Last week interior designers, kitchen & bath designers and other industry peeps descended on Chicago for the annual Kitchen & Bath Show (KBIS) at McCormick Place. Our purpose is to check out what is new, hunt for worthy products, fertilize relationships and hopefully come home with fresh inspiration. Over the next few weeks I’ll post in greater detail but for now we’ll focus on the Good, Bad and What Were They Thinking. These are products or ideas which are above all relevant, well designed and usable. A Quartz countertop is no longer just little speckles of ground up stone all mushed together to create a uniform looking impermeable countertop material. Cambria presented some fabulous new designs which mimic the movement and visual interest inherent in the formation of sediment as seen in granite or stone slabs. No longer any need to rip up the earth for granite, in my opinion. Stunning, jaw dropping and fondle worthy all came to mind moments upon entering the Samuel Heath booth for exquisite English architectural bathroom faucets and hardware. This was our vote for Best of Show. Toto’s Neorest shower gets my award for About Friggin Time! Serious design flaws run rampant with showers one has to walk into to turn on the water. This is brilliant. Bad = a product I would not dream of specifying. Being judgmental is an occupational hazard but rather than allow this purely to be led by my ego I walked the show with another equally competent designer, Brandon Smith, so these conclusions are not single minded. Um no. Not for any amount of money. Seriously, pictures on a toilet seat? Enough said. Under the threat of bodily torture, taking away my closet or cars – these will never be in my repertoire. Snarky, yes. Arrogant, maybe. Harsh, no just real. While the workmanship and attention to detail was there, I would run screaming from any interior with this surrounding a window. In all fairness, this was not from the KBIS show but from a joint show hijacking our attendance. In three minutes we covered their show racing for the exit with a threat of hives from all the polyester and faux I don’t know what but hideous drapery treatments.
And this was KBIS in a nutshell but keep checking back. I’ll have more reports (less snark) including some of the most fabulous artisan created colorful tile you’ve ever seen.