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Desert Designs Heat Up Southern California Market

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The Old West is new again at this fall's upcoming Southern California Furniture & Decorative Accessory Market. Southwestern styles will sizzle as the industry's top trendsetters take aim at the desert's dominant designs. The southwest's finest furnishings will be revealed when Karel Exposition Management (KEM) holds the exhibit set for Nov. 15, 16 and 17 at the Fairplex in Pomona, Calif. KEM, a national exposition company, has been presenting the industry's most popular designs for over 46 years, and plans on making this year's show a wild western ride. Domestic and foreign manufacturers and wholesalers will display their latest designs and creations for hundreds of stores at the regional market. The show will feature hand-crafted bedroom sets, unique antiques, figurine collections, rare artwork and much more as exhibitors display their current and future best-sellers. This year, Southern California exhibitors expect variations on traditional western favorites to fly to the forefront. "Western never goes out of style," explains Tom Lowe, sales coordinator at Museum Collections. "The motifs, the dramatic colors -- these designs are unique to everywhere." Lowe sees his company's reddish, "old stone" hues as this year's most popular. Of his more prevalent pieces, Lowe finds that decadence and the desert combine for the most interesting of products. "Bizarre tables are in right now," he says. "We have one depicting a cowboy lying on his back that's selling well. An end-table made of a boot and a saddle also turns some heads. " So, who's buying these western wonders? "People with big houses, " Lowe says. He views his customers as connoisseurs just a tad off the beaten path. "Western furniture is not made to be unobtrusive. People obsessed with cleanliness aren't usually customers -- not your typical 'glass table' types, " To Lowe, customers who truly appreciate western furniture want quality as well as conversation. "They're people who are honestly looking for something made to look like rocks. " Due to increased competition in the industry, Lowe feels KEM shows are essential to gaining exposure -- at a lower cost. "Because these shows are so close, there's basically no expense. Karel has an important niche in this industry. " From suppliers to retailers, the market will certainly offer a wide variety for all who attend. With hundreds of displays, including floral displays from Season Flower International and oak designs from Alpine Furniture, the exposition is expected to attract trendsetters from throughout the region. The Southern California Furniture and Decorative Accessory Market is set for Sunday, Nov. 15, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.; Monday, Nov. 16, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.; and Tuesday, Nov. 17, 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the Fairplex in Pomona, Calif. The Southern California Market is not open to the public, and no one under 13 will be admitted. There is no registration fee, but attendees must have the proper identification. Karel Exposition Management is the nation's largest producer of regional furniture and decorative accessory markets. Based in its new office in Aventura, Fla., the company holds regional markets at Edison, N.J.; Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; Hartford, Conn.; Orlando, Fla.; Las Vegas, Nev.; Fitchburg, Mass.; Atlanta, Ga.; and Pomona, Calif. For more information, contact KEM at (305) 792-9990, or by fax at (305) 792-9898 or visit the website at www.kemexpo.com.

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