Material Bank debuted its first physical location, Material Bank Lab, at NeoCon today. The first-floor location at theMART in Chicago (#113) will remain a permanent storefront, giving specifiers a place to explore, discover, and collaborate.
“We opened Material Bank Lab with the intention of creating a completely new way for designers to discover and interact with brands and the products they create,” says Adam Sandow, CEO and founder of SANDOW, who developed Material Bank’s proprietary platform to answer the architecture and design community’s need to streamline and speed up the material searching and sampling process. And Sandow would know as the owner of leading design brands, including Interior Design, Luxe Interiors + Design, Material ConneXion, and ThinkLab.
The Material Bank Lab will also give design professionals access to the platform’s new cutting-edge Material Desk™ technology and Smart Swatch™ system, as well as to Material Bank’s material experts. “Our Smart Swatches are a revolutionary system that dramatically improves the efficiency of sampling by seamlessly bridging the physical to digital,” says Sandow, adding that the interactive Material Desk™ will also help designers create digital palettes and sample with a click of a button.
Material Bank’s powerful platform, which is becoming the go-to resource for designers when it comes to samples, allows specifiers to search textiles, wall coverings, flooring, paint, solid surfacing, and other materials from more than 160 leading manufacturers—in one place. What previously took two-plus hours trolling 12 websites and entailed five packages delivered over many days is now reduced to three minutes of browsing on one centralized site. And an order sent in by Midnight (EST) is delivered in a recyclable box by 10:30 am the next day.
Interested in exploring materials in a revolutionary way? Visit Material Bank Lab on the first floor (#113) of theMART in Chicago.
It’s not every day that a genuinely disruptive new product enters the marketplace. But an innovative new collection of textiles from Duvaltexpromises to not only transform the future of sustainable textile specification, but also substantially reduce the impact of polyester textiles on the biosphere with a whole new model for end-of-life recycling or disposal. To be introduced at NeoCon in June, the company’s new Clean Impact Textiles were created with a simple mission: To be the first biodegradable recycled polyester textiles for commercial interiors.
A key to the game-changing new line of textiles is a biocatalyst additive, which is blended with polyester chips during the extrusion process in the manufacture of the yarn. The biocatalyst facilitates the biodegradation of the textiles by interacting with the moisture and microbes inherent in landfill and anaerobic wastewater treatment conditions and thereby activating a metabolizing process that increases the degradation rate of the new polyester to 91 percent versus 6 percent for standard polyester. This means that the new Clean Impact Textiles will safely biodegrade at the essentially same rate as natural fibers—roughly over three and a half years versus 100 years or more for virgin polyester.
The achievement is significant because, despite the design industry’s best intentions to recycle, 99 percent of polyester textiles eventually wind up in the landfill, according to a report called the Advancing Sustainable Materials Management Fact Sheet from the EPA. “Based on the alarming statistics regarding the amount of textile waste that ends up in landfills, this collection of fabrics represents eco-efficiency by design at its best and a crucial step forward in reducing the negative impact of a linear economy,” said Alain Duval, CEO of Duvaltex, who added that since the innovative new commercial textiles can either be safely disposed a landfill or recycled for further use, they offer both biological and technical solutions at the end of their useful life. Duval also hopes the new Clean Impact Textiles collection will inspire others to follow Duvaltex’s lead in offering not just eco-friendly biodegradable textiles, but sustainable solutions like the bi-circular economy model inherent in the new fabrics.
More good news: The Clean Impact Textiles were manufactured to conform to the strict performance requirements of the commercial interiors market, and all meet or exceed the ACT performance standards for heavy-duty upholstery without compromising on color, pattern or hand in order to achieve their biodegradable benefit. The fabrics in this collection have also been assessed and certified for the NSF/ANSI 336 standard for commercial interiors textiles and carry the Facts Gold certification mark owned by ACT. And the biocatalyst technology used in the development of the biodegradable recycled polyester yarn used for the collection was tested under ASTM D5511 and has also achieved ECO PASSPORT certification by OEKO-TEX.
