Decorex International 2014
Decorex International 2014
David Smith, Director of Constructive Translations, recently returned from the Decorex 2014 Event held from the 21st to the 24th of September 2014 near Richmond, London. While I was there I took the opportunity to have a chat with some of the exhibitors and learn more about the latest trends in the interior design industry.
I only managed to attend the event for the last two days, but from some of the feedback I received, it sounds like those were the best days to attend. Apparently, the canteen staff hadn’t been keeping up with the orders and the lines were “out-of-control” on the first few days, so they had been replaced with a new team and much shorter lines on the last two days. As I was on my own, carrying a heavy laptop bag, booklets and wearing my suit, I got very hot, and I could really have done with a lot more water fountains around the place. I was also getting bumped around by the numerous visitors, and it was nice on the last day, when it was a bit quieter.
The Decorex Team had a coach running back and forth from Richmond Station to Syon Park, where the event was held. This made it much easier to attend than it would have been if we had had to make the journey ourselves. The staff waiting by the stands were nice and able to answer all my questions easily. Arriving at the event, there was a beautiful feel to the venue. From the colours of the carpets and decoration through to the exhibition by the entrance and the design of the stands, the event was one of the most attractive I’ve ever visited. Compared to the events I normally attend, where the exhibitors just have a poster and some tables and chairs, this was a world apart. Perhaps Earls Court or the ExCel centre could hire some of the Decorex team for the next exhibitions.
So onto the exhibitors. I went through and picked a couple of exhibitors who I thought my readers would be interested in meeting. I won’t comment on any of the products I saw, as I’m not qualified and you can always visit their websites and decide for yourself.
The first individual I chatted with was the amazing Reedah El-Saie from the MICA Gallery. They were far-and-away the friendliest and arguably the most professional of the exhibitors I met. When I approached, they introduced their products to me (a range of contemporary and middle eastern-style products). I asked if Reedah could take a photo and she was kind enough to take a great photo of me in their stand. She also filled me in on her thoughts about the show and what she had seen.
The next person I met was Lorna Hague from Alternative Flooring, a UK company producing high-quality carpets. Having visited their website, and seeing it was only available in English, I asked about the company’s thoughts on using foreign languages or targeting foreign markets. Lorna said that since carpets are such a heavy and large commodity, they don’t currently target the overseas market very much, although of course they offer their services and products to anyone who wants them. This insight, while seeming modest, does tell us something about marketing for language service providers. We need to consider the products our clients are selling as much as their willingness or desire to proactively reach overseas markets. When a client is marketing a product which is going to be difficult to physically get to an overseas market, we should notify them. I felt some of the carpets and, to my totally unqualified hand, they felt fantastic; high-quality British-made carpets.
The next company on my list of companies to meet was Bert Frank. They are a manufacturer of high quality lights. I had a look at some of the products and chatted with the team at the booth. Again, coming from the perspective of a linguist, I asked what they do about the differing standards in different countries with regards to plugs and safety features. The short answer was that the production side have the ability to tailor the process directly for the target customer. Obviously, they would have to make clear that for example the light was going to be used in Belgium or Italy, rather than the UK. From a design perspective, the technical side is something which is done behind the scenes, another interesting insight.
Last but not least, I had a chat with a foreign company, Le Duen Luminaires. This French company design gorgeous bespoke lights as you can see below. Again, I asked specifically how they handle clients in different languages, and Nathalie explained that they never really had any issues. This could be because the manufacturing side seems to be conducted entirely in French, and the English language is only actually used on the sales and marketing side.
So there’s my round up of my stay at Decorex. I hope this article provides some insight to other linguists or people involved in interior design about the event. Honestly, it’s not the perfect fit for our company at the moment, but it’s close to London and affordable so we’ll certainly look forward to joining again next year.