Gifts Today magazine

New plans for Chicago 2016

New branding and category changes planned for 2016 International Home + Housewares Show

New branding, graphics and several category changes are planned for the 2016 International Home + Housewares Show, the International Housewares Association announced today. The Show will be held March 5-8 at Chicago’s McCormick Place.

The new branding focuses on an “It’s smART” theme, which combines smart business decisions directly with the art used to design, create and market products. Show signage and visuals will reflect the melding of smart thinking and smart design. Attendees will see large mobiles and grand portals with intersecting colored bars and semi-transparent panels showing designer drawings of products.

“The International Home + Housewares Show truly is a place where solid business relationships intersect with wonderfully designed products and thus, attending becomes a ‘smART decision,’” explains Phil Brandl, president/CEO of IHA, which owns and operates the Show.

“Over the years as design and innovation have become important to the products the consumer wants, this trend has been reflected through special displays and programs to help attendees find new and innovative products. The new look with ‘smART’ innovation and ‘ARTistic’ design tells our story very directly.”

Along with the Show look, IHA is refining the Expo names and making adjustments to some categories to address the supply and demand for booth space, Brandl said. These changes include:

➢ The Dine + Design Expo is now Dine + Décor and will include the categories tabletop, kitchen accessories + accents and cook + bakeware. The Gourmet Food/Savor Home category will be integrated into other appropriate Show categories.

➢ The Discover Design category will become an Expo and will move to the North Building. The new Discover Design Expo will encompass design-focused exhibitors from all Show categories in one unique location, showcasing the best-of-the-best in design, function and innovation. Participation in the Discover Design Expo requires a review by a jury of retailers and designers.

➢ The Clean, Contain + Sustain Expo has been renamed Clean + Contain and will remain in the North Building and category lines will be realigned.

➢ The Global Crossroads Expo will be renamed the International Sourcing Expo and move to Level 1 of the North Building.

For the 2016 Show, the space application will only be available online. An informational packet with an instructional sheet for completing the online application, along with the floor plans, has been sent to more than 5,000 approved companies plus all 2015 Show exhibitors. The deadline for completing the application is July 3. To receive the early-bird discount, both members and non-members must submit full payment by July 3. If full payment is not sent or the contract/payment is not received by July 3, the exhibitor will pay the full space rate.

Further information about applying to exhibit or registering for an attendee badge is available at

The International Housewares Association is the 77-year-old voice of the housewares industry, which accounted for (US)$322.6 billion at retail worldwide in 2013. The not-for-profit, full-service association sponsors the world's premier exposition of products for the home, the International Home + Housewares Show, and offers its 1,700 member companies a wide range of services, including industry and government advocacy, export assistance, State-of-the-Industry reports, point-of-sale and consumer panel data through Housewares MarketWatch, executive management peer groups, a unique Web-based community at and group buying discounts on business solutions services.

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