A leader in sustainable initiatives for more than 20 years, Duvaltex’s innovative Clean Impact Textiles collection includes five lines—Balance, Catalyst, Environs, Renew and Terra—that offer small-, medium- and large-scale “softened” geometric patterns and solids in multiple colorways and coordinating neutrals. The collection will be commercially available through office furniture OEM’s and textile marketers this fall. Though slightly higher in price than standard polyester fabrics in similar constructions, the company’s goal is to ultimately achieve price neutrality for the new textiles and a new line will be introduced in early 2020.
Clean Impact Textiles launches at NeoCon 2019 (June 10-12), booth 9041, 7th floor.
Designtex Interweaves the Past and Present With Inspiration From Gunta Stölzl and Anni Albers
With more than 500 exhibitors from around the globe, NeoCon 2019(June 10-12) at Chicago’s theMART will present the newest and most innovative products and concepts in the commercial interior design industry, along with educational seminars and exciting events. Here are our picks for 10 things not to miss this year.
1. HiP Awards: Interior Design’s 6th annual HiP Awards ceremony, honoring industry people and innovative products, will take place Sunday, June 9 at 4:30pm at Marshall’s Landing in theMART—with a party to follow. Purchase tickets here.
2. The NeoCon Plaza: This outdoor space inspired by the idea of “The Urban Boardwalk” will debut this year at NeoCon as a new amenity for exhibitors and attendees. Spanning the length of the MART’s South Drive, NeoCon Plaza it’s designed as a collaborative gathering spot offering views of the Chicago River, Riverwalk and the city’s skyline. It will also be the site of product introductions and programming throughout NeoCon.
3. Material Bank Pop-up: Experience the design library of the future within this debut pop-up Material Bank showcase on the 1st floor of theMART. Suite 103.
4. Daily Keynotes: Gain insight into the ever-changing world of design at three keynotes in the NeoCon Theater: “The Familiar and Unusual: An Investigation of Balance and Experience in Design” by Robin Standefer and Stephen Alesch, founders of New York-based Roman and Williams Buildings and Interiors (June 10 at 8:00am); “Stuff Matters: The Material World We Make” by Ilse Crawford, creative director and founder of London-based Studioilse (June 11 at 8:00am); and “Do No Harm: The Role of Design in Complicated Times” by Liz Ogbu, founder and principal of New York-based Studio O (June 12 at 11:00am).
5. Living Products Showcase: Tickets ($10, register here) are still available for this Tour of NeoCon’s Healthy and Sustainable Products designed to meet the Living Product Challenge. It will be led by a guide from the International Living Future Institute from 2:30pm-4:00pm on June 11.
6. ID Live: Join Interior Design Editor in Chief Cindy Allen as she chats with designers during two sessions of ID Live on the Grand Staricase at theMART. At 1:00pm on June 10, Cindy will be joined by Heather Bush from Carnegie, Erwan Bouroullec from Skyline Design, and Patricia Urquiola from Haworth; at 1:30 her guests will be Don Chadwick from Humanscale, Ed Barber ad Jay Osgerby from Vitra, and Alain Gilles from BuzziSpace; and at 2:00pm, she will chat with Martin Lesjak and Asastaia Su from Mohawk Group, Guilherme Wentz from Sossego, Aliki van der Krujis from Wolf-Gordon, and Sebastian Salvado and Rios Clemente Hale from Janus et Cie. At 1:30pm on June 11, ID Live will feature Mary Holt and Chase Taylor from Carnegie, Nina Etnier and Brad Sherman of Float Studio for Tarkett, David Allan Pesso of JSI, Todd Heiser of Gensler and Byron Morton of theMART; at 2:00pm, Cindy’s guest will be Jessica Ahlerhing and Casey Keasler of Hightower along with several other designers.
8. Interactive Activations: There will be plenty of installations and experiences to enjoy on every floor of theMART—from Herman Miller’s “All Together Now” (Floor 1, South Lobby) to Snowsound Quiet Zones (Floor 7, Pass-Through).
9. A Strong Hospitality Focus: In addition to two keynotes by executives from Roman & Williams and Studioilse—known for stellar hospitality projects around the globe—NeoCon 2019 will feature more than 300 exhibitors showing hospitality-minded products, among them Andreu World, Sossego Design, Arper, Bentley, and Sunbrella Contract.
10. SANDOW Innovation Lab: Stop by the first-ever SANDOW Innovation Lab to experience several compelling, industry-leading events in this multiuse space: lectures, roundtables, and product demonstrations.
