In honor of our location next year, Atlanta, we’re running a peach-themed promotion through February 1, 2013 and it’s as easy as 1-2-3. Here’s how it works:
Pick up an official Coverings peach-shaped stress ball at Coverings Central, booth 3728 and then take a photo of yourself with your peach in front of an inspiring tile or stone installation anywhere in the world. Use your imagination and take your peach with you everywhere you go. Whether it’s at the mall or the Taj Mahal, get creative!
Then go to our Facebook page and upload your photo to the Coverings wall. Remember to include your name, organization and the location where the photo was taken in your photo’s caption. If you don’t have a Facebook account, you can e-mail the .jpg of your photo to us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll upload it for you.
All photos must be uploaded by February 1, 2013 and the winners will be selected on February 15, 2013. One grand prize winner will be chosen and will win airfare and a hotel stay at Coverings 2013, April 29 through May 2 in Atlanta.
Other prizes will be awarded for the most inspirational tile or stone installation, the farthest distance from Atlanta and the greatest Coverings spirit.
So grab your peach and start photographing!
The Coverings 2012 conference program is ready to wow you. With nearly 70 conference sessions covering every aspect of the tile and stone industry, plan now to take full advantage of everything the 2012 conference program has to offer.
As in past years, printed handouts for conference sessions will not be available on site. Session handouts are available for download and print out by clicking here. Please click on the name of the handout located directly below the “Handout” button to download.
Some sessions have multiple handouts so please be sure to download or print out all materials. Please check the conference page periodically – session handouts will be added as they become available.
In addition to accessing session handouts, you can use the Coverings website to build your perfect show schedule. Just create a login for yourself on the Coverings website. Once logged in, you can add conference sessions you want to attend to your Session Itinerary, and even add exhibitors you want to visit to your Expo Plan. Don’t miss a single session or company at Coverings 2012!
You can also take the virtual conference experience home with you when you order MP3 audio recordings from Coverings 2012. The prices for a complete conference MP3 download or CD-ROM (includes audio, PowerPoints and handouts (where available)):
Download Subscription: $99 onsite/$150 if ordered after April 20
CD-ROM: $125 onsite/$175 if ordered after April 20
Don’t miss this opportunity to take home the FULL Coverings conference and to guarantee your access to this valuable continuing education for you and your staff. To order, either visit www.dcprovidersonline.com/ntp, pick up an order form at registration or visit the recordings table on the South Concourse outside room S230.
If you missed a session recording from last year’s Coverings in Las Vegas, we have a special offer for you. Just go to www.dcprovidersonline.com/ntp for two free downloads from the 2011 conference.
Be sure to register for the show by following this link and remember that attending the show and conference sessions is always free!
One of the highlights of Coverings every year is the Installation Design Showcase and this year’s showcase promises to be as beautiful and exciting as ever. Three ingenious design ideas incorporating tile and stone will come to life before the eyes of Coverings 2012 attendees over the course of the show.
The Installation Design Showcase is a combined live-action demonstration and exhibit and it underscores how critical skilled installation is to realizing any design project.
The construction gets underway a day prior to Coverings’ opening and the designs will be finished by Wednesday, April 18. However, the exhibit will remain in full view through the show’s closing on April 20.
Three distinguished designers have been matched up with three outstanding installation teams thanks to The National Tile Contractors Association, a Coverings co-sponsor that
helped originate the Showcase three years ago. To participate, installers must have NTCA Five Star Recognition, the association’s highest ranking, and be certified by the Ceramic Tile Education Foundation. The collaborations between these professionals will result in an outdoor living area, a master bathroom and a hotel guestroom where tile and stone have star billing.
The designers participating this year start with Joan DesCombes, a nationally known kitchen designer who has her own practice in Winter Park, Florida. DesCombes is dreaming up an outdoor living area that she describes as ‘a personal pamper patio?a tranquil retreat where one can escape, reflect and relax.’ Cox Tile and Marble, of San Antonio, Texas, is assigning the team that will make Joan’s design a reality.
The second featured designer is Orlando native and president of Gribble Interior Group, Grant Gribble, ASID, IIDA. He is planning the ‘Mod Squad of master baths,’ drawing inspiration from 1960s and 1970s fashion. Helping his retro vision evolve into an energetic yet elegant vignette is Collins Tile and Stone, Arlington, Virginia.
Finally, the acclaimed firm tvsdesign, Atlanta, is sending senior associate Foreman Rogers, ASID, who has envisioned a ‘sophisticated and luxe’ look for his hotel guestroom. It’s a space that aims to highlight tile as ‘much more than just a practical material but as a true art form.’ David Allen Company, headquartered in Raleigh, North Carolina, will be providing the installation expertise to this project.
In addition to shining light on the participating designers and installers, the exhibit will highlight some of the latest tile and stone products and essential installation elements from Coverings 2012 exhibitors, including Crossville, Ceramics of Italy, Florida Tile and Metropolitan Ceramics. Furthermore, QEP, Rubi Tools USA and European Tile Masters, Inc. will provide the necessary tools to construct the exhibit, while H.B. Fuller Construction Products, MAPEI and USG Corporation will supply the basic building needs. TOTO is also supplying products for the master bathroom space.
‘The Installation Design Showcase exemplifies the true mission of Coverings: to bring all segments of the tile and stone industry together and amplify how these materials can transform both our living spaces and our world,’ said Bart Bettiga, executive director at National Tile Contractors Association. ‘The fact that the Showcase will be completed over the course of the show, right on the exhibit floor, offers attendees the opportunity to witness the process firsthand, and to interact directly with the designers and installers. It’s yet another example of the kind of innovative, value-added programming that makes Coverings such an incomparable experience.’ According to Bettiga, many of the materials and products featured in the Installation Design Showcase will have an afterlife benefitting Tile Partners for Humanity.
On Thursday, April 19 at 2:45pm, the Installation Design Showcase Roundtable conference session will take place right on the show floor in the Installation Design Showcase space, booth 943. This is a terrific opportunity to talk to the design and installation teams directly to see how they pulled these three vignettes together in just five days.
Come check out the Installation Design Showcase and everything Coverings 2012 has to offer by registering today for free!
