is now associated with a nationwide fashion trend. “Quiet luxury” is intended to be a look that stands the course of time in homes, just as our own plastic parts for home furniture are built to last for the long run. If you’re a North American furniture manufacturer looking to take advantage of one of 2013’s most-predicted fashion trends, you could do well to contact our sales department here at New Process. When it comes to making buttons for tufted furniture, we’ll be sure to “hook you up.”