KBIS the budget and style edition

You won’t have been able to escape the fact that I have been to the epic trade show KBIS in Orlando Florida with Modenus as one of their ‘designhounds’. But I’m not quite done on telling you all about the inside track on the biggest Kitchen and Bathroom Industry Show in the US. You’ll have read already (here and here) about how big everything was, how technology is making our lives easier and about how health is the new wealth. Now I’m going to show you that not everything that looks good costs megabucks and then I’ll share some of the directional leaning that KBIS had to show style-wise.

hellopeagreen, KBIS, blogtour KBIS, Kitchen and bathroom design, Wilson Art, luxury design on a budget, kitchen design, lixilSome products or design elements get a bad rep for no reason other than they are cheaper or they have connotations of being old-hat. Who remembers how we collectively felt about “gold taps” only a few short years ago? How about coloured sanitary ware? So Seventies and a bit naff, right? Well, both of those are back with a vengeance and looking good when styled well. I personally might still skip the avocado suite, but I saw a new version of a green bathroom collection only recently, so I’m not going to completely dismiss it. I just won’t have one, thank you.  Another product that gets dismissed far too readily is laminate. Yes, laminate is your budget-friendly friend and if you haven’t been near the stuff in a while, it’s changed. A lot. At KBIS I spent some time on the Wilsonart stand to find out what they had been up to since I met them back in 2015 on BlogtourNYCIf you’re in the UK, you might not be familiar with Wilsonart as they are a leading manufacturer of engineered and decorative surfaces company based out of Texas. However, they are here in the UK. So here’s my two cents worth, laminate has never been better. Honestly, with the design and finish quality continuously improving it is easy to mistake laminate for genuine natural materials. There are silky smooth and textured finishes, antimicrobial protection, enhanced scratch and scuff resistant, it’s stain resistant and durable to boot. Everything you see in the below pictures is laminate. Yes, all of it, including those floating shelves and the shiplap (or tongue and groove). In fact, the laminate on wall surfaces was my favourite discovery, as I’d never considered it for that before.

hellopeagreen, KBIS, blogtour KBIS, Kitchen and bathroom design, Wilsonart, luxury design on a budget, kitchen design, laminate

hellopeagreen, KBIS, blogtour KBIS, Kitchen and bathroom design, Wilsonart, luxury design on a budget, kitchen design, laminate

hellopeagreen, KBIS, blogtour KBIS, Kitchen and bathroom design, Wilsonart, luxury design on a budget, kitchen design, laminate

hellopeagreen, KBIS, blogtour KBIS, Kitchen and bathroom design, Wilsonart, luxury design on a budget, kitchen design, laminateDanny Seo, Wilsonart spokesperson and host of NBC’s Naturally Danny Seo, (I didn’t know who he was, I had to ask!) walked us through the products on show.  Two things he mentioned, are wholeheartedly worth repeating; Did you know it’s easy to eliminate that tell-tell brown line? Just ask your fabricator to mitre the edge of the join, and hey presto the brown line vanishes. Secondly, did you know that you can fix laminate directly on to tile? No, me neither. Also, it can be applied directly on to a stud wall.  A big deal when you are thinking about a lower budget project.

hellopeagreen, KBIS, blogtour KBIS, Kitchen and bathroom design, Wilsonart, luxury design on a budget, kitchen design, laminate, Naturally Danny Seo

hellopeagreen, KBIS, blogtour KBIS, Kitchen and bathroom design, Wilsonart, luxury design on a budget, kitchen design, laminate, Naturally Danny Seo

AND not to be forgotten laminate in a shower!

hellopeagreen, KBIS, blogtour KBIS, Kitchen and bathroom design, Wilsonart, luxury design on a budget, kitchen design, laminate

