Design Recipes: Watch for these construction building trends

By Cathy Hobbs
Tribune News Service

Last month, Las Vegas hosted roughly 100,000 attendees for Design and Construction Week. The event, which included more than 1,400 exhibitors spanning more than 600,000 square feet of event space at the Las Vegas Convention Center, serves as the official kickoff to what’s new in the building and construction industry for many brands. While mostly geared toward builders, designers, architects and other trade professionals, it serves as a window into new innovations relating to the industry. Here are a few of this year’s trends.

A panel for a smart bathroom being introduced by Kohler. (Design Recipes/TNS)

Energy efficiency

Energy efficiency dominated new rollouts for many building suppliers, especially with HVAC, insulation and hot waters systems. Nearly every manufacturer in this category touted a new product that offers a more environmentally friendly approach. This ranged from tankless hot water systems and low-emission furnaces to insulation made from materials such as sugar.

Home automation

While not new for 2020, home automation seems to be a focus for many brands in expanding into more rooms of the home, especially in kitchens and bathrooms. Some smart bathrooms had features in which one can preprogram their morning routine to include lighting preferences and even a shower that automatically turns on to a certain temperature.

A kitchen faucet finished in brass. (Design Recipes/TNS)

Unique materials

Wood, especially reclaimed barnwood or responsibly harvested wood, was a popular material, as was porcelain. Durable and nonporous, porcelain for both indoor and outdoor flooring needs remained with many companies introducing porcelain as a modern kitchen countertop solution.

Cathy Hobbs, based in New York City, is an Emmy Award-winning television host and a nationally known interior design and home staging expert with offices in New York City, Boston and Washington, D.C. Contact her at or visit her website at .