Amarestone Natural Stone Blog

Highlights from the Surface Design Show 2015

Posted by Steve Turner on Fri, Feb 13, 2015 @ 09:52 AM

On Wednesday we were at the Surface Design Show 2015 where our MD, Steve Turner, represented the Stone Federation as chairman of the SBID panel discussion on Colour, Trends and Texture in Surface Design.

Thank you to everyone who came along to support the event, we had a great day and hope that you enjoyed it too. For those of you who couldn't be there, here are some of the highlights.

Colours, Trends and Texture in Surface Design seminar

Hosted by SBID (Society of British and International Design), the seminar was one of the headline events at the show for Interior Designers and Architects. At 12:30pm, the seats were full at the Main Stage and the discussion got underway. 

#SDS15 Business Design Centre, Steve Turner Amarestone Colours Trends and Texture in Surface Design


Topics up for discussion included the importance of sustainability in surface design, trends for 2015 and beyond, and whether trends in colour and medium are driven by the consumer, designer or manufacturer.

Trends to note include the merging of interior and exterior spaces (e.g. using the same materials in both internal and external spaces to break down the visual barrier) and increased focus on the longevity of materials used.

The panel generally agreed that there needs to be (and often is) collaboration between the manufacturer, the designer and the consumer when determining a trend. The designer needs to understand what is available or possible so that the right product can be offered to the consumer. The development time of some products can be lengthy and therefore it can be difficult for a manufacturer to respond to trends. However, in the stone industry, for example, the response time can be very short as we can work with the designer and consumer to create bespoke textures and products to order.

Although not yet the most significant element in the decision process, the sustainability of a product is becoming a more important factor when consumers are making their choice.

Despite the resurgence of some artificial materials, mainly for use in commercial projects, the comparatively low environmental impact and aesthetic qualities of natural materials such as wood and natural stone are being recognised by designers more than ever

The general consensus of the discussion was that surface designers now have to take into account a multitude of different factors when specifying materials.

Emanuel Gomes (of Emanuel Gomes and Associates) brought a different standpoint to the panel with his focus on the occupant. As well as meeting criteria such as technical performance and longevity, the designer focuses on the individuality of the person that will be using the space when selecting a material. 

Steve wrapped up the discussion with a Q&A session which gave show visitors the chance to put their questions to the panel. 


Perhaps we can continue the discussion here. Do you have a view on what trends are likely to be prominent in 2015? Please share this article with your network and encourage feedback in the comments section below.

We look forward to hearing from you.


The main stage in the Royal Agricultural Hall (Business Design Centre, Islington). Steve chaired the panel of architects and interior designers for the Colour, Trends and Texture in Surface Design seminar. 

Main stage at the Business Design Centre, #SDS15 Steve Turner Amarestone


Our next event is going to be the NHIS and Home Building & Renovating Show at the NEC, Birmingham on 26-29th March 2015. For free tickets to the show, please contact us

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P.S. did you know that the Stone Federation of GB has set up a club for Interior Designers and Architects where you can get specialist advice on all aspects of Natural Stone plus a variety of other benefits? Click here for further details.


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Topics: events, surface finishes, Stone Federation of GB, design, architect, Stone Federation, natural stone, designer, surface design show, external stone, outdoor, SBID