Kind + Jugend explores trends in the juvenile market
The international baby and children's outfitting sector will be meeting in Cologne September 10 to 13 for the world's biggest trade fair: Kind + Jugend. More than 1,000 exhibitors from over 50 countries will present a host of innovations and product further developments.
In addition to multi-functionality, safety, and sustainability, the theme "digitalisation" is becoming increasingly more important when it comes to the development and sales of new products. Kind + Jugend covers all the trends of the baby and children's sector and presents them to representatives of the international markets.
An overview of trends for 20156 includes:
Standard is out, individualisation and customising are in.
This is apparent in all segments of the market. Consumers want to live with their own styles and create space for their needs and ideas. The theme sustainability is still a strong focus of young parents. Trust in tested products that are manufactured under health and environmentally-friendly considerations play a big role overall. "Digitalisation" is also increasingly more significant in children's rooms, for example in the case of multifunctional care products, which are linked with smartphone technology.
Functional diversity in (furniture) design
When choosing baby and children's furniture, parents place great importance on the perceived high value of a product. When purchasing items, consumers pay attention to ecological production methods that focuses on health and eco-friendly considerations. The first emission label worldwide that is developed by the DGM (German Seal Community Furniture) provides assistance here. Tested furniture is checked for certain substances and subsequently classified in classes A to D. If furniture manufacturers want to carry the label permanently, all of their so identified furniture has to pass follow-up tests annually in the first three years and thereafter every two years.
Furniture made of solid woods such as spruce, beech, birch, ash, and oak; part wood and solid wood combinations, as well as MDF programmes are also popular. White is still very popular, but also strong are grey and brown shades, pastel colors for accents, and dark elements. Classic wood shades, in 'pure wood' or in combinations between light oak and chalk white, light birch and white, or grey and white are examples of populat trends. Surfaces are oiled, glazed, waxed, or matt varnished to produce a high-gloss finish. More favourably-priced and easy-to-clean wooden imitations are still proving popular.
Furniture design is frequently modern, timeless, and simple so it can be used for a long time and combined with other pieces. Durability and multifunctionality still play a big role in the choice of furniture for children's rooms. Whereas high flexibility is demanded in professional and private everyday life, consumers want to create a feeling of continuity in their homes. A child''s bed can be converted into a junior bed or a baby changer can be transformed into a sideboard. Later on, a foldaway bed doubles as a bench, a child's bed, a wicker cot, a doll's baby changer, a high chair, or playing table or desk. The focus is still on children's rooms that can be changed as required.
Strollers for every lifestyle
The demand for safety and quality, lightness, flexibility, and compactness are as high as ever in the stroller segment: popular models allow many consumers to purchase only one stroller/stroller system that can be used from birth until the end of the child's stroller years.
Innovative child car seats
Safety, functionality, and seating comfort are key criteria for new child car seats. Simple operation also plays a major role for the end users. Manufacturers continue to develop innovations that reduce the force of impact and the burden on the child sitting in the seat. Since children develop differently in terms of their physical build, size, and weight, adjustable seats enable them to be used for a longer period of time. It is obligatory to transport children up to the age of 15 months facing backwards and a side impact test is compulsory. Older children can be safely transported in so-called reboard seats. A higher side-impact protection is important, which is made possible by special systems with the patented usage of shock-absorbing PU foam and high head and side panels. Special shoulder padding and anti-tip systems reduce forward motion. A new model tests the right safety belt tension while driving and is equipped with an acoustic indicator and a light display. .
Numerous features such as click systems, sound, and light/color indicators help users install child car seats faster and take it out of the car and place it on the frame of a pram or rocker. Memory foam technology, which adapts perfectly to suit the shape of a baby's body and allows a simple and one-handed adjustment of the seat into the reclining position, also guarantees comfort and safety.
Care and hygiene with latest technology
Numerous developments in the hygiene segment of the market offer comfort and safety as well as the highest level of quality. Manufacturers offer height-adjustable and foldable bath stands or ergonomically-shaped baths with a water level display, holding points for the baby and supports for the bath. Numerous products are equipped with digital technology: sensors, cameras, LEDs, or microphones ensure additional safety. For instance, the device of one manufacturer combines a baby phone with an MP3 player and a music box.
The focuson toys lies in the development of babies and small children. New products demonstrate how logic, language, and skills can be promoted in a playful manner. The materials used here include fabrics, plastics, and wood. Among playful items are puzzles, pegging games, pushing, pulling, and pedal vehicles as well as scooters that small children can stand up on, cuddly, hand-flattering, and bedtime toys as well as action toys made out of a wide range of materials. Small pliable figures are available for role-playing games. Play mats with music, lights, and natural sounds allow children to play lying down on their back or stomach. Babies get learn about water while playing with a water play mat. Little toys such as stars, fish, or flowers float around in a mat filled with water, which the baby can move with its hands. The trend towards digitalisation is also found in the toy segment for children from ages 0-4.
Textiles - style with details
Textiles found in the juvenile market comply to ecological and biological standardsl as well as meeting safety, comfort, and well-being requirements. Textiles that are durable, abrasion-resistant, waterproof and fast-drying are favored for various puposes. For example, textiles made of bio-cotton, hemp, and bamboo are popular as manufacturers seek resource-saving and innovative production processes and materials. Materials with reflective imprints are just as trendy as three-dimensional woven or knitted structures and a mottled look. Natural and earthy colours combined with designs in bright colors and patterns are also in high demand.
The wide range of sleeping bags, baby carriers, and baby slings also demonstrate a well-conceived interplay between fashion and function. Baby slings and carriers are both increasingly popular among men. Lightweight models can be attached using Velcro® straps and are equipped with four possible ergonomic carrying positions. Sleeping bag models offer sophisticated solutions for optimum temperature regulation and detachable position wedges allow a baby to sleep safely on its back. Size-adjustable sleeping bags are also available. In addition to the numerous maternity and breast-feeding cushions, a new, firm, stable model is also being presented. Development of high-quality mattresses continues to be of importance to consumers and generally include a standing edge and improved discharge of exhaled CO², while simultaneous supplying fresh air.
For more information visit www.kindundjugend.com.