HIRI elects new officers
The Home Improvement Research Institute elected new officers during the group’s quarterly board meeting Tuesday.
Dennis Neumann, manager marketing analysis at Andersen Windows, was elected as HIRI president. Russ Ellis, VP at the Reader’s Digest Association, was elected VP. Rounding out the list of officers, Shawna Martin, market research manager for Masco Corp., was elected secretary.
“HIRI is very excited to enter 2014 with such a talented group of officers,” said Fred Miller, managing director. "Leadership from these highly involved members continues to drive HIRI as a vital source of industry information."
HIRI is a membership-based, independent, not-for-profit organization of manufacturers, retailers, wholesalers and allied organizations in the home improvement industry. Its mission is to be recognized as the primary authority for effective, useful information about home improvement products and services in North America.
Pulte Homes sees ‘soft modern’ ruling the 2014 trend outlook
Pulte Homes has dished on its trend outlook for the new year: soft colors, natural lighting, open spaces, modern details and reclaimed furniture are all of-the-moment design trends for 2014, according to the homebuilder.
"Many of the prevailing trends from 2013 will be seen in 2014, but with a softer and more modern edge," said Janice Jones, VP merchandising for PulteGroup, Inc. "We’ll still see soothing colors, bold accent pieces and open layouts, but 2014 is about mixing and matching a warm, comfortable environment with modern finishes and angular details."
According to the company’s consumer research, buyers still prefer open layouts, with the kitchen serving as the "hub" of the home.
Other trends noted are a proliclivity toward large windows, simple can lighting and under-counter lighting and spotlights. Various shades of gray are also popular in wood flooring, walls, cabinetry and surfaces. Finally, there’s a continuing tendency toward mixing and matching: that of soft, rustic elements and their more angular, modern counterparts.
Bona US opens training center near Seattle
Bona opened a Regional Training Center near Seattle. It is one of six regional training centers launched by Bona over the past few years and is located between Seattle and Tacoma in the West Valley Business Park in the city of Kent, Wash.
The 1,800-sq.-ft. facility is equipped for training on the installation, sand and finish, and care of hardwood floors. Located 10 minutes from Seattle’s Sea Tac International Airport and about 15 minutes from downtown Seattle, the center reflects Bona’s ongoing commitment to educate distributors and contractors on the latest Bona products and best practices in hardwood floor care. The training center will serve the Pacific Northwest, including Washington, Oregon and Idaho, as well as Alberta and British Columbia, Canada.
“This new Seattle Bona Training Center is an ideal environment for contractors and distributors to advance their classroom and hands-on skills with Bona products,” said Tom McNeil, director of professional sales, Bona US. “These training centers help support our growing Bona Certified Craftsman Program, which brings the best technical skills to contractors across the U.S.”
During the grand opening last week, Bona received support and praise from local businesses. Jim Sterling, owner of Sterling Hardwood Floors said, “to have a full-service training venue right here in my backyard is of tremendous value for our company as the industry continues to change.”
Bona offers five additional training centers in Richmond, Calif.; Manalapan, N.J.; Monroe, N.C.; Skokie, Ill.; and Aurora, Colo.