Design Disruptors: Trends and Changes Affecting The Design Community

Hosted by Suzanne Felber

DCW KBTribeChat Thermador 10

There are lots of changes, disruptions, and opportunities happening in the design community. They are affecting how we market, who we market to, and how we charge for our services. Lifestylist® Suzanne Felber has been behind the scenes tracking some of these new innovations and changes, and she is anxious to discuss them with the KBTribeChat community.

Houzz has purchased Ivy,  sources like Pottery Barn are now offering free design services, and customers can now purchase their their furniture directly from manufacturers like Bassett or major online presences such as Amazon and Houzz.  How do we convince consumers to hire and pay a fair price to designers? These and other questions are topics we are looking forward to diving into during this KBtribechat.

The KBtribechat Questions: 

Q1: Have you noticed that your customers are shopping online and buying directly?  Have you had customers take your design ideas and buy what you recommended on their own? Explain!

Q2: How do we find companies that will protect our ideas and intellectual property instead of selling directly to our customers?

Q3: Has the Houzz / Ivy acquisition affected you, and if so how?

Q4: What new ideas and innovations are you seeing as far as selling your design services?

Q5: Modular and PreFab housing including tiny homes have really grown in popularity – do you see these types of homes being an opportunity for us?

Q6: Does being active in a trade organization help you market your services? How could those trade organizations do a better job job of promoting you to customers?

Q7: Where do you see the design industry going from here?


Join this Twitter conversation
on Wednesday, March 28
from 2 to 3pm eastern
by adding #KBtribechat to your tweets!

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Outdoor Living Trends

A design discussion!

kaboompics_Jars on a wooden garden table

Our KBtribechat questions:

Spring is here and we’re dreaming of sunny summer days. Bringing the inside out and visa versa is what most of us want for our homes, at least in the warm months.

Q1.) What are your favorite tips to create outdoor spaces with creature comforts?

Q2.) What is trending now with Outdoor Kitchens? (features, materials, appliances, looks)

Q3.) What are your top tips to bring the outdoors in?

Q4.) What are the most desired features in today’s outdoor spaces?

Q5.) Growing our own food is gaining in popularity. What are your favorite ways to incorporate herbs, fruits and vegetables into yards of all sizes?

Q6.) What are some simple and budget-friendly ways to spruce up your outdoor space?

Q7.) Any new, exciting outdoor products, materials or applications you’d like to share?


Join this Twitter conversation

on Wednesday, March 21

from 2 to 3pm eastern time

by adding #KBtribechat to your tweets!

Here’s a link to the transcript for this KBtribechat.

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March 14 at #KBribechat – Why Tile?

A design discussion

Sponsored and Hosted by Coverings.


At Coverings, you can experience nine miles of tile and stone from around the world in one location. Join us in Atlanta May 8 – 11, 2018. We hope to see you at the show!
Click on this link to learn more and register for free.

Our KBtribechat questions:

• Q1) What tile trends are you seeing emerge for 2018 and beyond?

• Q2) Installing tile & stone is a precise process. What steps do you take in your business to ensure a perfect application for clients?

• Q3) Health and wellness are important factors today. How has using tile helped aid in the healthy design of a home?

• Q4) What tile trends or products are most requested by clients for their homes?

• Q5) In today’s busy world, tile offers a low-maintenance and durable alternative to other materials. How have you included tile in a recent project to increase durability?

• Q6) Tile at Coverings comes from all over the world. What cultures or global landmarks have inspired your use of tile?

• Q7) Coverings brings together the best of the tile & stone industry. What kinds of connections are you most excited to make at #Coverings2018?

Join this Twitter conversation

on Wednesday, March 14

from 2 to 3pm eastern

by adding #KBtribechat to your tweets!

Here’s a link to the transcript for this KBtribechat.


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March 7th at #KBtribechat – The Organized Home

A design conversation

Sponsored and Hosted by Rev-A-Shelf.

March 7 KBtribechat blog header

Our discussion questions:

Q1) What are the hardest areas in the house to organize or keep organized?


Q2) The 2018 Kitchen Trends Study by Houzz states “obsession with decluttering” and “optimizing function through custom storage” as key priorities for homeowners. How can designers and manufacturers like Rev-A-Shelf aid homeowners in this pursuit?


Q3) Decluttering is different than organizing- one focuses on purging belongings while the other focuses on rearranging belongings in a more structured manner. This in mind, what are your clients actually seeking?


Q4) Organized homes- what room(s) seem to dictate whether or not your whole home feels truly organized?


Q5) What cabinet(s) is sorely underrepresented in storage solutions?


Q6) Share photos of your favorite organized space, and don’t forget to tell us why it’s your favorite!


Q7) Think big! In regards to organization and storage, how can manufacturers like Rev-A-Shelf better assist designers with their clients?


Q8) Are your clients embracing Smart Home technology to help with organization? How?

Join this Twitter Chat discussion

on Wednesday, March 7

from 2 to 3pm eastern

by adding #KBtribechat to your tweets!

Here’s a link to the transcript for this KBtribechat.

