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Outdoor Seating: Patterns and colors

Solids and geometrics dominate sling seating, while solids and florals are the most popular patterns on cushion seating, according to casual furniture retailers. When it comes to color, retailers say taupe and beige still sell the best. Looking ahead, more retailers see solids posting even better sales figures on both cushions and slings, with some help from tone-on-tone variations.

When it comes to color, retailers say taupe and beige are the front-runners, hovering just above two-fifths of sales for cushion seating and just below for sling seating. It appears, though, that some consumers are stepping at least a little ways out of the neutral palette — bronze/copper was named the best-selling color on sling seating by 26% of retailers surveyed and red/orange was named as best-selling color on cushion seating by 17% of retailers. Both would have been unheard of as best-selling colors as recently as three years ago.

Retailers are trying to tempt consumers with high-fashion fabrics and trims. Even if they don't sell by the container-load, they serve to create excitement on the floor. Asked whether they placed orders for new looks in fabrics and trims for cushion seating, 51% of retailers said they ordered fabrics such as faux leather or with tassels or other decorative trim. Another 20% confessed they are still considering ordering these high-fashion fabrics.

Best-selling fabric pattern on ...
based on unit sales, 2005

CUSHION SEATING SLING SEATING
percent of retailers projecting increase or decrease* percent of retailers projecting increase or decrease*
* Derived by subtracting percentage of retailers saying sales of pattern are fading from percentage saying sales are growing.
**Most popular "other" pattern mentioned on cushion seating was tone-on-tone, no other pattern was mentioned by more than one retailer; no "other" pattern was mentioned by more than one retailer on sling seating.
floral 34% -21% 7% -37%
solid 33% 30% 44% 38%
stripe 15% -7% 14% -31%
geometric 10% -6% 27% 9%
other** 8% 83% 8% 46%


Best-selling dominant color on ...
based on unit sales, 2005

CUSHION SEATING SLING SEATING
*other includes gold, earth tones, sage, burgundies, reds
**other includes brights and earth tones
***51% placed an order for fashion-forward fabrics and trims for cushion seating
taupe/beige 44% taupe/beige 37%
red/orange 17% bronze/copper 26%
green 14% brown 11%
brown 7% white/ivory 8%
blue 6% black/gray 7%
black/gray 4% green 4%
other* 4% blue 4%
white/ivory 3% other** 3%
yellow 1%


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