Over the past year we attended several of our industry’s largest trade shows in Atlanta, Germany, Chicago, and Las Vegas. We started off 2020 by attending the Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS) in Las Vegas. KBIS is the largest trade show in North America dedicated to kitchen and bath design. Co-locating with KBIS is the International Builders’ Show (IBS), to create Design & Construction Week. During the 3-day event, more than 95,000 design and construction professionals came together for the largest annual gathering of the residential design and construction industry.
We went into the show we three main goals. First, we wanted to get the chance to network with both potential suppliers and customers as we continue to expand our capabilities and offerings. Second, we were looking forward to connecting face-to-face with our suppliers—specifically potential suppliers of new products. Third, we were excited to check out raw materials and see where the trends are headed. We’ve had some time following the show to digest everything we saw, and here are our takeaways:
The overall theme of the show seemed to be a movement toward modern and upscale design. The first trend we noticed at the show was the floating shelf. It seemed like they were everywhere we looked in many different applications. We saw a variety of different thicknesses ranging anywhere from 2 inches to 3/4 inch, but one consistent element was the use of realistic, high texture surfaces, like wood grain.
The use of darker colors was a popular trend throughout the show as well. In addition to dark colors, we noticed a lot of contrast between dark colors against bright, or lighter colors within a space. We saw this done a variety of ways, but typically spaces would feature a darker surface such as dark wood grain in contrast with a high gloss or even a super matte lighter color such as white or yellow.
Another major trend we noticed was the use of textures. We saw everything from highly realistic wood grain, stone, and metallic to more abstract patterns. There was a tactile aspect of the materials that made you want to reach out and touch it.
The last trend we saw was the smart home. The increase in technology integration is a huge part of current home trends. We aren’t exactly sure what this means for us, but it will be interesting to see how we can apply this trend to what we do.
In addition to checking out all the trends at the show, we found attending KBIS served as valuable time to spend meeting with our vendors, both new and old. We found it very helpful to be able to meet face-to-face and talk with suppliers.
Our parting thoughts were, “Wow, that was a huge trade show!” But, actually, it’s amazing how much we were able to see and accomplish in such a short amount of time given the size of the show. We are really excited to see what’s to come in the residential design and construction industries. Most importantly, everything we are looking to bring to market at LW was all over the show, so it was encouraging for us to see we are on the right track.
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