From the left, Natalie Phipps; Margo Locust, Editor-in Chief; Ann Seay, Director of Special Projects; and Lisbeth Calandrino, Associate Publisher/Social Media Strategy from Fabulous Floors Magazine at a ribbon cutting at the Dalton Chamber of Commerce.
This year Fabulous Floors Magazine will be at Coverings 2012. Copies of Fabulous Floors Magazine will be readily available in a publication bin in the South Lobby of the Orange County Convention Center, so be sure to pick up a copy.
I’m the Associate Publisher of the magazine and we’re really excited to be part of the show. We love being part of the industry and this is another way we can participate. Since our launch in 2005, we have looked for ways to support our advertisers and add value to the industry. In fact, this year the Tile Council of North America (TCNA) and Fabulous Floors Magazine released ‘Tile for Your Lifestyle’, a resource guide for consumers, designers, and architects that showcases tile as a design element.
One of my favorite aspects of Coverings is its educational program. This year there are nearly 70 sessions presented by industry leaders who will be sharing their ideas to help improve the success of your business. In addition, Coverings is an approved AIA/CES Approved Provider and a NKBA CEU Provider Partner. The conference has also recently been approved for over 20 hours by IDCEC and over 50 hours by AIA. That’s right – attendees can earn FREE CEUs at Coverings!
Change is Not in the Rear View Mirror is the title for my educational session at Coverings. The past few years have been challenging for all businesses; there aren’t many solid answers. Most would say it’s still tough out there. We know we should do something but it’s not easy to make changes particularly when there’s no guarantee the changes will work. It’s only human to look to the past for solutions that we think will work.
Unfortunately there are many reasons why the past doesn’t always work. The past is the past; a different time, different technologies and different social norms. Using the same solutions is like trying to put that proverbial square peg in a round hole. This doesn’t mean that the past doesn’t have value, but the value is more in the understanding of how one arrives at solutions rather than the solution itself.
If one has the right problem solving skills and the right understanding of the problem, solutions will come easier and will be more relevant. In my session we will look at problem solving skills that will help business navigate the present business climate and come up with viable solutions.
Simon Senek wrote a book called ‘Start with the Why:’ his premise – if you know your ‘why’ then the rest makes sense. Knowing your ‘why’ will inspire your and those around you to take action. Simon is somewhat unconventional in his thinking but explains why some people are always more successful and what you have to do to move forward.
The seminar will be fun and thought-provoking as you discover what you need to stop looking backward to move forward.
Join me on Tuesday, April 17, 2:45 to 3:45 PM at S230GH to discover what you will need to move forward in your business. Register for the show today – and remember it’s all free!
Lisbeth Calandrino helps businesses build long lasting and profitable relationships with their customers through social media and outstanding customer service. She is author of the book, Red Hot Customer Service and associate publisher and social media manager for Fabulous Floors Magazine.
Coverings is heading back to Orlando this year, and the show is shaping up to be bigger and better than ever before. When the doors open at the Orange County Convention Center, April 17 through April 20, attendees can expect to be amazed by the latest in tile and stone showcased by more than 800 exhibitors lining the aisles of the 300,000- square-foot expo floor. What’s more, with 50-plus countries represented, the global dimension of products, trends and technologies on view is unrivaled. From start to finish, Coverings promises to be a worthwhile investment in time and an eye-opener for all who attend.
‘There’s good reason why Coverings is the ultimate tile and stone experience,’ said Karin Fendrich, show director of Coverings. ‘Aside from the innovations and products to be found on the expo floor, the show is an inspiring and empowering forum with a conference program that raises the bar on professional development and offers valuable ideas for business owners in every segment of this industry. The networking opportunity ices this cake and seems to always have countless payoffs.’
So, what will show goers see? Here’s a sneak peek of some of the great goods that Coverings’ exceptional crop of exhibitors will have on display. And, to learn more about additional exhibitor previews, and for insider information on the expo, visit Coverings’ Facebook page. New and Noteworthy in Tile & Stone, Adhesives, Membranes and more…
Apavisa (Booth 2519) is heading to Coverings with Archconcept, a new collection of patterns in stone, metal and cement finishings that are inspired by the latest manufacturing technology and trends in architecture. This revolutionary range of porcelain is well suited for indoor and outdoor applications.
Azulejos Plaza (Booth 2106) will impress attendees with Ecowood, a porcelain stoneware wall tile comprised of 85% recycled content. It comes in four colors and can be used outdoors.
Casalgrande Padana SpA (Booth 4700) is showing Architecture and Bios. The first newcomer is a fully vitrified porcelain stoneware collection that’s a sophisticated, high-performance option for floor and wall covering, indoors and out. The line is available in a range of 12 colors and a finish reminiscent of brushed cement. Bios brings sustainability to the surface with its unique antibacterial properties, achieved by blending the material base with mineral particles. Such tiles have become a requisite for LEED-ID credit eligibility, and have won extensive recognition.
Ceramiche Refin (Booth 4123) has three new products that capitalize on the latest technology. Among them, Cromie is a collection of chromatic ceramic tiles based on the scientific criteria of brightness, saturation and shade.
Crossville (Booth 3200) found inspiration in concrete and refined stone to create Structure, a minimalist design that contains at least 20% consumer certified recycled content. The new offering is apt for commercial and residential installations, and is offered in large format and plank-shaped sizes.
Emilceramica SpA (Booth 4718) is presenting On Square. The new collection exemplifies the elegance and simplicity of balance, bringing together 45 blocks of cement reproduced on the ceramic surface to maintain the richness of the material. The contemporary offering comes in four colors in 80-x-80, 60-x-60 and 30-x-60 cm formats. Additionally, look for inspiring introductions from three of company’s sister brands: Ergon, Provenza and Viva.
Granada Tile (Booth 4465) will be calling attention to three new whimsical works of cement tile art–Normandy, Alhambra and Barcelona. All are part of the Echo Tile Collection that is made of durable and recycled content, and are ideal for bathroom and kitchen applications.
Metropolitan Ceramics (Booth 2800) will roll out Quarrybasics Abrasive, a product providing excellent silicon carbide coverage that prevents slips and enhances the look and longevity of quarry tile.
Oscar & Izzy (Booth 2554) is a newcomer to the international expo and is bringing fun to the show floor with its retro-inspired collections of decorative ceramic tile. All lines boast bold illustrations and bright colors, and are offered in 4-x-4 and 6-x-6 inch and subway sizes.
