NeoCon Wrap Up 2022
We had a blast in Chicago last week, as we always do. It was a little odd
being back so soon after only 8 months have passed since the last NeoCon but
in some ways, it made it better. With some Covid restrictions lifted since
we were last in the Merchandise Mart, it was great to see the show beginning
its comeback and back to full capacity.
If you’re not familiar with the show, NeoCon has served as the world’s leading platform and the most important event of the year for the commercial design industry since its beginning in 1969. We have been a part of the NeoCon family for nearly 40 years now and have become a bit of a staple on the seventh floor with our 2800 sq. ft. booth. One of our visitors even called us the “Kings of the 7th Floor” this year, who are we to argue with that ;).
One thing we love about having such a large booth is being able to showcase items from all our expansive lines of Fine Architectural Hardware. Something we saw beginning to form way back in 2018 was the way the lines of residential and commercial design were blurring. This trend, coined Resimercial Design, has only evolved more since then and has been taken to new heights with so many of us working from home since the pandemic hit. Because our hardware works so well in both realms, this movement is perfect for us. We were honestly surprised at how many people who stopped by our booth asked for residential products – at a commercial design show. But we do offer the unique ability for our customers to have a kind of “one stop shop” experience and find all the furniture accessories they need in one place, no matter what type of project they’re working on.
One integral element in these design styles is the inclusion of power in innovative, thoughtful ways. Our power units are always a hit at NeoCon and this year was no different. One standout this year was our new PCS125 recessed unit. PCS125 has interchangeable magnetic faceplates that allow the user to change the finish to match their changing aesthetic. At this point, including easily accessible power in your design is expected. So why not do the unexpected?
Another hit this year was our Table Legs section. As we mentioned last year, we’ve been putting a lot of focus into expanding this line and bringing in new, more unique designs to stand aside our old trusties. We debuted a lot of new designs this year and it’s always good to receive some in-person feedback in the early stages. Our new X shaped legs stood prominently on either side of the display and caught a lot of positive attention.
It's always a little funny to us when an old design standout as a customer favorite at a show where it has been shown for years. This year, our Snake Wire Manager was that design. Mostly because of its unique color selection, designers were particularly drawn to it, and it made us realize – sometimes we can get so hyper focused on making things like wires disappear that we forget that there can be value in dressing them up.
This year was a great success for us. We debuted a new color scheme in our booth, and it was a big hit. We may not be 100% back to pre-pandemic conditions when it comes to tradeshows but if this year’s turnout showed us anything, it’s that we’re well on our way. We will be back in our usual spot on the 7th floor in 2023. We can’t wait to see you all there.