Ok where were we? Ah yes, I believe I promised you something to do with rhino poop and a surprise inside the shower. In Part III, the final installment of my Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS2017) recap, I’m going to deliver just that as I share with you two really cool surface manufacturers that are game changers in the world of design. The first is from the tradition of Ripley’s Believe It or Not!
Time to switch from “turkey talk” to tile! Hope you had a great holiday. If you haven’t found the new Kitchens for Living page on Facebook, please check it out and give me some love (ok I’ll settle for a like). Today I’d like to highlight a local resource that you should definitely know about if you live in South Florida.
The last two days of my exciting visit to New Orleans with the Modenus Blog Tour centered around the Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS). This annual trade show is produced by the National Kitchen & Bath Association which is celebrating 50 years as the industry leader (more on that later). I love to attend the show as it allows me to see the trends emerging in the American market and keeps me up to date with products and technology. This year I had an additional behind-the-scenes perspective as a member of the Tour. We were there for opening day, Friday April 19th and enjoyed a whirlwind tour of products followed by time for solo exploration and networking on Saturday. Every year has a theme and this year I thought it was particularly appropriate. The show as all about the concept of “evolution”. This is really a common theme across the board as it applies to everything from design and products and how we are evolving the way we do business in 2013. Here are some of my discoveries:
Let there be light
Lighting always plays a crucial role in kitchen and bath design but this year it was all about the light within. Why didn’t we think of this before? LED lights inside cabinetry, particularly closets is a great idea!
The look of leather
Leathery textures made a big appearance. Silestone by Cosentino debuted their new Suede line of quartz counter tops. Gator Mills ( a very local Louisiana company) showed leather (and leather look ) vanities and Richelieu is offering recycled, reconstituted leather veneer.
Cabinet doors no longer have to swing out due to new hinging technologies that allow doors to slide. Hafele calls theirs Frontino
Glaminates take the stage
It’s not your grandma’s laminate anymore! Taking a cue from our friends across the pond, American laminate manufacturer Wilsonart has upped their game introducing two new seamless edge details and increased durability and sustainability.
Blingy to sculptural
When it comes to handles you can go for the bling or the sculptural. Cabinet hardware manufacturer Duverre is all about very artful sculptural shapes and while I saw a lot of matte finishes, very shiny made an appearance too.
Look, no hands!
Hands free faucet technology has quickly become the norm across the industry and was shown by not only the original, Brizo but also Rohl, Kohler and Moen and Delta Faucets.
This year’s best in show award went to Toto for their awesome Neorest 550H toilet. Believe me when I tell you it can just about do anything but drive you to work! Stay tuned for an entire post about Toto and the Neorest 550
In a nutshell KBIS2013 was largely about technology and texture. Cabinet manufacturers are touting what’s inside more than ever as they maximize the ease of living in the kitchen. White cabinets, cleaner lines and pops of natural and engineered wood veneers are strong trends.
Next up: Poggenpohl, the cutting edge in kitchen cabinet design, inside and out
One week ago I had the pleasure of attending the first South Florida Chapter NKBA meeting of 2013. I was fired up by motivational speaker Dawnna St. Louis and her presentation about how to give your clients what they really want. I’m looking forward to more great events this year and to working with the enthusiastic board on the communications committee.
Not only was it fun to get together once again with all my old kitchen friends but the beautiful venue was an added treat.
We met at the amazing Walker Zanger showroom in Coconut Creek Florida. Walker Zanger is filled with designer eye candy! As soon as I walked in I felt an irresistible desire to explore every nook and cranny. Then I decided, if I were to do that, why not nab a tour guide? I found just that in Branch Manager, Drew Rust.
He explained that Walker Zanger has been around about 61 years beginning as a maker of marble tops evolving into a chain (15 ) of designer showrooms offering all types of tile and stone slabs from around the world. Their products can be seen at the Bellagio in Las Vegas as among many other notable locations. The showroom featured beautiful examples of glass, marble and all the usual materials we’re used to seeing tiles made out of. So I asked him, “what’s new”?
He promptly introduced me to the AnTeak Collection which is, you guessed it, tile made out of teak! It’s new, gorgeous and can be used in both flooring and wall applications. In addition to this they are working on a surface treatment that will allow it to be used on shower walls!
The offerings at WZ are upscale to be sure but the nice thing is that often a little goes a long way. Consider a border or an accent tile and you could get a lot of bang for the buck. Sometimes less is more. Speaking of budgets, WZ does offer some more affordable options as little as 2.50 per square foot.
Hours are Monday-Friday 8:30-4:30. You are welcome to have a look around but bring your designer if you want to seal the deal. I’m sure Showroom Manager Deanna Dolfi would be happy to show you around!
1) Roll outs Want easier access? Install shelves that roll out. These are great in the lower cabinets as well as in your pantry.