Settecento (Booth 5012) is showing Lodge, which is a glazed porcelain portraying the essence of rustic, reclaimed wood. This natural beauty is available in four colors, two sizes (9-x-38 and 6-x-38 inches) and two surface finishes.
Taulell (Booth 1723) is premiering a variety of new products, one of which is ónice. Neoclassical in nature, it features the spectacular shine of onyx stone and is available in seven sizes.
Zirconio (Booth 2111) will zoom in on its incorporation of inkjet technology to create Dolomite, a captivating color-body porcelain that seamlessly imitates the look of natural stone.
Be sure to register for the show today by following this link. Remember, it’s all FREE and we’ll see you in Orlando!
Coverings is a committed Twitter user; we find it to be the fastest way to spread show announcements and to draw attention to the posts that appear on this blog.
Over the next few weeks, we have three Twitter promotions scheduled.
The first promotion is to host a Tweet Chat, and it’ll be a first for us. The second is to host a Tweet Up during the show, and those Tweet Ups have become something of a tradition in the last few years. The third Twitter promotion we’re conducting is a contest to see who uses the hashtag #Coverings2012 the most times in his or her Tweets over the course of the show. Whoever uses that tag the most will win a trip to Atlanta for Coverings 2013, so be sure to use that hashtag every time you tweet about Coverings!
For the non-Twitter users out there, let’s talk through some of these Twitter terms.
A Tweet Chat is a public conversation that takes place on Twitter about a previously specified topic. Over the course of an hour, the host asks a series of questions and uses what’s called a hashtag to identify to the other participants in the chat that it’s part of the chat that’s taking place. Participants use the same hashtag in their responses and by following that hashtag, all of the participants engage in a rapid-fire exchange of ideas and opinions. A hashtag by the way, is the pound sign followed by a word or acronym.
In this case, Coverings is hosting the #KBTribeChat next Wednesday, April 11 from 2pm to 3pm EST. #KBTribeChat is a weekly event where kitchen and bath minded designers, architects and anybody else who wants to discuss a different kitchen or bath design related topic. In our case, we’ll be talking about tile and stone. If you’re a Twitterer and would like to connect with a large group of like-minded individuals, join us on the 11th!
Coverings holds a Tweet Up every year and some may wonder what a Tweet Up is. A Tweet Up, simply stated, is a face-to-face meeting of Twitter users at an event. Most people who use Twitter regularly, usually find they connect and build networks with people who share similar interests. Many of these connections turn into friendships, though they’re virtual ones. A Tweet Up is an opportunity to actually meet in person the people you’ve been communicating with online.
This photo was taken during the Tweet Up at Coverings 2011 in Las Vegas.
Coverings has developed some great connections with the tile and stone communities and this year’s Tweet Up promises to be the best one ever.
The Official Coverings Tweet Up will take place in Booth 3728, Coverings Central, on Tuesday, April 17 at 4pm . If you’re a Twitter user, please be sure to be there. If you’re curious about Twitter and would like to meet some folks who use it well and are happy to share their knowledge and enthusiasm, be sure to be there too!
If you haven’t done so already, please register for the show and remember, it’s all free. If you’re a Twitter user and we haven’t connected yet, be sure to follow @Coverings and we’ll follow you back. Use that #Coverings2012 hashtag!
Coverings 2012 is THE premier event for tile + stone contractors. With free education, live demos, networking opportunities and the NEW Contractor Days, you need to be at Coverings, this year more than any year before. Contractor Days are Wednesday, April 18 and Thursday, April 19 and are the must-attend days for contractors. Contractor Days include tours of the show floor with lunch and happy hour as well as access to the Contractor Lounge.
In order to attend the Contractor Tours contractors must first register for Coverings for free, and then sign up for a tour here . The one-hour tours will start at the Contractor Lounge, booth 3735, and will be given on a first-come, first-serve basis. Each company is limited to three employees for the tours and there are eight tour times to choose from.
The Wednesday 10:30 to 11:30 tour is full and the rest are filling up fast! Sign up today to make sure you get to take advantage of this great opportunity.
The Contractor Tours include lunch AND happy hour, so don’t miss out on this invaluable opportunity!
In addition to the Contractor Tours, badged contractors can network and relax during the show in the Contractor Lounge, booth 3735. The Contractor Lounge is only open to badged contractors and Miller Lite beer sponsored by MAPEI will be served 3:30 to 5PM on Wednesday and Thursday. The Contractor Lounge hours are:
Tuesday, April 17 from 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM
Wednesday, April 18 from 10:00 AM – 11:30 AM and 1:00 PM – 5:30PM
Thursday, April 19 from 10:00 AM – 11:30 AM and 1:00 PM – 5:30 PM
Friday, April 20 from 10:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Contractors, once you register for the show, be sure to sign up for a Contractor Tour today. Contractor Lunches and Tours are sponsored by the Tile Council of North America (TCNA) and the National Tile Contractors Association (NTCA).
Fireclay Tile is excited to be attending Coverings 2012 in Orlando, Florida from April 17-20th. Fireclay Tile’s mission is to produce the most beautiful, durable ceramic products using sustainable manufacturing processes and recycled materials. We are innovators and actively engaged in developing new ceramic technologies while preserving ‘old world’ methods. We focus on both the residential and commercial markets, and we would LOVE to meet with you at the show.
To take you back a few years, Fireclay Tile was established in 1986 by Paul Burns, our Chief Ceramicist. His Uncle, Chester, owned Stonelight Tile, one of the early California tile manufacturers. Since its inception, Fireclay Tile has been at the forefront of innovation in the ceramic tile industry. Some of our proudest moments have been switching to all lead free glazes in the 80’s, inventing our Debris Series Recycled Tile in the 90’s, and in the past two years launching Crush, our 100% recycled glass tile line, and our new Glazed Thin Brick line crafted from 30-100% locally reclaimed earth. We are scavengers at heart, and we are constantly looking around our local community for new waste streams to up-cycle into our products. Sustainability is just part of our DNA, and we couple it with amazing customer service focused on supporting our customers’ success. And we make everything that we sell right here in the USA!
At Coverings 2012 we will be showcasing our entire line as well as highlighting a few NEW products and collections including: Crush 100% Recycled Glass Tile: The most eco-friendly and cost effective recycled glass tile produced in the USA. Crush is available in 40 colors in both gloss and matte finishes in 17 different shapes and sizes. Click here for our Crush 100% Recycled Glass Video.
