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Date published: March 03 2016

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Twice a year the quiet city turns into the furniture capital of the world, says Dr. Rosa Otero

A we, excitement, enthusiasm - like you’d find in a small child taking in the magic of Walt Disney World for the first time - these are the emotions that I see on the faces of my Salem College design students every time we visit High Point Market. Every year, these students eagerly await the opportunity to connect and network with designers and industry professionals through the Market’s remarkable number of showrooms and the abundance of first-class, groundbreaking products from all over the world.

Twice a year, the intimate and quiet city of High Point, North Carolina, turns into the furniture capital of the world and screams the latest in home furnishings and fashions. During Market time, serious faces, exotic accents, and creative minds gather together and transform High Point into a cosmos of unimaginable energy. Born as the Southern Furniture Market in March 1909, the biannual High Point Market is the largest and most important home furnishings trade show in the entire world. With more than 2,000 exhibitors spread out over 11.5 million square feet of showroom space, the Market attracts exhibitors and visitors from all over the world.

In the words of Market veteran Gary Inman, High Point Style Spotter and Vice President of Hospitality with Baskervill, “There is a unique synergy that occurs during Market between product designers and interior designers, members of the press, manufacturers, and sales teams.

The atmosphere is frantic and energizing, inspiring, and educational. It is absolutely the best event in the U.S. for assessing new trends, and I love the fact that I can connect with my colleagues.

During a typical visit, we go first to the International Home Furnishings Center, the main building, and then to Showplace. These are two of the largest buildings housing some of the Market’s 2000 exhibitors. Time is very limited, but the students want to see everything. “We never know what to expect,” I’ve heard them say.

Over the years, Salem design students have developed a list of their favorite showrooms. This list includes the showrooms of companies such as the Phillips Collection, Thayer Coggin, Bassett, and Baker.

At the Market, there are a great number of educational events scheduled for members of the industry. Additionally, anybody can benefit from a stop at the Bernice Bienenstock Furniture Library. Located in the historic Grayson House, this library houses more than 5,000 books and publications.

As current Salem College student Kaleigh Workman puts it, “the High Point Market shows us a potential avenue to pursue in our future careers and field. We get the chance to communicate with seasoned designers and their associates, including recent college graduates, in a range of showplaces from all over the world.”

High Point Market and the city of High Point, with their magical genius loci, have given rise to an original vision. They have created a vibrant place in the design community, where people can develop new relationships and cultivate existing ones as they keep up with trends in the industry. their career development.

Author: Dr. Rosa Otero

Company: Salem College

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