A look back at NeoCon 2018

August 1, 2018

"They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself."
Andy Warhol

‘Sometimes, work is play,’ read the welcoming text at the entrance to this year’s booth at NeoCon, and indeed who could argue with such a sentiment when surrounded by the joyful interactions taking place all around? Change was the underlying theme for our brand, a powerful statement of innovation and creativity showcased by new products, new materials and new ways of thinking, all brought together in our new showroom.

One of the most ‘Instagrammed’ products at NeoCon— Inside Shapes is the groundbreaking result of a creative collaboration with Stockholm-based design studio Form Us With Love. It’s a creative toolkit that offers four basic shapes cut from within a basic square, that can be combined in endless ways, within a spectrum of twelve colors with light and dark variations. The playfully sophisticated examples on display had everyone excited to ‘meet the shapes.’ Permission to play was an almost superfluous statement as the urge to create and explore was instantaneous.

Miniature Inside Shapes pieces and virtual reality headsets that allowed visitors to explore the infinite possibilities were hugely popular, along with giving people a glimpse into this powerful new design tool that transforms carpet tile into a platform for creativity. It gave us a hint of the impact it will have in the A&D community as they use it to shape their visions of dynamic new environments.

Meet our creative collaborators. The team from Form Us With Love made the trip from Stockholm to Chicago to be present at the launch and celebrate the final results of a two-year long process.

Inside Shapes appeared all over social media, drawing praise from design blogs, industry press and winning Interior Design Magazine's HiP Award for Best Workplace Flooring!

It was another award winning year all round, along with Inside Shapes, the Haven collection won Metropolis Magazine’s #MetropolisLikes award and Gold in Contract’s Best of NeoCon for Modular Flooring, and Natural Choreography won Silver in Contract’s Best of NeoCon for Hard Surface.

‘Imagination is innovation’ was another concept that closely linked all of the elements on display this year, none more so than our new PET Resilient product, a true innovation that uses 16 recycled bottles per square foot, 64 recycled bottles per plank and no plasticizers, chlorine or PVC . Created with purpose and intent, PET Resilient is the result of a quest by our designers and engineers to stretch the limits of what is possible in resilient flooring. The product will officially launch late 2018.

Style, design and creativity on display—hard to imagine that the Palette collection in the showroom was made with more than 17,000 recycled bottles.

Another step ahead, this time with the award winning Natural Choreography collection, a collaboration with architecture and design firm, Rockwell Group. Cut, an end-cut block wood visual, and Shear, a marble visual offer a unique and affordable solution for these luxurious materials that are often rare and expensive, in Shaw Contract and Rockwell Group’s first hard surface offering.

A dramatic menu of colors and patterns highlighted the versatility of Natural Choreography. Classical interiors were evoked with a range of samples on display that spanned a light Carrara marble to a deep onyx color finish, and a luxe metallic inlay cleverly contained in the concentric end-cut wood visuals.

Finally, bringing it all back home with Haven, the collection that redefines how we think of home, offering comfort and a profound sense of place. Even in the busy atmosphere of NeoCon, its restful qualities allowed for moments to pause and reflect.

NeoCon offered fresh challenges and creative fun, spurring our imaginations to roam free while stimulating the senses in ways both large, small and unexpected. A home for thought and a place to reflect summed up by the ethos of Haven.