Click here for our Glazed Thin Brick Video.
We are also extremely proud of our enormous Decorative Tile offering, including handpressed and handpainted decorative tiles. We are particularly passionate about our Cuerda Seca tiles, as we are one of the only to do a multicolor wax resist tile made 100% from our own materials in the USA.
email@example.com and find out why over 93% of our customers rate their overall experience as exceptional. We know you will love working with us. Plus, we make a killer margarita!
Our Vice President, Eric Edelson, will also be presenting at Coverings on Tuesday, April 17th and Friday, April 20th about How to Market Your Showroom Online. Both sessions are at noon, and he’s giving two of the 17 free social media sessions Coverings is hosting at booth 3728, Coverings Central. We’d love for you to stop by and pick up your FREE Guide to Marketing Your Showroom Online.
Feel free to reach out to our ceramicists with any questions you have by checking out out the Fireclay Tile website, and we’re also on Facebook and Twitter!
Be sure to register for the show today by following this link. Remember, it’s all FREE and we’ll see you in Orlando!
Celebrating 63 years in the industry, Bedrosians Tile and Stone is proud to exhibit at Coverings for the eleventh consecutive year. Established in Fresno, California, today Bedrosians is headquartered in Anaheim, California with 33 showrooms and slab yards nationwide. Bedrosians has grown into one of the nations largest independent manufacturers, importers and distributors of glazed ceramic and porcelain tile, glass tile, natural stone tiles and slabs. Our dealers are located throughout the United States and Canada.
Fortunately, we have the ability to manufacture large quantities of high quality floor and wall tile for large commercial jobs from our factory in China. We offer direct delivery worldwide. Architects and designers take full advantage of this unique design opportunity. We also offer a vast selection of products from these popular brands: Tilecrest, Ottima Ceramic, Stonepeak, Cerdomus, Marazzi/Ragno and Florim. Our products are installed worldwide in hotels, shopping centers, new home construction, remodels as well as hospitals, office buildings and casinos.
Compressed into four days, Coverings is our equivalent to the fashion industries’ biggest event: New York Fashion Week. Coverings draws attendees and exhibitors from throughout the world and Bedrosians is excited to be a part of this international market. Our next generation at Bedrosians’ has taken on the task of creating a bold, young and fresh look for our new 2,015sq. ft booth. With more than 515 items showcased, we are introducing 16 new and fashionable ceramic, porcelain and stone collections at Coverings.
Our designers and buyers are constantly searching for that unique color or design inspiration to develop into a product to offer our discerning customers. Colorful tile and stone concept boards with new and trendy designs are displayed everywhere at Bedrosians design center in Anaheim. During the month of February for example, we had buyers and designers ’tile and stone shopping’ in Italy, Brazil, China, India, Turkey and Spain.
Availability is one of the keys to our success. Our products are available for immediate delivery from our major distribution centers throughout the U.S. Our highly motivated and professional sales staff is constantly introducing our new products to architects, designers and dealers. We offer a full range of products at every price point with the most competitive pricing in the industry.
Our enthusiasm for exhibiting our new products at Coverings is at an all time high! The extraordinary, new, sleek and stylish Manhattan glass is available in over 148 items, 15 metallic colors and 5 sizes: 2×8 (mesh mounted) and 4×16 (lose field) matt or gloss as well as 1×1, random interlocking and 2 step matt and gloss combinations. Available in 8 glass blends and 12 stone blends. Included in the popular color choices in Manhattan are true jet black, silver, grey, beige and bright white in matte and polished. A big fashion hit with designers! Look for Manhattan glass tile at Coverings!
Another top design look for us is our new Timberline porcelain wood-look series in 5 colors, available in 5 ¼’ x 32′. Polished porcelain is in big demand. We manufacture beautiful stone looking 20’x20′ polished porcelain in over 24 essential colors. Currently our most requested tile and stone colors are silver, grey, beige and bright white. We stock over 154 items that fill that demand.
You are invited to schedule an appointment for Coverings at: Coverings2012@Bedrosians.com or come and meet us at our booth #5158 at Coverings! The red carpet will be rolled out for you and we know you’ll enjoy the show!
Follow us on the web, on Facebook, on Twitter and on Pinterest for the best pricing, design, service and quality. Register today for the show if you haven’t done so already and remember, it’s all free!
At some point, at every trade event I attend – and Coverings 2012 this April 17-20 won’t be any different – I’m going to ask myself: What am I doing here?
It’s a legitimate question, given that nobody’s description of Eden includes a hall teeming with thousands of strangers, a day’s walk on concrete floors and the inevitable daily collapse in a room that looks vaguely familiar to one that’s 2,000 miles away. And most of us at a trade show have, at some point, that same moment.
After a moment, it’s time to shake it off. It’s time to get back in the game which, for me, is about stone. It’s also about Stone Update – I’ll get back to that shortly – but there’s this curious streak about dimensional stone, and the people involved with it – that’s kept with me for a full decade’s worth of Coverings and plenty of other events along the way.
Some of that curiosity involves, at present, the notion that stone’s a dead soldier in today’s economy. More than one person in the trade has reached into the Big Bag of Canards to tell me that, ‘Well, you know, stone’s really only at 10 percent of what it was. It’s not coming back.’
Part of my hunt at this year’s Coverings is to find out just where that ’10 percent’ factoid popped up, because it’s not true. If you look on the show floor, you’ll see plenty of stone vendors who’ll say they’ve seen better days, but times aren’t as dark as others might claim.
Last year’s import numbers bear this out, with a declared value of $2 billion for slabs and stone tile arriving at U.S. ports-of-entry. (Depending on who you talk to, foreign shipments make up 80 percent to 90 percent of the total U.S. dimensional-stone market, making that import data important.) It’s certainly below the apogee of $3.3 billion of import value seen in 2007, but above the bottoming-out of $1.7 billion in 2009.
It’s more than a webpage and The EDGE, a twice-monthly e-newsletter (with free subscriptions here, however. Stone Update also offers set of daily e-newspapers (like this one) tapping into the Twitter timelines of vendors, distributors, fabricators and others for a direct look at what people are saying in the trade.
