American Marketer


Architectural Digest to increase design show engagement via direct purchasing options

March 17, 2014


Condé Nast-owned shelter publication Architectural Digest is bringing the pages of its magazine to life with the first shoppable Architectural Digest Home Design Show held March 20-23 in New York.

During the four-day Architectural Digest Home Design Show, now in its 13th year, designers and brands showcase the designs and homewares that grace the pages of Architectural Digest each month. With seminars, curated shopping opportunities and product demonstrations, the Design Show allows Architectural Digest to attract new readers and maintain its current audience by bringing its content and focus into the physical realm.

“The Architectural Digest Home Design Show underscores our brand's position as the international design authority and industry leader,” said Giulio Capua, vice president and publisher of Architectural Digest, New York. “Architectural Digest's power has brought together 300-plus exhibitors and will draw about 40,000 consumers over the course of the weekend.

“Our show parallels our brand DNA and provides exhibitors the opportunity to reach both members of the trade, architects and interior designers, as well as affluent consumers who love great design,” he said. “The show also deepens our ties with many of our partners, and introduces us to potential new ones who want to get involved with our brand.

“Consumers are so inspired by the show every year, and every year many of them want to walk away with something they can put to immediate use in their homes. Many product orders do happen throughout the show based on what consumers see at the hundreds of exhibitor booths, but this year we thought it would be a great addition to add an actual store.”

In living print
For the 2014 Architectural Digest Home Design Show, Architectural Digest is incorporating many opportunities for event attendees to bring home finds.

Architectural Digest will host more than 300 premium design brands such as Bueno Glass, Farrow & Ball paints, Jenn-air appliances, Kalamazoo outdoor ranges and Nasiri carpets on Manhattan’s Pier 94. Exhibitors range from home furnishings and accessories to art and antiques, kitchen and bath products to flooring, fabric and lighting to outdoor products and technologies for the smart home.

Architectural Digest's promotional image for the 2014 Architectural Digest Home Design Show

With an emphasis on attendees bringing home a piece of the Design Show, Architectural Digest has created three spaces where products, artwork and other homewares can be purchased directly.

The first space, called Made, will feature handcrafted, often limited-edition or one-off pieces of furniture, accessories and fine art selected by an Architectural Digest jury.

Nearly half of the 150 participating artisans in Made are first-time exhibitors at the Architectural Digest Home Design Show giving the event an added air of exclusivity.

Debuting for the 2014 Design Show is the Shop ADHDS area. In this section of the Design Show, attendees will have the opportunity to shop the newest designs from brands such as Cire Trudon, The Cooper-Heweitt Museum Shop, DwellStudios + All Modern, Christophe Pourney and The American Design Club.

Also, new for this year’s event is the Outdoor Pavillion where attendees can step outside the exhibitor’s hall to watch product demonstrations and wander through curated open-air lounge spaces.

In addition to showrooms from furniture brand D’Apostrophe, American Range kitchen appliances and Stuv’s wood-burning stoves and fireplaces, attendees will also have the chance to see new product premiers such as the Rockwell Group’s partnership with Caliber, the Rockwell by Caliber grill.

Attendees can also sit in on Design Talk seminars to learn about the industry and current trends. One notable keynote will be presented by Architectural Digest editor in chief Margaret Russell who will discuss the business of design and will be joined by Jamie Drake and Alexa Hampton, both selected for the AD100 featured in the magazine’s January 2014 issue (see story).

Additional talks are hosted by Design Show co-sponsor Jenn-Air’s Steve Brown, host of DIY Newtork’s “Million Dollar Contractor” Stephen Fanuka, designer Campion Platt and Nest marketing pro Maxime Veron who will all speak about how to design in the age of connectivity.

Co-sponosor New York Times will also hold a series of limited-seat seminars in the Jenn-Air Master Class Studio March 22-23. During these sessions, designer Mario Buatta will hold a discussion about his career, design tips and his new book about his work.

Ticket registration information can be found here.

Perfect pairs
Event sponsorships are an ideal way to attract high-end consumers who look for attractive events.

For example, Jenn-Air has partnered with Architectural Digest Home Design Show in the past. The home appliance maker encouraged affluent attendees of the 2013 Design Show to interact with the brand through first-time efforts in partnership with the publication and The New York Times.

Jenn-Air hosted seminars and a sweepstakes at the show and worked with Architectural Digest on a video series. Jenn-Air has looked to get noticed more each year since the event attracts quite a few of its competitors (see story).

Similarly, Condé Nast-owned British Vogue and London department store Harrods are striking a partnership for the third annual Vogue Festival March 29-30 to create a high-end, stylish experience for fashion-minded attendees.

For the festival’s inauguration in 2012 and the following year’s installment, British smartphone manufacturer Vertu joined British Vogue as a partner. This year, with Harrods at the helm, the Vogue Festival will likely attract a larger amount of fashion-forward guests due to the retailer’s status (see story).

Keeping content fresh and new helps to ensure attendees return year after year.

“The Architectural Digest Home Design Show attracts both top trade and consumers under one roof — something that makes our show stand out from the rest of the design show pack,” Mr. Capua said.

“Often we'll see trade professionals shopping the show with their clients because of the quality and wide array of products and categories we bring together under one roof,” he said.

“Consumers who attend our show are design-savvy and discerning — many are longtime Architectural Digest subscribers — and they come to get ideas and inspiration, see some of the top talents in the design and architecture worlds through our speaker series and book-signing events, and even order products from our more than 300 exhibitors.”

Final Take
Jen King, editorial assistant on Luxury Daily, New York