With three separate show halls, more than 13 miles of aisles, 2,100 exhibitors and more than 60,000 industry professionals, the 2015 International Home + Housewares Show, which ran from March 7-10 in Chicago was full of unique products, industry innovations and a diverse set of manufacturers.
A couple members of Hardware Retailing’s team attended the show to get a peak at the latest trends. While products varied from coffee machines to beanbag chairs, a few common themes stood out at the show.
Since most kitchens tend to be neutral in color, housewares is a category where color can be added and this was prominently displayed at the show. Bright and cheery kitchen utensils, potholders, aprons, mixers, and storage containers were on every corner of the floor.
Big appliances such as coffee makers, pots and pans tended to be neutral in color, with the exception of prominent red tones.
Mason jars were everywhere. Due to their growing popularity on Pinterest and in DIY projects, housewares manufacturers picked up on the trend and now create mason jar containers, gadgets and accessories.
Mason jars were displayed as drinking glasses as well as food containers holding pasta or different cookie mixes. Some gadgets that coincide with mason jars converted the jars to drinking mugs, piggy banks and water purifiers.
Attractive Storage Options
Desk organization is making its way into the kitchen with plastic and silicone storage containers filling refrigerator shelves and kitchen cabinets. While these organization pieces look as if they belong in an office cubicle, their purpose is to hold eggs, separate fruit from vegetables and organize cluttered kitchen drawers. The plastic containers are useful since a dry erase marker can write the expiration date of certain food directly on the container.
Multi-purpose food containers are spunky and refreshing, a long cry from the old flimsy plastic containers. Airtight lids accompany containers separated into smaller storage spaces, making it easy to take lunch to work without food mixing or going stale.
Bamboo has been a big trend lately in cutting boards and kitchen utensils due to its eco-friendly nature. However, organic wood pieces, as if pulled straight from a forest, spread across the show floor. Cutting boards with the bark still attached and elegant wood butcher blocks were unique and eye-catching among the rest.
Silicone utensils and kitchen gadgets were scattered throughout multiple vendor booths. The use of silicone in housewares allows bright, almost neon, colors to permeate the home.
This material has become popular due to its flexibility and durability. Silicone utensils are easy to clean and add a non-slip grip to coasters and trivets.
*All photos were taken by Graeme Haase at the 2015 International Home + Housewares Show.