Treasures of Proposte 2016

Stunning Lake Como views.

Proposte is always a wonderful confluence of inspirations - top mills, amazing fabrics, and lovely people make it unmissable.  Add in the beauty of Lake Como, porcini season, and stunning weather, and you really have a special show. For a bit more background, please see Proposte 2015.

The front door to my apartment building, and a glimpse of Lake Como.

This year I stayed again in Como in an adorable AirBnB, and enjoyed my morning commute across the lake each day.  

Inspiring glimpses seen around town.

I share a love of travel with many designers.  There is something about being an a different environment that wakes up the senses and reveals many wonderful and inspiring details, and I always come home with too many ideas!

Intricate terrazzo details from the Proposte Villas.

There were many treasures to be found among the fabrics on show. As last year, the attending mills overflowed the Villa Erba into storefronts and hotels spread throughout Cernobbio and Como. The creme de la creme was on display at every turn.

Cuoium displayed and array of specialty and exotic leathers, including many fish leathers!

Van Maele impressed with beautiful sheers woven of true copper, as well as luxuriously hefty textures.

MUST plays with knits, heavy textures, and other innovative ideas.

Livable, elegant linens from Nelen and Delbeke.

Parry Murray showcased hand-touched fabrics with lovely, earthy character, including innovative discharge prints.

Deltracon's beautiful linens range from special trims to sheers to weighty upholsteries.


- Linen was a major star - heavy textures, usable jacquards and ethereal sheers made a great showing. Wool in many forms made a statement as well.

- Multi-color and color-fleck plains and textures were still looking fresh and emerged as an important evolution of the ongoing love of texture. Earthy handwoven looks dominated.

- Organic motifs, including marble and stone looks, mirrored layouts and woodgrains are still strong.  

- Antiqued, distressed and worn effects were seen in everything from epingle to jacquard to embroidery, and were often used to freshen traditional motifs.

- Complex prints were seen from many vendors. Unusual groundcloths continued to gain depth and interest, and were used in conjunction with digital warp prints, discharge prints, and raised inks. Prints as embroidery grounds created complex compositions.

- Color moved away from clean brights and into layered, sophisticated palettes, with an emphasis on mid-tones.  Pink and yellow-green were seen layered with charcoals, taupes and teals. Warm metallics continued, and the favorite themes of grey, cool neutral, and blue continued their dominance.

- Smaller scale wovens seem to be more important.  These textural jacquards are usually presented in livable, neutral tones and are great for large upholstered pieces.

- Dramatic and over-scaled engineered designs made a statement, in embroideries, prints and wovens.

- Velvets, epingles, and fabrics with pile looks continued the importance of softness and loft.

Always chic, Luilor featured usable textures and of-the-moment looks.

On my last day, I squeezed in and early morning visit to see the amazing trove of antique fabrics at Andre Heget.  An astounding archive tucked into an apartment not ten minutes from the Duomo, and a great source for antique and special textile documents of all kinds.  I found a few spot-on things for a current project; a great way to cap off the show!

Oh the treasures at Andre's!  If only I had a week to explore the range.

Arrivederci, Como.  See you next May!