Cartersville-based flooring company Patcraft, which is part of Shaw Industries, won two awards — one for innovation and one for healthcare flooring — at the NeoCon commercial interiors industry show in Chicago in June.
It received an Innovation Award for its Deconstructed Metal product, which is unique in that exposes the primary backing as part of the product design, and a Gold Award in Healthcare Flooring for its Life & Style broadloom collection.
Patcraft Vice President of Creative and Design Pamela Rainey said each product required the collaboration of many team members, which made receiving the awards an even more gratifying experience.
“It really means a lot to the team and the brand,” she noted. “And when I talk about the team, we have a creative team that does product development, and that consists of a lot of different types of people. We have designers, and we have technical support staff, and we also have cross-functional teams that partner with manufacturing as well. And then, even people on the yarn side that lend their expertise. So it’s meaningful to all of us to be recognized — especially in the innovation category — and to know that you’re bringing innovation to floor covering and kind of leading the way and leading the pack.”
Delving further into the uniqueness of Deconstructed Metal, Rainey said many flooring manufacturers try to prevent the primary backing of their product from being visible at all.
“It’s ironic in some ways because most manufacturers have spent a lifetime working to cover the backing up. Then we came along and said ‘Hey, let’s expose the structure,’” she pointed out. “You may have seen watches where they show the internals gears and mechanisms, and that’s part of the design. Or even in a building, where thay may show the iron structure or the air conditioning vent. All of that’s exposed, and that’s part of the design.”
As for the Life & Style broadloom collection, Rainey explained that it was originally intended to be designed as a flooring used for residential spaces housed in commercial buildings.
However, it was ultimately recognized for its potential healthcare applications. According to a press release, the product contains a “scale and pattern variation to meet distinct needs within a space, while maintaining a cohesive look.” Megan Dmitrenko, lead designer of Life & Style, added that it is “easily maintained and protected against accidents common through all life stages.”
Vice President of Marketing Jeff West said he was honored that Patcraft had won multiple awards.
“It’s a huge honor because NeoCon is really the largest commercial design show in the country that’s held each year, and so, to win not only one award but to win two awards — one in healthcare and one in innovation — really is a very positive thing for us.”
Patcraft is no stranger to winning awards at NeoCon, having won several prior to 2015, including a Gold Award in Carpet Tiles for Mixed Materials in 2014. Rainey said keeping the creative process moving forward each year requires a sustained effort by team members at Patcraft.
“What we do after we get back from NeoCon, is we get our team together and we have a visioning session. We usually go off site. And we did that this year in July. ... Everybody threw their ideas and their thoughts about what’s new, what’s trending. And we’re already starting that discussion about, ‘What does next year look like?’ So it’s a constant evolution of ideas,” she explained.
West echoed Rainey’s sentiment, adding that close attention to specific markets is vital to continued success as well.
“I think the key is really a focus on the future and looking beyond just what’s going on in flooring but looking [at] what’s going on in the market in general, whether it be consumer or the commercial market.”
According to the press release, NeoCon has been held for over 45 years at The Merchandise Mart in Chicago and showcases more than 700 exhibitors from the commercial and residential interior design markets, including flooring, furniture, textiles, technology and more.