Another budget-friendly option, if you shop around, are tiles. Not surprisingly KBIS was fertile ground for tile spotting. Surprisingly though colour was in short supply and the dominate offering was in black and white often in combination. Statement splashbacks were everywhere but shape wise the metro tile was surpassed for geometrics, with an abundance of hexagonal tiles. From rustic to glamourous mosaics there were plenty of hexagonal offerings. Another growing tile trend was the 3D or textured tile perfect for those statement splashbacks. It won’t surprise you that the Ann Sacks stand was incredibly beautiful and polished but it’s not exactly a budget offering. Sicis and Cosentino also showed some interesting new products, especially the new Electric Marble collection from Sicis.

hellopeagreen, KBIS, blogtour KBIS, Kitchen and bathroom design, bathroom trend, luxury bathroom, tiles, hexagonal tileshellopeagreen, KBIS, blogtour KBIS, Kitchen and bathroom design, bathroom trend, luxury bathroom, tiles, 3D tileshellopeagreen, KBIS, blogtour KBIS, Kitchen and bathroom design, bathroom trend, luxury bathroom, tiles, black & white tiles, monochromehellopeagreen, KBIS, blogtour KBIS, Kitchen and bathroom design, bathroom trend, luxury bathroom, tiles, statement backsplash A trend that isn’t wavering is mixed metals. But also metals as a neutral is gaining momentum, it’s rather glamorous and was delivered particularly well at Ann Sacks, Rohl and the beautiful warm metals on show at Thompson Traders. Another metal effect that stopped me in my tracks was the ombré that I discovered on the Kohler stand. They’re calling it ombré vibrant, and in essence, it’s the merging of two metal finishes transitioning from light to dark. It was staggering.

hellopeagreen, Ann Sacks, KBIS, blogtour KBIS, Kitchen and bathroom design, bathroom trend, luxury bathroom, brass, metal finisheshellopeagreen, KBIS, blogtour KBIS, Kitchen and bathroom design, bathroom trend, luxury bathroom, brass, ombre metal finisheshellopeagreen, KBIS, blogtour KBIS, Kitchen and bathroom design, bathroom trend, luxury bathroom, brass, metal finisheshellopeagreen, KBIS, blogtour KBIS, Kitchen and bathroom design, bathroom trend, luxury bathroom, brass, metal finishes

I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing the details of my trip to KBIS if you missed my previous posts you can find them here and here.

Photography: all photographs by Mary Middleton for hellopeagreen apart from Wilsonart shower enclosure image which was provided by Wilsonart.

This is not a sponsored post, thank you to Modenus and KBIS for inviting me on this free press trip.  While I did not get paid for my time at KBIS, my hotel, airfare and some meals were covered.  All words, opinions and images my own

Follow:

7 Comments

  1. March 26, 2018 / 2:13 pm

    Wow! What an inspirational trip. We normally gravitate to natural materials but you have presented a strong case for laminates and we’ll certainly be looking at them more. 🙂

  2. March 26, 2018 / 2:19 pm

    Great post, i feel like I was at the show! Very interesting thank you! I love the trend offering so many brassware finish options.

  3. March 26, 2018 / 2:28 pm

    I’m with laminate. We kept on getting water damage in our shower through the tile grout. So last time we had it remodeled the builder suggested having laminate instead of tile. I think it looks great, is easier to clean and less likely to have water seepage. We also need to replace our flooring downstairs, I will take a close look at laminate.

  4. March 26, 2018 / 7:06 pm

    Wow, who knew laminate was so versatile. I had no idea you could apply it on to tile or that you could use it in a shower. Some of the images shown totally had me fooled. I’d never have guessed it was laminate. What an inspiring post.

  5. March 27, 2018 / 9:29 pm

    I never knew the brown line trick with laminate – it makes it very hard to tell the difference in photos for sure!

  6. March 27, 2018 / 10:07 pm

    Wow laminate 😱 this is genius idea ! And it looks so good

  7. March 28, 2018 / 1:07 pm

    I think I’ve been guilty of dismissing laminate in the past, but it’s often the most affordable option and the most practical. And it’s come on leaps and bounds in recent years. So versatile too, as you’ve proved here!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *