10 Things Architects Shouldn’t Miss at KBIS 2020

We’ve highlighted the best sessions, events, and new exhibitors to catch in Las Vegas this January.

Ross Brady Ross Brady

Each year, designers and architects from around the world convene at the Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS) to view new products, discuss business-building techniques and glimpse the future of kitchen and bath design. The 2020 conference, running January 21-23 in Las Vegas, promises to be exceptional this year, with over 40,000 industry professionals and 600 brands in attendance.

With registration now open, we’ve highlighted some of the best sessions, events and new exhibitors to check out.

The Dawn of a Decade

This forward-looking session, scheduled for day one of KBIS, promises to set the tone in a big way. Featuring a panel discussion of experts practicing at the confluence of technology, sustainability and wellness, this talk will consider the most impactful developments expected in kitchen and bath design in the 2020’s, and how they may change home design for years to come.

The Design Connection 101 — Behind the Wall

The number of kitchen and bath products available for digital integration into connected homes is growing every year. This session will arm KBIS attendees with insider knowledge of the home technology integration industry and how to navigate it, keep ahead of the curve, and anticipate new kitchen and bath technologies for use in cutting-edge projects. With a focus on relationship-building in this rapidly expanding sector of the design industry, this is one session you won’t want to miss.

KBIS 2020

Design Milk & Modenus (DMM) Talks

The popular design sites Design Milk and Modenus have teamed up to host a series of topical conversations spanning each day of KBIS, covering relevant topics in both design and design business such as technological trends, labor management and marketing. Special sessions include a KBIS orientation for first-time attendees and hands-on workshops, all set in a relaxing lounge environment with the Signature Kitchen Suite wine bar.

Zero Waste Kitchens: Upcycle and Recycle

As creators of sleek, new custom spaces, it’s often difficult for designers to imagine re-using kitchen and bath products. Not only is there a substantial environmental benefit from doing so, the art of re-purposing is also an important skill for designers to add to their repertoire. This session, led by designers with expert experience in the re-use of building products, will introduce important tactics and practices for approaching projects with an eye for both sustainability and style.

PITT Cooking Systems

A new exhibitor for KBIS 2020, PITT Cooking Systems is notable for their gas stoves, which allow individual burners to be placed directly on a countertop in any configuration. Able to be installed on any existing material except wood, PITT’s burners are an innovation in kitchen design, allowing a previously unavailable level of flexibility for incorporating gas stoves into any kitchen.

Image via PITT Cooking Systems

Power in Partnerships — Building Relationships Between Brands and Designers

A great way for up-and-coming designers to boost their exposure is to team up with a product brand, adding variety to their client base while lending some fresh innovation to an associated manufacturer. This session will dive into the details of navigating this process, covering best practices and desired outcomes from both sides of a designer-brand partnership, and will also consider common pitfalls to avoid.

The Evolution of Social — Social Leaders Group

Using social media for business promotion is de rigueur across the design professions by now, but the capabilities, options and potential audiences found on social platforms are always changing. This session will introduce a fresh set of rules for strategies around content development, positioning yourself to be found by target users, and best practices for back-of-house maintenance and account upkeep.

The Waterlands Bathtub Company

Another first-time brand exhibitor for KBIS 2020, the Waterlands Bathtub Company will surely turn some heads with their signature line of zinc bathtubs. Closer to freestanding sculpture than they are bath products, the style and sensibility of Waterlands’ new collection is intended to convey the aesthetic of the American Southwest – appropriate for KBIS 2020’s desert location, though a striking addition to bathrooms anywhere in the world.

KBIS 2020

Innovative Showroom Awards

Taking clients to a product showroom is a staple of the designer experience, as is a designer’s apprehension over how they might respond to sensory overload in these often elaborately appointed spaces. To get a taste of the most successfully engaging, interactive showroom designs across the industry, drop in to the Innovative Showroom Awards. Hosted by the National Kitchen & Bath Association, winners are revealed at this special KBIS event, which is accepting entries until November 29th.

Trueform Concrete

Concrete is often overlooked in kitchen and bath design with the understanding that it’s a structural building product, but Trueform Concrete, a new exhibitor at KBIS 2020, begs to differ. Their custom-made sinks, vanities, tables and countertops — all cast from concrete — brilliantly display the inherent beauty in this ancient material and its potential for interior finishes. From unique patterning to bold, unusual shapes for bowls, drains and other essential elements, Trueform shows that the malleability of concrete is its greatest strength in the hands of a seasoned designer.

Ready to dive in and join one of the biggest design trade shows in the industry? Sign up today:

Sign up for KBIS 2020

All images via KBIS unless otherwise stated