Of course, there’s the ubiquitous Facebook page, along with the Honed & Dry blog that includes ‘The WEEK,’ a Monday-morning summary of the previous seven days in the stone industry. Of course, there’s Twitter, and @StoneUpdate will include from-the-floor reporting on Coverings from me during the show next month. You’ll be able to follow along from wherever you are (including the show floor) to find out what’s new or newsworthy or unusual. Register for the show if you haven’t done so already.
Above all, I’ll remain curious. It’s the what in being there.
Emerson Schwartzkopf is editor/publisher of Stone Update, an online news service for the stone and hard-surfaces industry. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
New products, innovative programs, focused messaging, sustainable practices… As we at Crossville prepare not only for Coverings 2012 but for the balance of this exciting year, these are the key things capturing our attention and energies.
At the center of all our endeavors, we’re more in touch than ever before with our American roots as a company. For 26 years–since the day we opened our doors, Crossville has produced beautiful tile on U.S. soil. We’ve made the most of domestic resources. We’ve hired talented leadership to move our brand in the right direction. We’ve converged globally-influenced style with distinctly American design sensibilities.
Today, our products, programs, messaging and sustainable practices are rooted in our American-made foundation as we progress into exciting, new seasons. We research, develop and design from within yet also tap into global wellsprings of industry innovation. Our goal is to always be at the forefront, offering our customers the latest looks created from the most modern technology–and always manufactured responsibly.
Our booth–#3200–at Coverings will be full of products and activities that make us uniquely Crossville. Likewise, we’ll bring the Crossville touch to other areas of the show, as well.
Introducing Shades by Crossville(TM): Sophisticated and urban, this new porcelain tile line will make its debut at Coverings. The collection features 9 colors, including 6 shades of gray, a cool white, a warm white and a not-quite-black selection. Field tiles are accented by 1×3 honed mosaics, as well as metallic mosaics.
Mobile & Social Marketing: We’ll also be hosting a quick course for retailers and distributors in the use of our Crossville Q2R mobile app. This app makes even in-store sales a digital/social/mobile experience, plus it provides consumer-specific tracking on the showroom floor. The app, along with our social media communications program, is part of Crossville’s efforts to reach audiences directly, wherever they go to get information.
Installation Presentation: Crossville Technical Services Director Tim Bolby will lead the ‘Uniquely Crossville: Ideas for Installation & Innovation’ presentation at the live demonstration area at Booth 2633 on Tuesday at 10 a.m. Topics will include cladding and advancements in tile recycling, with a special look at the ways Crossville is moving the industry toward more sustainable solutions. Click here to view the schedule of the 2012 Live Installation Demonstration Stage, sponsored by TCNA and NTCA.
Make a note to spend time with us at Coverings. We’re excited to see you in April! Be sure to register and remember, it’s all free!
Coverings, the international tile + stone expo and conference, has effectively set itself apart from the trade show pack with ‘Bring Your Client to Coverings’ — the one opportunity consumers can sneak a peek at what their architects and interior designers are privy to in this decorative building materials category. Coverings 2012 convenes April 17 through April 20 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, and registered A+D attendees can be joined by up to two client guests daily as they peruse the introductions of hundreds of global exhibitors representing more than 50 countries. Attendance for all is free.
‘The ‘Bring Your Client to Coverings’ program is always a huge hit with A+D show goers,’ said Karin Fendrich, show director of Coverings, ‘because it keeps their clients involved in the design process and exposes them to the wealth of options and resources available in the marketplace. On the flip side, for consumers in the company of their designers, it’s an eye-opener that helps them appreciate the challenge of editing through the vast crop of choices and hone in on what’s best suited for their projects. This program is yet another example of Coverings’ singular dedication to cultivating an enriching environment for everyone who’s interested in tile and stone.’
Register for the show today and remember, it’s all free!
We can count on there being some beautiful new products at Coverings this year. But more goes into actually using these products in real projects than beauty alone. There are many factors of course, but at Igloo Studios we pay special attention to a particular, timeless need: Great customer service. We are especially interested in how we can leverage technology to help tile & stone companies provide remarkable, differentiated customer service to the showrooms, designers and homeowners who specify and purchase their product. Because, let’s face it, we all like to do business with companies and brands that invest time and care into us.
In the San Francisco Bay Area where we’re located, there are a lot of tech companies that have popularized the idea of serving ‘users’ instead of only paying customers. In other words, they’ve realized that they can extend their brand even further by allowing folks to try-out or ‘use’ a product before buying it. That’s a fine strategy for a Tech company, but how can a tile or stone company have ‘users’?
I mentioned in my previous Coverings blog post that Google SketchUp allows designers the ability to actually show their clients what tile or stone will look like in their space. In essence, SketchUp gives users the ability to try-out products and materials before buying them.
Even better, the companies that provide SketchUp users with compatible product catalogs are giving great customer service. By giving designers and homeowners their products in SketchUp, they save potential customers time and money and give them a powerful tool to sell their products. A symbiotic relationship if I’ve ever seen one!
If you’re interested in how companies from the Tile Council of North America, Ceramics of Italy and Tile of Spain are using Google SketchUp to support their ‘users’, then join me at Coverings 2012 on April 19th at 10:30AM for my session Selling Your Project to Customers Using Google SketchUp. Designers and tile sales people will learn how to present tile and stone in stunning design presentations, and manufacturers will witness the power of supporting SketchUp users with their product catalogs.
Please register for the show today and remember it’s all FREE!
“We can do nothing to change the past, but we have enormous power to shape the future” -Edward Cornish
I have people tell me all the time, ‘I don’t follow trends’. But what they mean is they don’t follow fads. There is a difference between a fad and a trend. Fads come and go but trends have a longer life and are evolved from specific drivers and influences in our society, which I will discuss in my presentation during Coverings. Trends are important. They tell us what materials we will be using and what we will be seeing in the future.
One trend I will be focusing on as a speaker at Coverings 2012, will be Garden Party. My studio has forecasted Garden Party for 2013 and describes it in the following way:
Be charmed by an imaginative vision of slate shades mixed with greenery and blooms. Playful, fanciful and enchanted, this is not your standard garden party. Corsage florals are bold and over scaled, Garden greens and feminine floral hues are paired with black or dark blueberry for edge and balance, Floral Patterns mix with trellis, swirls and leaves.
