Andie Day Brings Us KBIS

Andie Day

Andie Day

Roaming By Design has a treat for you today. Andie Day, an award-winning interior designer who has been featured on NECN’s television series “Dream House,” has submitted a guest post sharing with us her trend-spotting take on the Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS), which ended yesterday. The founder of Andie Day LLC’s Design for Life™ admits to being electrified and inspired to see how many of the companies present are evolving in a variety of ways: KBIS 2010 exhibitors filled the halls with important product releases that will improve quality of life for homeowners. And speakers—including keynote Sergio Zyman, former CMO, Coca-Cola; Dennis Snow, former Manager, Disney Institute; and David Kohler, President & COO, Kohler Company—shared priceless advice for growing a business and connecting with consumers. I’ve summarized some of the tips & tricks for those who weren’t able to be there!

  1. Consumer fear, which has informed purchases, is dissipating slowly. As the market rebounds, consumers are regaining confidence in the economy and this confidence seeps into their purchases.
  2. Consumer mindset is infused with a sense of practicality. Consumers are concerned with cost, value, and ethics, often using the internet to compare prices and do research on companies that they may purchase items or services from.
  3. Businesses need to define winning on their own terms and decide if they’re in business to survive or win. Status quo won’t cut it in this economy; you must develop the mindset of a  “Winner” and commit to yourself to be the best at whatever it is that you do.
  4. Businesses must reinvent unique selling propositions and practices that leave clients feeling the “wow” factor. Make the customer’s experience memorable in the most cost effective way possible. Upgrade the experience and minimize the cost.
The Robern Vanity in blue

The Robern Vanity in blue

Design Trends I am thrilled to report that the companies included in the trend report embrace sustainable design practices and ADA compliant products that make the home safer while also being stylish and appealing. As Baby Boomers continue to migrate to the city, they gravitate toward products that replicate hotels and spas they love. The new line of Robern vanities and medicine cabinets are really breathtaking. What’s not captured in the photos above is the luminosity in the glass at front and sides. Take a close look and note the built-in lighting in the vanity. Drawers can be outfitted with various storage configurations including a spot for a hair dryer. The medicine cabinets eliminate the “swinging door” hazard and are designed to hold a small TV, refrigeration and offer a power source for small appliances

Aquatic's Ava

Aquatic’s Ava

I’ve heard about Aquatic’s newest tub, The Ava Bath, over the last couple of months and was glad to have a chance to view a functioning model. As compared to a walk-in bath, its sleek and modern design doesn’t look institutional. The tub fills rapidly and drains into a holding tank in 30 seconds allowing the user to exit the tub quickly.

Delta's Transfer Tub

Delta’s Transfer Tub

I’m extremely impressed with Delta Faucet’s hot-off-the-press Transfer Tub. It’s attractive, fits into the footprint of a typical 5’-0” tub and is designed for ease of use for all ages. I’m convinced this will become one of their best sellers. Here’s another beauty (can’t believe that I’m saying this about a toilet) that has a sleek, urban appeal with high functionality. Toto’s Neorest 600 features an automatic open and close lid, three cleansing modes and hands-free automatic flush. It’s Tank-less, which means it’s easier to clean and offers a water saving 1.2 gallon per flush. It’s human nature to resist change, especially when it affects our everyday lives. But change can often be good, or even for the best. Innovative design products can reinvent our lives, to grant those with busy schedules, safety concerns, or medical problems a second lease on life.

The Toto Neorest 600

The Toto Neorest 600

I thank Andie for her fantastic reportage since I didn’t make it to the show this year. I had the pleasure of getting to know her during a trip to New York last fall when Brizo faucets flew a group of bloggers to the city for Jason Wu’s runway show. Now, we’re both members of #Blogger19 on Facebook and I’m happy to be included in such fine company there! To see another trendsetting company’s products (Hansgrohe’s) in Heathrow’s new Terminal 5, visit the International Design Examiner page here.

  • Chuck Wheelock

    Thanks for the report Andie. I did not get to attend this year, with such great updates, I wonder if I need to go ever. Still, to see you and the gang in Las Vegas in 2011 is compelling!

  • Saxon Henry

    I agree wholeheartedly, Chuck. We get the goods but miss out on the excitement!

  • Andie Day

    Thanks for the kinds words. Although challenging to coordinate all of the events (I pulled out my flats more than once!) it was worthwhile. Many of the companies represented really are the best at what they do – and the resulting advances in product lines are a reflection of that. On a personal note, I hope that we’ll get together before April 2011 – it just wasn’t the same without you!

  • Maximilliano

    Any help and advice for myself as now I’m thinking about working on a weblog such as this?

  • Saxon Henry

    Be ready for a full-time job! It’s a great deal of work but it’s very satisfying! Good luck to you!

  • Tracy Talbot

    Thanks for the update and the wonderful writing, Andie! I attended KBIS, too and was really wowed by many of the same products, in particular the Robern vanities which I had previously only seen in pictures. Looking forward to 2011 which will hopefully see vendor attendance up as well!

  • Andie Day

    Thanks for the great comments. The manufacturers that I’ve included, Robern – Kohler, Delta Faucet, Toto & Aquatic are making my job as an interior designer more rewarding – it’s exciting to specify products that are infused with eco-friendly practices and safety features. As Dennis Snow, former manager at Disney Institute conveyed in his seminar, the “wow” factor isn’t just a goal, it’s got to become the standard and that’s what I see happening with the companies listed. Gotta tell you that when I walked into the Robern booth and viewed the numerous displays of medicine cabinets and vanities that’s exactly what I said, “WOW”! Well done!

  • Robert Robbio

    Andie, I am a plumbing contractor in the Boston area and I’ve read an article in PM magazine/ For all walks of life and I thought I would tell you that you have forsight that makes alot of sense. Could you give me any advice to get started in this line for residential work ?SincerelyBob Robbio

  • Andie Day

    Great to hear from you Bob and I applaud your interest in Universal Design and Aging-in-Place. Awareness in this arena is widening and many homeowners are specifying design services and products that can improve their quality of life. To get you started I would highly recommend enrolling in the CAPS (Certified Aging-In-Place Specialist) designation program offered through NAHB. Courses run throughout the year and I think you’ll find the training to be very rewarding. Here is the link for NAHB’s CAP program: And a few websites to get you going: The Center Universal Design – National Aging In Place Council – Administration on Aging –, For anyone interested in reading the article Bob mentioned: me posted with your progress – I would love to hear about it!