I was a bit nervous to go the Kitchen/Bath Industry Show at McCormick Place last weekend. A few years ago, I came home from the expo obsessed with a space-saving microwave/toaster by LG Electronics. I bought it, and it became a sticking point in a subsequent kitchen remodel (I wanted to save it and the designer had to jump through hoops to accommodate it). In the end, it went. I still miss it.
This year’s show had more to love.
•I guess I have a thing for space savers. This one is a water saver, too: Caravelle’s Caroma toilet with a small sink built on top. I asked a contractor looking at it with me if he’d ever seen such a thing. “Only in prisons,” he said. (A representative for the company said only his and one other company makes them.) But the contractor loved the idea of it for a very small powder room. The water used to wash hands gets re-used to flush the toilet.
•American Range’s French door oven. With one hand both doors open, allowing the user to get up close and personal with her roast, instead of having to lean over an open door. Why didn’t someone think of this before?
•Smeg’s retrofabulous refrigerators in tons of fun colors.
•Element Design’s Eluma illuminated backsplash. It’s backsplash and undercabinet lighting in one; LED lights are hidden inside an aluminum-framed glass or acrylic backsplash.
•i.Formz by Design Studio which is made with Corian and bent, shaped, molded, and punched out any way you can imagine. The booth at K/BIS displayed some lacy cutout panels that were fantastic.
Things that scared me:
•Liquid stainless steel that you spray on an old appliance to make it look like stainless.
•The “Bloomin’ Bidet.” I refused even to get close enough to it to find out more.
•ProSun’s Sunshower, which allows you to tan as you bathe.