My studio has partnered with Artaic and taken this whimsical and lighthearted trend and we created our mosaic tile collection together called ‘Enchanted Garden’. Flower motifs are everywhere from tiles to fashion and with spring just around the corner this is a very exciting and inspiring design collection. It has been a fascinating process working with Artaic and experiencing our designs come to life with their innovative robotic technology.
Garden Party is just one of many trends I have forecasted for 2012-2013 and I can’t wait to share the rest of them with you during my conference sessions at Coverings, ‘Tile Trends: Future Forecast.’ Register today for free to join me – see you all in Orlando!
Year after year, Italian tile manufacturers introduce new products that lead the way in terms of technology, sustainability and design concepts. This season’s most popular trends from Italy include monolithic porcelain slabs, mixed materials, and concrete-, resin- and terracotta-inspired tiles, which can be seen throughout the Italian Pavilion at Coverings 2012, this April 17th through the 20th in Orlando, Florida.
Monolithic Tiles & Easy Laying Floors
One of the most important trends, from a technical standpoint, is the advent of monolithic tiles and easy laying floors. Not only are the tiles perfectly squared and rectified, but also frost-resistant, skid-resistant, easy to clean, and more hard wearing than any natural material. They can also be dry laid over dirt, pebbles, grass, sand or gravel or installed on top of an existing floor without the need for specialized workers. ‘EVO 2/E’ by Mirage and ‘AExtra 20′ by Caesar feature ¾’ thick modular porcelain tiles that can be laid onto support structures or directly onto gravel, making it a simple solution for a variety of spaces. Another example is Century’s ‘Challenge’ series whose availability in a range of sizes – as small as 12’x12′ and as large as 4’x4′ – makes it the perfect flooring solution for large-scale surfaces. Also of note is Florim’s ‘Easy Flooring’ tiles featuring a 2mm thick rubber and cork support, which increases the grip of the slabs on the substrate. The thickness also makes it possible to absorb slight defects on the underlying surface.
Thanks to improving digital technologies, companies are mixing and matching the look of natural elements from alabaster and marble to metal and wood and everything in between. Viva’s ‘Gotha’ series incorporates visual elements from glass, bricks, plaster and cement. Provenza offers a range of marble and concrete looks for its ‘Re-Use’ collection while Naxos matches wood with Lecca stone for its ‘Project’ collection. Also of note is Sant’Agostino who received much attention at Cersaie with its alabaster and marble inspired ‘Luxor’ line.
Concrete & Resin
From the subtle texture and soft feel of resin to the rough, industrial touches of cement, these two materials are undoubtedly gaining popularity in architecture and design. Italian companies are responding with tiles that feature both looks, independently and congruently, with the functionality and durability of ceramics. ‘Concept’ by Sant’Agostino, ‘RE-evolution’ by Lea and ‘Experience’ by Panaria all feature the spatula designs characteristic of resin pavements. Meanwhile, ‘Concreta’ by Settecento, ‘Evolve’ by Atlas Concorde, ‘Architecture’ by Casalgrande Padana and ‘Nr. 21’ by Viva are all inspired by concrete and brushed cement.
be sure to register for the show and we’ll see you next month!
This year marks Tile of Spain’s 25th year at the Coverings trade show, and once again, Tile of Spain, the international brand representing 200 ceramic tile manufacturers belonging to the Spanish Ceramic Tile Manufacturer’s Association (ASCER), will bring one of the largest foreign delegations to the show.
A visit to the Spanish Pavilion (#1903) will give guests a front row seat to experience the cutting-edge technology, sustainable design and diverse architectural solutions from leading Spain tile manufacturers. Similar to last year’s show, the 2012 Spanish delegation will consist of 42 ceramic and stone manufacturers.
Visitors to Coverings will soon understand why Tile of Spain boasts the bold message, ‘Yes, We Choose Spanish Ceramic.’ Tile of Spain is the ceramic of choice because of the unlimited creativity, capacity to innovate, constant technological initiative and eco-friendly design choices, including ceramic tiles that save energy and help clean the air. With all these benefits, it is no wonder renowned architects and designers are choosing Tile of Spain more and more in both their urban and domestic designs and projects.
register to attend the show. It’s truly the ultimate tile and stone experience in North America and it’s all free.
Volunteers will be wearing TPFH shirts and hats to identify themselves to exhibitors on the Coverings show floor.
Are you exhibiting at Coverings this year? Great! Are you planning to take everything back home with you? If not, please consider donating your excess product to Tile Partners for Humanity – our nonprofit partners would truly appreciate it!
And yes, this is the same donation program that Coverings exhibitors, in partnership with Coverings and Freeman, have supported in the past. This will be the EIGHTH year in a row that Tile Partners for Humanity has benefited from the generosity of exhibitors. In that time, we’ve collected DOZENS of trucks of tile, marble, granite, installation materials, tools, backerboard, cleaners, and sealers. Your donations have supported Habitat for Humanity partners in Orlando and Chicago as well as other community improvement organizations in North Carolina, West Virginia, Florida, Indiana and California. This year, we hope to reach even more partners!
Coverings exhibitors have donated enough material to fill dozens of trucks over the years.
So how do you donate? Easy! Email Ally Venugopal at email@example.com or Herb Miller at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know that you’d like to donate. We’ll ask you to let us know what you think you may have and where your booth will be on the show floor. You can let us know if your material will be available before the show opens or after it closes so we know when to collect it. Our volunteers will be on site before, during and after the show wearing Tile Partners for Humanity donation T-Shirts and will tag and label all of the pieces you wish to donate. Freeman has generously offered to remove all donated items from the show floor AT NO COST to exhibitors. If you need for us to organize or stack materials after the show, we can do that. We also ask that if you ship large pieces or slabs that you consider donating the packing crates used to get them to the show. If you don’t need them for other pieces, we’d truly appreciate them for transportation to our partners!
Tile Partners for Humanity is the partnership of tile industry members that collectively support Habitat for Humanity and other nonprofit partners through donations of tile, installation materials, tools, and labor. Since 2003, the industry has contributed in excess of $23 million in materials and labor to Habitat for Humanity and other nonprofit partners. In 2011, TPFH merged with Mountain Re-Source Center, a nonprofit that takes in large donations of ALL types of building materials and distributes them to nonprofit partners around the country. Through the merger, the tile industry will be able to serve an even greater number of families and organizations in need.
