Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Carpet, Rugs, Bathmats and Trends: Bathroom Blogfest 2011

Carpet, Rugs, Bathmats and Trends: Bathroom Blogfest 2011
Mohawk Home Bath Mat

Bathroom Blogfest 2011: The U.S. Carpet Industry Takes it to the Mat as Carpet and Rug Institute’s Bethany Richmond Discusses the Colorfast and Furriest in Bath Mat Trends

A few weeks ago, I slipped and fell getting out of the bathtub. In a classic ass-over-teakettle move, I stepped out of the tub, placed my damp foot on the tile floor and slid, caroming off the doorjamb and falling, arms akimbo. (Wow - four of my favorite words in one sentence!)

It was my own blessed fault – I forgot I had taken up the bathmat to wash.

You might say I was a victim of my own messaging. For the past three years on the Carpet and Rug Institute blog, I’ve been telling everyone that carpet and rugs cut down on slip and fall accidents. CRI President Werner Braun is fond of quoting an old insurance industry statistic that says you are 7 times more likely to fall on hard floors than on carpeted ones and 7 times less likely to hurt yourself if you do fall on carpet. As I lay there, sprawled on the eponymous hard-as-rock floor, experiencing the only moment of my life I will ever be happy to have a behind equipped with ample natural padding, it came to me that somehow I would work this episode into a blog post. The sixth annual Bathroom Blogfest seems like my chance.

Mohakw Home NY Showroom
Mohawk Home's NYC Showroom
I represent the carpet industry, so each year for the Bathroom Blogfest I write about bathroom rugs. For my previous posts, I have sought inspiration from David Record, who works for Mohawk Home, America’s #1 bath mat manufacturer and importer. Again this year, David proved himself to be a gracious and generous font of information.

When I asked him to discuss the trends in bathroom rugs, David said (much like the man who said “plastics” to Dustin Hoffman in The Graduate), that the word this year was: memory foam.

Memory foam rugs, he said, cut into various shapes and covered with different materials, have been the hot new trend in bath mats for several seasons at the New York Home Textiles Market and were showing no signs of slowing.

Also big, David said, are bath mats made with micro-denier polyester. Denier is a measurement of the thickness of a yarn. Since most carpet fibers are 15-20dpf (denier per filament) and the yarns from your standard-issue nylon bath mat average around 3-8 dpf, you can image how soft and downy rugs made from 1dpf polyester must feel. Fine as frog’s hairs, as we say in Georgia.

But there’s a flipside to the hot and new story. Both of these increasingly-popular bathmat styles (according to David, memory foam has gone from 0 to 10 percent of the market in just two years; micro-denier polyester has captured close to 7 percent share seemingly overnight) are imported, mostly from China.

What’s still made in the U.S.? Good news: nylon bathmats, those tireless (and predominately solid-color) workhorses of the home textile world are still made here. According to David, foreign manufacturers, for all their flair for the new and unique, cannot match the quality or price of good old Mr. Solid American Nylon. He may not be sexy, but next time I find myself in Kohl’s or Target, JC Penney or WalMart, and I feel the need for something new to liven up my Loo,  I know whom I’ll choose. Because, from my outpost here in Dalton, Georgia, the stoic, but hard-pressed carpet manufacturing capital of the world, “climbing out” begins, emphatically, at home.

~ Bethany 



The "climbing out" participants of the 2011 Bathroom Blogfest include:              

NameBlog NameBlog URL
Susan AbbottCustomer Experience CrossroadsCustomer Experience Crossroads
Paul AnaterKitchen and Residential Designhttp://www.kitchenandresidentialdesign.com
Shannon BilbyFrom the Floors Uphttp://fromthefloorsup.com/
Toby BloombergDiva MarketingDiva Marketing Blog
Laurence BorelBlog Till You Drophttp://www.laurenceborel.com/
Bill BuyokAvente Tile Talkhttp://tiletalk.blogspot.com
Jeanne ByingtonThe Importance of Earnest Servicehttp://blog.jmbyington.com/
Becky CarrollCustomers Rock!http://customersrock.net
Katie ClarkPractical Katiehttp://practicalkatie.blogspot.com/
Nora DePalmaO'Reilly DePalma: The Bloghttp://www.oreilly-depalma.com/blog/
Paul FriederichsenThe BrandBiz Bloghttp://brandbizblog.com/
Tish GrierThe Constant Observerhttp://spap-oop.blogspot.com/
Elizabeth HiseFlooring The Consumerhttp://flooringtheconsumer.blogspot.com
Emily HooperFloor Covering News Bloghttp://www.fcnews.net/category/blog/
Diane KazanUrban Design Renovationhttp://blog.urbandesignrenovation.com
Joseph MichelliDr. Joseph Michelli’s Blog http://www.josephmichelli.com/blog
Veronika MillerModenus Blog http://www.modenus.com/blog
Arpi NalbandianTile Magazine Editors' BlogTile Editor Magazine Blog
David PolinchockPolinchock's Ponderingshttp://blog.polinchock.com/
Professor ToiletAmerican Standard's Professor Toilethttp://www.professortoilet.com
David Reich my 2 centshttp://reichcomm.typepad.com
Victoria Redshaw & Shelley PondScarlet Opus Trends Bloghttp://www.trendsblog.co.uk
Sandy RenshawPurple Wrenhttp://www.PurpleWren.com
Bethany RichmondCarpet and Rug Institute BlogCarpet and Rug Institute Blog
Bruce D. SandersRIMtailinghttp://www.rimtailing.blogspot.com
Paige SmithNeuse Tile Service bloghttp://neusetile.wordpress.com/
Stephanie WeaverExperienceologyhttp://experienceology.blogspot.com/
Christine B. WhittemoreContent Talks Business BlogContent Talks Business Blog
Christine B. WhittemoreSmoke Rise & Kinnelon Bloghttp://smokerise-nj.blogspot.com/
Christine B. WhittemoreSimple Marketing Bloghttp://www.simplemarketingblog.com/
Ted WhittemoreWorking Computershttp://www.kinneloncomputers.com/
Chris WoelfelArtcraft Granite, Marble & Tile Co.http://www.artcraftgmt.com
Patty WoodlandBroken Teepeehttp://www.brokenteepee.com/
Denise Lee Yohnbrand as business biteshttp://deniseleeyohn.com/bites/

1 comment:

C. B. Whittemore said...

Bethany, as I tell you many times - you know how to tell a story! Beautiful job with the theme and will updating us on the state of carpet, rugs, bathmats and trends.

Thank you so much!

Best,
CB

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