NeoCon 2019 is right around the corner. In just under two weeks, the annual trade show opens its doors for another three days of talks by inspiring keynote speakers, previews of the most innovative new products, and endless opportunities to network with colleagues and industry friends. The gargantuan event finds a welcome home in Chicago’s theMART (f.k.a. the Merchandise Mart), the world’s largest commercial building and design center.
This year, SANDOW, Interior Design’s parent company, will unveil an entirely new space for attendees to explore. Dubbed the SANDOW Innovation Lab, this almost 4,000-square-foot area sits on the sixth floor of theMART (Suite 624) and houses unique opportunities for several of the brands in the company’s portfolio to connect with the design community. The SANDOW Innovation Lab will open on June 10.
“This space is raw and colorful,” said Abby Leopold, the SANDOW Innovation Lab’s project manager and lead creator at Curate. “Bringing the Innovation Lab to life expertly married Curate’s mission and SANDOW’s vision.”
The SANDOW Innovation Lab is primed to host several compelling programming events. The yearly Interior Design NeoCon roundtables, hosted by Editor in Chief Cindy Allen, will take place in the Lab’s Innovation room. This year’s roundtable topics will include conversations on current workplace and health and wellness sector trends.
There will also be three ThinkLab-hosted workshops that prepare designer and manufacturer attendees to face many of the dynamic changes happening in today’s contract sector. Over the course of three days, attendees will have an opportunity to learn how to improve the contract furniture buying process, recognize and respond to major sector trends, and how to improve the client experience.
Finally, Material ConneXion invites designers to learn more about the brave new world of emerging architectural materials with Dr. Andrew Dent, the company’s executive vice president of research. This lecture will take place on Monday, June 10 in Material ConneXion’s Lab space. Attendees are welcome to explore on-trend materials and colors using an X-Rite Virtual Light Booth machine.
“This is the first time SANDOW has had the opportunity to activate several of our brands in the same space during NeoCon,” said Kathryn Kerns, executive director of strategic initiatives at SANDOW. “From Material ConneXion’s first-ever pop-up library, to Interior Design’s notable roundtables and ThinkLab’s unique workshops, we’re excited to provide the programming SANDOW brands are known for to theMART’s highly engaged audience.”
To sign up for any of the ThinkLab Workshops or the Material ConneXion lecture, click here.
Thank you to the following sponsors for making the SANDOW Innovation Lab possible:
Follow our hashtag #IDNeoCon on Twitter for live updates.
NeoCon® is the world’s leading platform and most important event of the year for the commercial design industry. With nearly 1 million square feet of exhibition space, NeoCon will feature game-changing products and services from both leading companies and emerging talent–providing unparalleled access to the latest and most innovative solutions in commercial design.
KEYNOTE WITH ILSE CRAWFORD OF STUDIOILSE
Date: June 11, 2019
Time: 8 a.m.
Location: NeoCon Theater, 19th Floor, theMart
Stuff Matters: The Material World We Make
Ilse Crawford is a designer, academic, and creative director with a simple mission: to put human needs and desires at the center of all she does. As founder of Studioilse, together with her multi-disciplinary, London-based team, she brings her philosophy to life. This means creating environments where humans feel comfortable; public spaces that make people feel at home; and homes that are habitable and make sense for the people who live in them. It means designing furniture and products that support and enhance human behavior and actions in everyday life. It means restoring the human balance in brands and businesses that have lost their way.
Date: Throughout NeoCon
ASID is thrilled to showcase the impact of design through an exciting new installation custom designed by Elizabeth von Lehe, Allied ASID, design and brand strategy principal, HDR. The space serves as an oasis that invites visitors to engage, ask broad questions, and explore the beautiful, impactful, and sometimes surprising ways that design impacts lives.
ASID PRESENTS INSIGHTS FROM THE 2019 OUTCOME OF DESIGN AWARDS
Date: Wednesday, June 12
Time: 8 a.m.
Following the first-ever Outcome of Design Awards, created in collaboration with NeoCon, Herman Miller, and METROPOLIS magazine, the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) will explore how design truly impacts lives as seen through occupancy data and analysis.
The Outcome of Design Awards (OODA) honor firms that showcase the power of design through research-driven results and innovative, humancentric concepts. This panel, moderated by ASID, will explore how this design approach can be implemented across projects and will highlight the 2019 OODA winning projects and the data that clearly says it all.
