What kind of furnishings do women really want for their homes?
For years, furniture designers and manufacturers (who are predominantly male) have longed for the ability to answer that question and to create furniture that women dream about for their homes.
In recent years, the “disconnect” between a largely male industry and the women shoppers who make over 80% of furniture purchase decisions has improved. The industry has sought to be more responsive and understanding of female preferences through consumer research and by hiring and cultivating more women in management and product development roles.
And now, thanks to the world’s fastest-growing social media website Pinterest an online pinboard that allows users to organize and share things they love, a window has been opened into the heart, mind and homes of women.
Extensive research on Pinterest by Hooker Furniture’s Director of Merchandising Cindy Hall inspired our new Chic Coterie collection that combines fashion and function with a feminine appeal to capture a lifestyle that “women shoppers are craving,” Hall said. “Through Pinterest, women are telling us exactly what they want in their homes. This is a powerful tool to see inside the aspirations of women.”
Chic Coterie is a new 40-piece collection of timeless, versatile and livable home office, home entertainment, dining room, and accent furniture that will be introduced at the Fall High Point Market that opens October 13.
As Hall explains, ‘chic’ means stylish or smart fashion, while ‘coterie’ refers to a group of people with a unifying interest. In this case, the unifying force is Pinterest, whose monthly users now number over 11.7 million, 97% of whom are female, primarily in their mid 20s to mid 40s, according to research recently published by Simply Zesty and Modea. Home Decorating is one of the top three themes on Pinterest, along with Bridal/Fashion and Food.
After spending hours browsing pinboards of home, furnishings and décor, Hall saw several themes emerge such as the blending of soft white and brown tones for a “layered neutral” look, a vintage feel with modern function and chic motifs and design elements. She pulled together these themes to create a mood board to inspire the furniture design process.
“What we saw is that women are pulling together this look they want through mixing antiques with pieces from flea markets and some stores, but there is nowhere they can go to get the whole look. That’s what we wanted to provide in Chic Coterie.”
After creating an actual mood board, Hall has now started a virtual mood board on our Chic Coterie Pinterest board.
In a fascinating “behind the scenes” look at the furniture design process, here’s how a photo Hall found on Pinterest led to furniture design drawings and eventually pieces in the new furniture collection:
Notice the “half wheel” motif in the Pinterest photo and how it found life in this curio cabinet:
“Our approach to this collection was to make each piece unique, decorative, feminine and functional,” Hall said. “We believe that women want a home that is comfortable and peaceful, yet stylish and hip.” The two soft finishes—Vintage White and Posh Brown – also help capture the romantic yet ‘on-trend’ feel of the collection.
While each office, dining, accent or entertainment piece is a multi-functional silhouette, each piece is also a “pretty, stand-alone statement piece,” said Hall. Perhaps the most iconic piece in the collection is this “stacked” decorative lateral file that epitomizes the merger of form and function. The bottom two drawers are lateral files and the top drawer includes felt-lined jewelry storage and other organization features:
Need help organizing your busy household? A signature piece of the collection is a vintage-styled Home Organizer to help women do just that. The piece can be used in a home office, kitchen, hall or family room. It features three file drawers across the bottom, four box drawers in the center, a flip down keyboard drawer, a pop-up charging station with 2 plug-ins and 2 USB outlets as well as felt lined jewelry trays.
This piece may just rival the family dog as a woman’s new best friend!
Today’s woman does a lot of work at home, either professionally or just running the household and paying bills. The demand for feminine home office pieces has never been greater, and Chic Coterie answers that demand with two decorative and functional home office desks:
The writing desk features a captivating Baroque-styled base with pierced fretwork. This motif, seen originally on Pinterest, is featured in living room tables, dining tables and the writing desk in the collection.