Be sure to register for the show today!
Tile Heritage has been collecting and disseminating information about American tile history, both past and present, for the past twenty-five years. The evolution of this preservation and conservation effort continues to be both dynamic and affirming. To provide an avenue for the tile industry to honor its own history has always been a key aspect of our mission. To provide a living, accessible archive into the future is our long-term goal.
In the mid-1990s, the Foundation established a presence on the web providing access for an ever-increasing audience to a wealth of tile-related information and useful resources. The website, www.tileheritage.org, enhances the visibility of our members with its popular Member Tile Gallery and complements our published materials that includes ‘E-News’ that appears on the website. Member support makes this all possible.
In our ever-changing world of technological advances the Foundation’s mission, to preserve tiles and tile making, continues to be imperative. We are challenged to preserve the history of the ways of the past and integrate and document the ways of the present?history in the making! Keeping the craft alive is a responsibility that all of us have embraced. The generous support of our members and sponsors provides the impetus for us to continue our efforts and for other colleagues in the field to join in and become partners as well. The partnership we are engaging in enhances the industry by promoting the craft, disseminating information about tile work in the United States to a worldwide audience.
We appreciate the generous support that Coverings gives to Tile Heritage as a Co-Sponsor of the annual exposition. The show provides a platform for the industry to connect with its historic roots. In addition, this venue, where Tile Heritage is hosted by TCNA, reinforces the strong partnership that has evolved with our members and Tile Industry Sponsors, who together assist in nurturing the THF Mission. Importantly, Tile Heritage honors and records the U.S. tile industry for posterity–its artistry, its craft and its significant installations. Tile Heritage Foundation’s visibility at Coverings each year makes this possible.
Now in its 25th year, Tile Heritage has many people to thank for its continued stability and growing resources. Serving the tile industry and the public with information and counsel regarding historical and preservation issues has been an enriching experience for our founders, Sheila Menzies and Joseph Taylor, one that they look forward to continuing into the foreseeable future.
For an in-depth, recent interview with Sheila and Joe at Tile Heritage hosted by CTDA for Tile Dealer Magazine, visit: http://ceramictiledistributors.org/2012/01/ Members Sustain THF – Join today!
Tile is a ubiquitous decorative finish. It is commonly used as an aesthetic element rather than a building material by architects and interior designers. The earliest usage of tile was for flooring.
‘With regard to all buildings that I design, my first option for floor coverings and wet areas is porcelain tile due to its beauty, durability and sustainability,’ says Michael P Johnson, Principal of Michael P Johnson Design Studios in Cave Creek, Arizona.
The need for sophisticated decorations in buildings inspired advancements in tile manufacturing processes. The realization that floor tiles would be too delicate for heavy usage led to it becoming a decorative wall element. In contrast, we have seen century old buildings inlaid with it, proving its longevity and strength. Ceramic’s pliable nature lends itself to limitless possibilities as far as form and the technology behind it. It becomes an increasingly strong competitor to any other building material mainly because of its durability and low maintenance requirements.
Michael P Johnson
Let me digress…
Michael P Johnson, who was teaching when I was still a student at the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture, was one of the first American designers to incorporate the ventilated facade systems in a US project, using tile. This is a demonstration that tile can be used anywhere.
There are so many possibilities to incorporate tile on the exterior of a building, not only as a floor covering but as part of the building’s structures. Ceramic, porcelain, natural stone, and architecture are converging, provoking the Architecture & Design community to think about these elements as ‘providing the make-up of habitats and structures,’ perhaps like ‘your overall composition that is beyond where they are traditionally featured.’ Architects and designers need to get past the prejudices about the product (tile).
One of the best ways to achieve a sustainable building using tile is to leverage it beyond the decorative. Get informed and inspired as Michael P Johnson of Michael P Johnson Design Studio and I, Lira Luis of ALLL, present our session at Coverings 2012 entitled ‘Tile: From Decorative to Sustainable’ on April 18, 2012 at 8am. Our session – and all educational sessions at Coverings – is free to attend. Click here to register today to join us in Orlando.
Lira Luis is an award-winning principal architect and named ‘Top 20 Under 40’ for 2012 in the Midwest by ENR.
In a first for a US trade show, Coverings is dedicating a booth to its attendees. Booth 3728 is Coverings Central and it’s a hub with a lounge area, Internet access and it’s the site where our speakers will be giving their presentations about social media.
Attendees can find a little bit of everything at Coverings Central. The space will have a dedicated Internet lounge and gathering area. Part of that Internet lounge will be an array of Internet-connected computer monitors that will let anybody check his or her email, Facebook status, FourSquare location or Twitter updates. Coverings is hosting the official Tweetup at Coverings Central on Tuesday, April 17 at 4:00 PM. The following day, Wednesday the 18th at 4:00 PM, Coverings Central will be the site where Tile Magazine sponsors a free happy hour.
Coverings Central will allow you to meet up in real life with the people you already “know” through the social web and will also allow you to learn more about Coverings 2013. In 2013, the Ultimate Tile + Stone Experience is heading to Atlanta, Georgia, April 29-May 2. Stop by the Atlanta photo booth in Coverings Central and get your photo taken in front of famous Atlanta landmarks and take the framed picture home with you.
Next to the lounge, and in its own space will be where our 15-minute social media talks will take place. If you’re curious about how to start a blog, a Twitter account or a Facebook page, Coverings Central is the place to be and our speakers are the people to ask.
Part of the booth too will be the entries in the PROJECT: Green competition, sponsored by ED+C magazine.
Last week, we posted a new preview video to our YouTube channel, and it’s just a shade of what’s to come.
We’re committed to using every medium we have at our disposal to spread the word about the show. As we prepare more videos, they’ll post to our dedicated YouTube channel. Subscribe to our channel so you can catch all of our video updates! OMG National, the official Coverings Video Show Daily producer, also produced this video.
If you are a Coverings exhibitor and want to be included in the Coverings Video Show Daily, please click here.
Let me be the first to say that nothing replaces feeling tile or stone samples in person, nor seeing them applied to surfaces in new and inspirational ways. That’s why we’ll all travel to Coverings this April to get our fill of new textures and new ideas to take back to our clients and design projects.
