After FenceTech, we exhibited at 2 other tradeshows.
MetalFAB is the annual convention and tradeshow organized by NOMMA. After several years it came back to the Northeast in Valley Forge, PA. This year the excitement and energy was far better than previous years which is a good sign for the entire industry. The show is headed to Greenville, SC for 2016. The venue will accommodate shop demonstrations so promises to be a larger show.
Followed by Metal Fab, we participated at the Architectural Digest Home Design Show in New York City. This show seems to get better every year, not necessarily as an exhibitor, but as an attendee. The products on display are simply dazzling. The increasing combination of modern technology in kitchens and bathrooms versus the revival of old world techniques in furniture has been fascinating to watch. It just reinforces my belief that there is a market for all kinds of products, but at the same time the design trends are getting to be of shorter duration. Or is there even a trend anymore?
The design professional's job is more exciting due to the wide variety of products available, but at the same time it is getting increasingly difficult to keep up with the products and being able to match those with their client's tastes and choices.
We have seen that in our industry as well. At the NY show, we exhibited only the Grande Forge product line, an exquisite range of railing designs from France. It was very well received but the designers clearly had a specific client in mind for the ornate styling of the baluster designs. Indeed a marketing challenge.
We have now started the spring season and the signs are good. It seems like construction activity has picked up across the board. Let's hope for the best, but in any case, I am looking forward to enjoying the beautiful weather after the brutal winter.