CHICAGO - The National Kitchen & Bath Association expo features 550 exhibitors showing wares for kitchen and bath designers, fabricators, custom cabinetry pros, remodelers and architects.
The show returns to Chicago's McCormick Place following a sojourn in Las Vegas last year. The cabinet manufacturing giants like Masco, Armstrong or American Woodmark aren't exhibiting, giving more focus on cabinetry manufacturers like Wellborne as well as smaller and specialty cabinetry makers.
Cabinetry and wood component makers are also appearing cooperatively in solid surface, hardware and bathroom fixture exhibits, providing the underpinnings - and sharing the spotlight - in exhibits of pulls, slides, hinges, sinks and countertops.
KBIS 2012 Newsline
Multi-generational interiors were emphasized in many of the exhibits, with hardware, home storage and cabinetry solutions centered on the needs of parents sharing quarters with their adult children as well as their own parents.
The major design trends highlighted by the NKBA in its annual survey are evident everywhere, among them:
• Declining use of cherry wood and maple, and rising popularity of oak (now specified in 22 percent of cabinets) and walnut (rising from 3 to 9 percent of cabinet orders).
• Darker natural finishes, now specified in 58 percent of projects, up from just 43 percent two years ago.
• Shades of gray have caught on in cabinets (up from 9 percent to 17 percent last year), occasionally opening to reveal a colorful cabinet interior. (Blum has a dark grey kitchen cabinet settings for its hardware, with one featuring a splash of orange on the inside.)
• LED lighting (embedded in hardware like clothes poles, and appearing in kitchen drawers)
• Glass backslashes, old-fashioned medicine cabinets,and polished chrome are also gaining ground. Read more on NKBA's 2012 cabinety style forecast here.>>
The Cabinet Makers Association members are prowling the aisles in the cavernous McCormick Place South, seeking business opportunities for CMA members and meeting with NKBA officials and KBIS show management to explore the possibilities of working together.
Have something to say? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.