So here’s the question: How will you pull together those new ideas into a presentation for new and existing clients? I’ve seen my fair share of moodboards or perhaps a collection of samples arranged carefully for a client’s visit to the design studio. Don’t get me wrong, those abstract representations of material selections have their place in the creative process. But are your clients able to take those limited snapshots and imagine them as they would look in their space? I mean really, really see your design vision by looking at a handful of samples arranged side-by-side?
Google SketchUp is the right tool both for fleshing our your design ideas, and for presenting them to your clients in a way they can easily understand and visualize. Unlike other popular 3D design tools, Google SketchUp is both inexpensive and easy-to-learn. More importantly, SketchUp is hands-down the best tool for visualizing materials together in the context of a real project and selling those ideas to your clients. Not only can you ‘sketch’ your design ideas from scratch, but you can also browse through catalogs of real building products and materials to add to your drawings and enhance your design presentations.
I can tell you from first-hand experience that SketchUp is a tool that will change your entire business: You’ll design more efficiently, differentiate yourself from the competition and accelerate your client’s decision making process. Join me at Coverings 2012 on April 19th at 10:30AM for my session Selling Your Project to Customers Using Google SketchUp. For the uninitiated, I will introduce you to what’s possible with SketchUp and give you some key lessons to take home and integrate into your practice. And for those of you who already know SketchUp, I’ll introduce you to game-changing professional presentation and specification tools like LayOut, Product Connect and Shaderlight. In my humble opinion, it’s a session you won’t want to miss!
Register for Coverings 2012 right now to reserve your spot.
These days, seemingly anyone with Internet access can make informed decisions and develop pointed opinions about even the most particular matter. Thus, for architects, designers and manufacturers alike, having an online presence is more important than ever. It is becoming increasingly apparent that preaching to an insular crowd through niche print publications can no longer stand on its own. Instead, the Internet is connecting architecture firms to consumers and clients in ways that were never before possible.
Firms like Brooklyn-based Interboro Partners and international practice JDS / Julien De Smedt Architects are breathing new life into the industry by using the Internet to bring the stories and the inspiration behind architecture and design to the surface. Their consumer-facing websites use strong imagery and intuitive design to invite exploration. Frequently updated news feeds and ‘diaries’ stream alongside lists of recently realized and upcoming projects. Through Twitter and Facebook, architects are facilitating new dialogues with a significantly broader audience. Moreover, they are expanding the scope of architecture beyond just buildings.
click here to register now for free.
When someone asks me why I still attend trade shows for natural stone, I always offer one word: Variety. There’s something about seeing different types of stone – along with other materials – in formats larger than 4′ X 4′ squares that shows the dynamics and possibilities for use.
There’s also the chance to see something new, with the trouping of the aisles at industry event revealing everything from sensational design ideas to topless artists cavorting in front of marble and granite slabs.
Got your attention there with that last item? Admittedly, it’s unlikely you’ll see it at Coverings in Orlando this April… but, then again, surprise is part of variety.
Trade events often get the tag of being passé in today’s age, and that it’s easy to see everything through the online media you’re using to read this. The trick, though, comes with attempting to sift through the millions of references to, say, granite, in a typical web search and pick out something relevant to the right color and movement for a new project.
The Internet offers more chaos than choice overall, and samples still tend to be in the 1′ X 1′ representations that offer little for comparison. Domestic distributors and suppliers almost always do their best in offering a wide selection when visiting a showroom or stoneyard, but there’s only so much material they can handle and perennial favorites (i.e., the stuff that sells best) gets top treatment.
That’s where stone trade events make the difference. Quarries and stone factories (and, in the case of Coverings, ceramic-tile manufacturers) worldwide need a place to get their products in the wholesale supply channel. The happy by-product for architects, designers, fabricators and retail shops is a giant real-time catalog for discovering and sourcing new materials.
For those seeking the ultimate in stone, for example, the centerpost is Marmomacc, where the multitudes converge every fall in Verona, Italy. It’s a pilgrimage that anyone involved with stone should make once, with exhibitors from more than 60 countries offering any dimensional product taken from a quarry.
If Marmomacc suffers from a problem, it’s one of excessive choice. Last year’s event included 11 exhibit halls and four outdoor display areas, giving attendees 823,180 ft² to take in through four days. In a rough comparison, it’s a show two-and-a-half times the size of Coverings.
Shows such as Coverings, though, offer a big advantage with their smaller, more-focused exhibit floor. For one thing, there’s less repetition of stone types. What’s shown at Coverings is also easily available in the United States, so you won’t get your mind set on a particular travertine that might be difficult to obtain from, say, a company based in Teheran.
Despite the economic downturn here, the United States still remains a key market for stone quarriers. U.S. imports of dimensional stone overall ranks second only to China worldwide, and we’re easily the top end-users of stone. If someone really wants to sell, they’ll be at Coverings.
Attendees won’t see everything in stone and allied materials. (For reasons only known amongst themselves, quartz-surfaces manufacturers jointly skip U.S. stone-related events, although this isn’t the case at other international venues.) But, they’ll find an impressive panoply of hard-surface goods and get the edge on what’s new and different.
Emerson Schwartzkopf is editor/publisher of Stone Update, an online news service for the stone and hard-surfaces industry. He can be reached at email@example.com.
Peabody Orlando’s Metropolitan Suite
Coverings has always offered attendees and exhibitors the best rooms at the best rates at the best hotels. New this year, Coverings takes this service one-step farther. Registered attendees and exhibitors who book a room at the Rosen Plaza, Rosen Centre or Peabody Orlando by March 23 through Coverings official housing provider, Travel Planners, will automatically be entered into a drawing to receive one of two incredible upgrades:
One FREE four-night stay in the Peabody’s Metropolitan Suite* with complimentary valet parking
One FREE four-night stay in the Rosen Plaza’s Executive King Suite* with complimentary valet parking
That’s right; Coverings will not only pay for your hotel stay, but will also upgrade you to one of these fantastic suites for FREE. Stay in style during Coverings 2012. Once registered, book your stay at the Rosen Plaza, Rosen Centre or Peabody Orlando through Travel Planner by March 23. Book now and be entered to win.
The fine print: Click here for giveaway terms and conditions.
*Exact level of suite may vary; actual suite may be of equal or similar value.