STUDENT PROGRAMING: DESIGN PATHWAYS
Since 2011, Bracher has had a host of releases at NeoCon—across product categories like furniture, flooring, and lighting—and has also designed a number of showrooms at the Mart.
This interview was conducted by Metropolis as part of its NeoCon 50 retrospective series as told to Avinash Rajagopal.
Monday, May 07, 2018
Design is all about the next big thing. We are all obsessed with the idea that there is something new or better out there, and we just have to find it.
This is where interior decorators’ and designers’ true passion resides. If you don’t believe me just go to any of the design conferences listed in the professional interior design trade magazines.
Some people have said that design showrooms and big conferences like High Point Market and NeoCon are not as popular as they once were because now everything can be found on the internet. This was particularly true during the Great Recession, when everyone, including manufacturers, were scaling back their lines and new introductions.
This was a tough time not only for our industry but for the conference show circuit. Attendance was down, and manufacturers were pulling out of permanent showroom spaces in high rent design centers to save money.
And, well, designers were just not going. We all have our personal reasons why, but it seemed like the heyday of design shows, and conferences were at an end. Not true.
I have been practicing professionally for two-and-a-half decades, and I can tell you that no matter how many emails you get from manufacturers telling you about their latest product introductions, nothing beats going to the shows and seeing them in person. Even though attendance was down, and introductions were limited, there were still some designers who needed that yearly fix of attending a design show, and because of them, this phenomena that happens every year is still with us.
The market experience is shopping on steroids. And like every shop-aholic knows, you need to be prepared for 3-5 days of insanity.
This includes everything from loud noise to too many parties and not enough sleep. Comfortable, but stylish shoes are a must, and so is a good bag to keep all the goodies that you get while you are “shopping.”
For newbies, going with a seasoned veteran is the best way to enjoy this adventure. It is the type of adventure that comes from learning and experience. Every designer who has been even to only one of these events can tell you that it’s unlike anything else we do in our daily professional lives.
I know that not every designer or decorator gets excited about attending these shows and markets. Reasons range from that you are forced to walk what seems to be endless miles of convention center space without having a break to not being able to find a chair that you can sit in for more than 10 seconds.
To some, they even think that it all looks the same and become overwhelmed by it all. If that is the case, there is another component to these events that even a non-shopper can appreciate. It’s education.
Many of these design shows offer opportunities to get continuing education credits. There are presentations given on every topic related to the design field. Design is about knowledge. If you haven’t given a thought to attending a design show, maybe this is the reason you do.
Learning what good design is never ends. Hearing from your peers and other design professionals can be just as inspiring as seeing a new chair or line of textiles.
Design is in of itself an experience. We tell our clients that by hiring us, you are making an investment in your personal or work space.
With the millions of offerings of furniture, flooring options, textiles, wall coverings, lighting and accessories available, it takes someone who is trained to see the right “stuff” for the right client. What works for one client may not work for another, and this is why going to these shows are so important.
Good design combines the best of what is old with what is new, and takes seeing the possibilities of what can be. Our vision is our gift to our clients. We know what will work and what won’t.
This is also why manufacturers are eager for us to see their new offerings for interiors every year. They spend millions of dollars in research and development to come up with new products for our industry.
They know that if we can see the design potential, it will make them money. They also know that if enough of us don’t see the design potential, it will be gone before it hits the streets. Our collective design brain knows a good thing when we see it!
So, are you ready? If you haven’t made plans for attending at least one design conference this year, you should definitely make plans for next year.
Yes, they can be expensive and yes, they take you away from your office and clients, but the benefits are so worth it! You not only have the inside scoop on what the manufacturers are developing for the future, you have an opportunity to meet new people, including new manufacturers, have some fun with other designers and get inspired for your next project.
Interior design is about how people interact with their space and possessions. Offering your clients something new and fresh is an advantage that you get from attending a design show, whether it is for a home, an office, hotel or hospital.
“Now is the right time to transition the company to its next generation of leadership,” says Walker. “We developed the building blocks necessary to navigate the changes we predicted would impact the core office furniture marketplace, and we remain committed to these priorities as we focus on maintaining our momentum.”