The Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS) just wrapped up in Chicago.

For those unfamiliar with KBIS, it’s three days of demos and design, toilets and tile, cabinets, countertops and more. Imagine a giant convention center filled with the latest and greatest kitchen and bath products, all on display with no “Do Not Touch” signs in sight.

As the water drains and the lights come down, I thought I’d recap two major trends emerging from our Kohler booth.

Music
At Kohler, we made quite a splash with our latest VibrAcoustic® technology. VibrAcoustic lets you hook up your phone or mp3 player to your bath and stream music, which is audible both above and below the water. You can actually feel the music resonate through your body as you relax in the tub—it’s an amazing experience.


KBIS attendees feel the music resonate through Kohler’s new Underscore® VibrAcoustic baths.

To help introduce this musical technology, we hosted a huge flash mob in our booth!

If you’re looking to bring music into your home, but not quite ready to replace your bath, consider an amplifier. This small unit allows up to eight devices to stream music via Bluetooth, and it easily hides away in a vanity or cabinet. Connect it to SoundTile® speakers, and you can play music anywhere in your home without the unsightly cables or stereo system.

A simple yet ingenious idea, the new StereoStik™ audio add-on connects to Kohler’s CL series medicine cabinets, offering an input jack to plug in a phone or mp3 player. It even streams radio!


The high-tech Numi™ toilet.

And of course, I can’t forget the Numi toilet. Along with its motion-activated lid, touch screen remote, and heated seat, the Numi offers an input jack for mp3 devices.

The Classics, Revisited
Technology aside, the KBIS floor was buzzing with classic style, reinvented for the modern day. ANN SACKS unveiled a new collection of tile made from petrified wood. The stunning outcome is a truly unique and modern take on a beautifully-aged material.

  
The new petrified wood tile collection from ANN SACKS.

Adding to the antique charm, the Michael S Smith Spyros and Kasos stone vessels play with traditional shapes and materials, even adding handles to invoke authentic Grecian water vessels.


Kallista’s new Spyros stone vessel, designed by Michael S Smith.

Sometimes reinventing vintage is as simple as recreating the farmhouse sink for a modern era. The Vault™ apron-front sink offers the sleek look of stainless steel and features self-trimming design to help make installation a breeze.

Bronze is back in a big way, especially when it comes to finish. The weathered bronze finish from Kallista shines bright while the oil-rubbed bronze finish from Kohler offers a darker texture, with subtle hints of copper coming through. It’s the bronze age for a new era.

 
Kallista’s weatherd bronze finish (left) and Kohler’s oil-rubbed bronze (right).

Finally, a new twist in the shower. Shower columns are classic, and actually quite common in Europe. The HydroRail™ shower column is completely customizable, offering a variety of rainheads and handshowers, allowing you to completely tailor the look. And it’s easy to install—no need to break through any walls.


Kohler’s HydroRail shower column.

There you have it, the latest and greatest from Kohler. Did you attend KBIS this year? What caught your eye?