ALEXANDRIA, VA -- A designer's vision for using stone and tile in a project is only as good as the installer's workmanship. That industry axiom will be well illustrated during Coverings 2011, which will be held from March 14 to 17 at The Sands Expo and Convention Center in Las Vegas, NV, with the presentation of the Installation Design Showcase. A combined live-action demonstration and exhibit, the Showcase will feature conceptual bath vignettes by three leading designers, and their creations will take shape in full view of Coverings attendees as some of the most experienced tile contractors working today apply their skills to the installation. The National Tile Contractors Association, a Coverings co-sponsor, helped to spearhead this initiative, which is in its second year, and several of its members who are Five Star Recognition status are participating. The build begins a few days ahead of the official opening of the show, and will be completed by end of day Tuesday, March 15. The exhibit will remain through the show's close.
"In our view, the Installation Design Showcase is the crown jewel of this year's Coverings, and effectively tells the tile and stone story," said Jennifer Hoff, President of Events for National Trade Productions, which manages and produces Coverings. "Yes, the three rooms that evolve over the course of the show are loaded with ideas and inspiration. But, witnessing the progressive process of what it takes to make a design come to life has the power to instill a greater respect and appreciation for the professional tile installer. That's an objective we're happy to help achieve."
The program also is an added showcase for some of the newest and most notable tile and stone products, grouts and other essential installation materials from Coverings 2011 exhibitors, including Ceramic Tiles of Italy, Crossville, Lamosa and Mapei. Helping out with the necessary tools are European Tile Masters, QEP Company and Rubi Tools, while H.B. Fuller Construction Products and U.S. Gypsum are contributing the basic building needs. As for the bathroom fixtures and fittings, TOTO and Hansgrohe/AXOR have generously provided their products.
Ali Azhar, co-host of HGTV's "Design on a Dime," is among the design talent who is fashioning a Showcase space. He is planning a bath retreat that he describes as "spa meets nightclub -- it will be edgy and modern, possibly even featuring a fireplace." Responsible for the installation is Artcraft Granite, Marble & Tile in Mesa, AZ, which also took on the challenge last year.
Phoenix-based designer Annette Denham, who has her own design practice and is in her first term as president of that city's National Kitchen & Bath Association chapter, also is onboard for the Showcase. She has envisioned a home spa retreat, but one that reflects a fusion of classic and contemporary. A team from Lambert Tile & Stone in Eagle, CO, will step in to handle the installation.
LCY Designs principal Laura Yober, ASID, from Orange County, CA, is designing an "aging in place" bath, imagining a space for "grandma" that's practical and accessible, but drenched in plenty of "wow." The installation will be a collaboration between Welch Tile and Marble of Kent, MI, and Cox Tile of San Antonio, TX. Both contractors re-enlisted for this year's edition in the wake of great exposure and positive feedback from their involvement last year.
According to Hoff, all of the materials and products featured in the Installation Design Showcase will have an after-life benefitting Tile Partners for Humanity.