Designers Keep Current with Showroom Upgrades

Kitchen & Bath Design News recently posed the question to dealers and designers in the kitchen and bath industry. “Will your firm be updating/renovating your showroom displays in the coming months? Why or Why not?"

 

We are currently updating three displays in our showroom, as well as renovating my office. We are incorporating fresh, new materials, such as inset doors, and level three and four granite countertops. Granite seems to be in about every kitchen, but people seem to want something that is different, something that will stand out, such as level three, four or five.

All of the displays will feature dramatically different looks. One will have very dark cherry cabinetry with a Rainbow Tobacco granite countertop. Another will feature gray glaze beaded cabinets with inset doors, white Carrara marble and a gray tile floor that looks like weathered wood. The third display will showcase a Delicatus granite top on cherry cabinets with a crystal white-heirloom finish and coffee glaze. To further the rustic look, the floor will feature ceramic tile that looks like wood plank flooring. In my office, I'm using a Cambria countertop and Aria thermoplastic doors.

Today's world is constantly changing. What was a fresh look 10 years ago is sort of old-fashioned today. With all the new colors and materials available, how can you resist not wanting to display these beautiful offerings? They separate me and my company from others.

Steve Egan, owner

Design Line Kitchens

Sea Girt, NJ

 

Every year we try to make updates to our showroom. We're short on space, so it's all prime real estate. We'll update displays that don't seem to get as much attention. We've taken on a couple of new product lines that we haven't had a chance to show off yet, so we'd like to include those, too. And with an increase in crafting, garages, offices, etc., storage seems to be getting more attention.

Sometimes we'll show new products or something very unique, creative and unusual. But sometimes it's too unique. It's fun and important to have a couple of those pieces, but it's more important to show what's relevant to our market. We want to reflect who our designers are and what our clients want from us while having a few "wow" pieces. We want to be interesting, fun and creative, but also relevant.

One thing we want to show in our new kitchen display is a mix of different cabinetry finishes, but outside of islands and perimeters. We want to make it more eclectic, mixing together wood, stains and paint colors … something that is more unexpected.

We also want to show off designs our clients are looking for. Styles have changed. We've seen a shift in the last seven to eight years towards contemporary designs. It's a constant battle to stay current. It changes all the time.

Courtney Burnett, interior design manager

Dave Fox Design*Build Remodelers

Columbus, OH

 

We opened our showroom just over a year ago with seven displays, all featuring different wood species. We're updating one of them and adding another … one more modern, the other more transitional. We get a lot of requests for modern styles and we didn't really have anything that fit.

It's important to stay current, to show the latest trends and keep the showroom fresh with new ideas to keep people coming back.

We'll continue to reevaluate the displays to see when we need to make more updates.

Karrie Stimits

Aspen Kitchens

Colorado Springs, CO

 

We have about 10,000 square feet of showroom space with 12 displays. We change about two of those each year. We just updated our bathroom in the front window and we're also putting in a new kitchen this year.

We change our displays based on what customers are asking for. Many colors they are using now are changing. People are going away from the naturals to more painted cabinetry. They're moving to merlots and chocolates. Naturals will always be there, but people are becoming more elaborate. They are also influenced by what they see in the marketplace, such as HGTV, which tends to be trendy.

We have to diversify and change. We have to be willing to create what customers wants. But any time we make changes we need to be sure we don't get too far from our core business, the meat and potatoes, which for us, is naturals. We'll never get rid of those … cherry, maples, hickory, etc. We have to keep them for customers who want ageless kitchens. It really is all about listening to our customers and to change displays according to what they want.

David Passeau

Kitchen Plus

Bellevue, WA

 

After 23 years in business, we're in the process of moving our showroom to a new location, to what is called "designer row" here in Winter Park. It's a perfect location for us, and the new space fits the design studio atmosphere I was looking for.

It is smaller and more intimate. And even though there is less space, we are utilizing it well. I have a friend with a kitchen/bath space in the Merchandise Mart in Chicago who helped me do some planning to develop a good scheme for the new space. Most of those displays are smaller, too. An important part of my new showroom is that I wanted the main area to be strictly displays. Hardware and door samples are in a separate room.

The new showroom also gave me an opportunity to upgrade several displays. I'm moving four from the old space because they were newer and still current, but I'm updating the others to show all the latest and most updated products. I am excited about the new space, and as I talk to interior designers and remodelers, they're excited, too. It will continue to be a work in progress, but it has been a positive experience.

Rick Caccavello, owner

Central Kitchen & Bath

Winter Park, FL

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