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Does it come in beige?

Marketplace Staff Oct 5, 2007


Scott Jagow: In High Point, North Carolina this week, it’s all about couches and tables and dressers. The International Home Furnishings Market is one of the biggest furniture shows in the world.

With the housing market the way it is, we thought it’d be interesting to see what furniture companies are selling this year. What we found is . . . well, kind of dull. Jessica Jones reports from North Carolina Public Radio.

Jessica Jones: This year, there’s a common motif running through the Furniture Market’s 13 million square foot showroom.

Ray Allegrezza: Fortunately or unfortunately, we really are swimming again in a sea of tans and browns.

Ray Allegrezza edits Furniture Today, a weekly trade magazine that covers the industry. He says home prices aren’t the only barometer reflecting how bad the housing slowdown is.

Allegrezza: Every time the economy gets soft, at least on the upholstery side, the suppliers come to market with subdued, neutral tones.

That’s because manufacturers don’t want to risk getting stuck with bold-toned furniture that might not appeal to a broad cross-section of shoppers.

Allegrezza: You know, they don’t want bright, lipstick-red sofas.

But well-heeled shoppers needn’t worry — you can still get that hand-polished, lemon-yellow credenza for a mere 12 grand.

For Marketplace, I’m Jessica Jones.

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