IHA Housewares Show Preview Spotlights Lifestyle Solutions

The 2016 International Home + Housewares Show Preview held yesterday, January 14, at New York’s Metropolitan Pavilion, was a lively mix of vendors who presented new and prototype housewares developed to satisfy evolving consumer lifestyle preferences.

Today, doing so requires diverse approaches as consumers become more assertive as regards housewares they purchase, insisting on items that address the specific challenges that they confront in personalizing their homes and activities. Still, it wasn’t all about function, style counted in terms of the latest fashion developments and reference to tradition, which Millennials have favored in their purchasing habits.

Some 60 companies participated in the preview, including a mix of well-established brands and first-time Housewares Show exhibitors. Some highlights:

At the event, Keurig sampled any number of beverages that could be concocted by its Kold soft drink machine. Coffee has become a more prominent lifestyle element and Jura offered a range of options for making a better brew at home including the automated Jura Z6. Tea has been mixing into the hot beverage market and combined with coffee in the form of the Victor & Victoria Midec Brands Tac Brew tea and coffee brewer.

More effective blenders were prominent, including the license-associated Hamilton Beach Jamba Quiet Blend and the KitchenAid Pro Line series 3.5-horsepower unit.

Wellness has become a major concern for consumers and Coway Co. sought to satisfy their desire for cleaner home environments with an Airmega air purifier line that monitors the air quality automatically, while Crane emphasized the WiFi connectivity of its SmartAir purifier. The Waterlogic Hybrid 3.0 promised to meet the highest standards of water purification.

In cleaning, Casabella offered an Italian-style, sturdy metal construction retro sponge mop based on its earliest product offerings while Kuhn Rikon had its silicone Stay Clean Scrubber, manufactured with over 5,000 bristles to cleanse without harboring bacteria and generating not-so-pleasant smells.

For consumers who are focused on food, new cookware and knives provided various features to make use more effective. On the cookware side, the Bialetti Sapphire hard-anodized aluminum collection boasted Nanotec-infused non-stick coating. Lekue introduced perforated silicone bakeware for crispier crusts, while Trudeau combined steel and silicone in the Madeleine Mold. In cutlery, Swiss Diamond debuted a Prestige line crafted to make prep chores easier even for advanced home chefs, while Bradshaw International presented the T-fal Comfort Cutlery set with ergonomic handles that help optimize grip and control.

The ability to transport food and drink was just about as important at the preview as was preparation. Infusion-oriented portable bottles emerged from several vendors including Ignite USA. PMI was among those suppliers who emphasized glass-lined water bottles, under the Aladdin brand. Igloo previewed a new range of meal transport including the Daytripper Backpack and the Cocktail Caddy Tote. Similarly, Packit is coming out with a freezable wine bag.

The Housewares Show will be held March 5-8 at Chicago’s McCormick Place.