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February 28th at #KBtribechat: Kitchens and Closets – Storage Crossovers

Sponsored by: Cabinets & Closets Conference and Expo produced by Woodworking Network
Hosts: Michaelle Bradford, Editor & Laurel Didier, Publisher – Closets and Organized Storage magazine



A recent Houzz survey found that homeowners are “obsessed” with decluttering kitchen counters and putting things away. What are the absolute “must-haves” for kitchen cabinet storage? What are design elements or storage products that have made their way from the heart of the home – kitchens – to closets and other storage spaces – or vice versa? Join Closets and Organized Storage magazine editor Michaelle Bradford and publisher Laurel Didier for a chat about kitchen and closet crossovers.


The chat is a warm-up for the upcoming Cabinets & Closets Conference and Expo Pasadena, March 27-29. Cabinets & Closets is an event for designers and manufacturers in custom kitchen cabinets, closets and other home storage that will help businesses tap into homeowners’ trending obsession with storage.

KBTribe members receive complimentary Cabinets & Closets Expo Hall admission or $50 OFF any conference pass when they use the code KBTribe18 at online registration. Visit for registration links.



Our KBtribechat Questions: 

Q1: What are homeowner “must-haves” for kitchen cabinet storage?

Q2: Are you seeing “must-haves” for closets, garages and other storage rooms and spaces?

Q3: What are design elements or storage products that could work well in both kitchens and closets, garages and other home storage spaces?

Q4: Have you used closet storage products and accessories in a kitchen design or vice versa? If so, share photos of projects in which islands, backsplashes, tie rods, shoe cubbies, adjustable or slanted shelving, drawer inserts, undermount lighting, etc., crossed over.

Q5: What unique challenges have you faced on kitchen or home storage projects that required “outside the box” design solutions? Share photos and examples.

Q6: Do you have a favorite vendor of kitchen or closet storage solutions, hardware, design software and why?

Q7: How do you stay on top of new storage products and trends? Publications? Trade Shows? Or what is your go-to resource for new storage product news?

Join this Twitter conversation

on Wednesday, February 28

from 2 to 3pm eastern

by adding #KBtribechat to your tweets.

Here’s a link to the transcript for this KBtribechat.

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February 21 at #KBtribechat

Hosted by Laura Muller, Allied ASID of Four Point Design Build Inc.



What is Unity in Design? Unity for us is a result of an organized, transparent collaboration of moving parts working together with a shared objective. Creating elements that support each other to serve a common goal. True collaboration comes when all independent parties (from the designer to the installer, the specialist, and the consultant) work together, with roles clearly defined from the first meeting through project completion. The concept rings true especially in kitchen and bath design and build. It’s critical to the project success to understand who and how their roles affect the decisions made. For collaboration to work, the lead project manager must create an inclusive project environment, while maintaining balance and authority and it is critical to include the experts; the product manufacturers; the specialists; the installers; and contractors…every step of the way.



The KBtribechat questions:

Q1. What does unity and collaboration in design mean to you?

Q2. How has collaboration shifted your process now that the internet makes costs and comparisons so transparent?

Q3. How do you retain your mystique as a designer while working in full collaboration and transparency?

Q4. What are some of the benefits that you can share as a result of collaboration?

Q5. How do you balance full inclusive collaboration while maintaining authority as the designer/project manager?

Q6. What trends have you seen lately that are influencing collaboration in the design industry, that weren’t happening 10 years ago? Share pics.

Q7. When building a successful team, communication and collaboration is vital. What are some tips for communicating with numerous team members?

Q8. How important is your relationship with your suppliers and manufacturers and how do you optimize communication and collaboration?

Q9. What are some top brand collaborations today, and why is it so important to the design industry?

Q10. As designers, what’s the most important thing about your relationship with your manufacturers/suppliers and vice versa?

Q11. When it comes to kitchen and bath design, what are some top tips to creating a unified cohesive space? Share pics.

Q12. Is social media an important element in collaborating with your favorite manufacturers?

Q13. Has social media helped you build your brand’s relationships with product manufacturers? Why is this relationship so important?


Join this Twitter conversation

on Wednesday, February 21

from 2 to 3pm eastern 

by adding #KBtribechat to your tweets.

Here’s a link to read the transcript.

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A Valentines Day #KBtribechat

Transforming Master Bathrooms into Luxurious Retreats. 

Puma Marble Company

Puma Marble Company

The KBtribechat Questions:

What do you love? 💕

Q1) What makes a shower luxurious? What’s new with shower doors? Drains? Fixtures? Finishes? Surfaces?

Share pictures of bathrooms you love!

Q2) What about lighting? From functional to decorative, how do you incorporate lighting into a bathroom retreat?

Q3) What luxurious surfaces and accessories do you love for a well appointed vanity area?

Q4: What are your favorite tech integrations for a luxurious bath?

Q5: How does personalization translate to luxury?

Q6:  What features would be included in your ultimate Master Bathroom retreat? Share pictures!


image from MS International


This week we’ll be pinning to our KBtribechat group board – Bathroom Design Ideas.

Let us know if you’d like to be added!


Join this Twitter conversation

on Wednesday, February 14

from 2 to 3pm eastern

by adding #KBtribechat to your tweets!

Here’s a link to the transcript for this KBtribechat.

Leave a comment

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