One of the most rewarding aspects of the Housewares Design Awards for me is the opportunity to observe the judges in action.
This has never been a competition that relied on photos and product descriptions, which would be tantamount to a creative writing and Photoshopping contest.
Housewares across all its subcategories invites very personal interaction. How fair, then, would it be to rate product in a design competition without inviting the judges to interact on a very personal level with the entries?
So, as you evaluate the Best in Category and Best of the Best winners of the 2017 Housewares Design Awards you can be sure they and all the nearly 300 entries across 12 categories were subjected to a thorough, hands-on evaluation by judges whose qualifications encompass a cross-section of decades of housewares design, marketing and merchandising experience.
They unpacked. They assembled. They cooked. They prepped. They blended. They brewed. They sliced. They poured. They cleaned. They ironed. They steamed. They org-anized. They weighed. They illuminated.
They tested, and then they often tested again before presenting their cases for the difficult task of selecting five finalists from so many worthy entries in each category, then a winner for each category.
And they did so with a resolute sense of responsibility, an understanding that the winning products would reflect not just on the credibility of this panel of design experts but also on the credibility of an industry that works diligently, often against market headwinds, to advance the value of design innovation and excellence.
Despite credentials that give the judges intimately more context into the development and marketing premise of these products (see their profiles and video commentary on homeworldbusiness.com), they confirmed their choices only after using the products as intended to be used by everyday people without such credentials.
Such everyday people are the judges who ultimately matter the most.
There are many to thank besides the Housewares Design Awards judges.
Thanks to Dorothy Belshaw, Esther Ossei-Anto and the entire team at International Market Centers and the Las Vegas Market for their robust operational and marketing support; and for providing an outstanding judging and awards ceremony venue that exudes the style and performance innovation that defines the Housewares Design Awards.
Thanks to Cathy Steel for enthusiastic, detailed judging coordination that ensured the in-depth, independent evaluation of each entry.
Thanks to non-stick coatings leader Whitford Corporation, a longtime Housewares Design Awards sponsor whose innovative quest to make cooking more productive and fashionable is a hallmark of this awards competition.
Thanks to the HomeWorld Business team for its dedication to presenting and promoting the awards.
Thanks again to every company that entered the 2017 Housewares Design Awards competition. Even if you didn’t take home a trophy, your effort to make life a little better could be most rewarding.