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Earlier this month, the AD team traveled to Florida to report from the ground at KBIS 2022 and its companion show, IBS. Not in the loop yet? Get your bearings in our preview article, and see what you missed on days one and two.
Last week in Orlando, the Kitchen and Bath Industry Show, or KBIS, came roaring back after its COVID hiatus, with 375 vendors descending upon downtown to show their latest and greatest wares. And this year, nearly half of those vendors were completely new to the show, with overall participation up 9% from 2020.
Among those stands, a few key themes came across loud and clear as the need-to-know kitchen and bath trends for 2022.
Kitchen and Bath Go Whole-Home
All over the show, we learned from exhibitors how product is moving outside of where you might expect it—i.e. the kitchen and bathroom—and into spaces like the home office, living room, and even bedroom. At their best-of-KBIS “villa,” for instance, Monogram demonstrated how a home bar setup (complete with a dishwasher and wine refrigeration) could stealthily slip into one’s living room. Part of this comes thanks to the rise of under-counter and panel-ready appliances, but we’re also seeing brands adapt the detail and style of products to accommodate a “whole-home” ethos. Over at Cambria, for instance, a quartz surface took the form of an elegant gaming table; at Cosentino, a warm, Mediterranean shade of heat-resistant Dekton was used to create a surround for a fireplace. We’re also seeing some groups, like House of Rohl, expand into luxury hardware to support coordination between casework, furniture, and bath or kitchen fittings.
Appliances Embrace A.I.
While smart fixtures have slowly taken over the home, some of them are now going one step further by integrating A.I. into their programming. GE Profile, for instance, is introducing washers with technology that automatically senses the dirt level of a load and adjusts soap, water, and washing time accordingly. A “stain guide” feature in their Front Load 950 series also helps users figure out exactly how to treat stains in their linens and garments. LG similarly introduced A.I.-powered laundry units with their WashTower. Put a load of clothes in the washer, and it’ll automatically transfer what it learns about its contents over to the dryer for a frictionless cycle.
Wellness From All Angles
As we’ve documented at AD PRO previously, more and more consumers are seeking out spaces for mindfulness and serenity at home—and designers are more than willing to oblige. One means of cultivating inner peace: designing a spa-like experience. If Gwyneth Paltrow’s immersive hamam-like retreat from AD’s March issue wasn’t enough to convince you, look no further than the halls of KBIS. There, everything from faucet and showerhead functionality to the finishes themselves presented opportunities for designers to step things up.
The positive impact of nature on well-being has led some manufacturers, for instance, to think about how the outdoors can come inside. Caesarstone has introduced a new style called Pebbles: a warm, monochromatic range that evokes small stones and dappled sunlight. House of Rohl, too, evokes nature in their Reflet Bath Collection, which uses dual finishes and a rippled texture to suggest the sparkling movement of water.
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