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Christine Allison On Our First Dallas Design Survey

Responses to our first Dallas Design Survey were hilarious, thought provoking, and catty as hell.
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Dear Reader
Designers Speak Out


Everyone loves mail, and I’m no exception. So you can imagine how excited I was when responses to our design industry survey started pouring into the office. For this, our first designer issue, we asked more than 2,800 local licensed designers a series of provocative questions. The hundreds of thoughtful and often hilarious responses we received made for many nights of great reading.

I pondered the responses to one question in particular. We asked designers for their take on current trends—and a fair number of people responded as I might have, offering the I’m-pure, you’re-not answer: “I don’t believe in trends.” Of course one doesn’t believe in trends, like a religion or some such, and I agree that words such as “trendy” and “must-have,” are problematic—okay for fashion but pretty dumb in the world of home and design. My point is that there’s an important difference between trends and trendiness. Trends, in a curious way, are a form of discovery. When designers as a group investigate and promulgate certain colors, styles, textures, and decorating techniques at certain times, it’s not so much an act of oppression, but an expansion of the world of possibilities. The pairing of chocolate brown with ice blue or pale pink is one example. Until three or four years ago, no one routinely combined chocolate brown with pastels; now it is part of the color vernacular. I suppose one can abuse a trend and apply it willy-nilly (and thus, oh dear, reduce it to trendy), but who does that?

Whether you’re a designer, client, or member of the industry, I hope you’ll spend some time reading the results of our 2004 Dallas Design Survey, beginning on page 60. Designers—trendy or not—are great fun. They’re passionate, intense, devoted, and occasionally prone to drama, but out of this temperament emerges the keepers of beauty. We salute our designers and the showrooms, stores, and craftsmen who serve them. Enjoy this issue, and let me hear from you.


Christine Allison
Editor and Publisher
[email protected]

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