Innovation doesn’t just mean incorporating the latest in smart technology, it also means ensuring your processes are effective to deliver a better service or product. One designer who aims to deliver on both, is Mal Corboy of Mal Corboy Design.

An award-winning, celebrated designer, with more than 25 years’ experience in the design industry, Mal shared with NKBA some of the latest innovative products and services on the market…

Porcelain and PITT
“I think the use of porcelain for benchtops is definitely one to watch. It is a very durable, eco-friendly material and a product that will stand the test of time. The size of the sheet also enables greater creativity from a design perspective and so more innovative design solutions are able to be integrated seamlessly, for example the incorporation of PITT Cooking. Incredibly cool, PITT Cooking, are a Holland-based company that sell separate burners that can be directly integrated into the countertop anywhere on the surface, with everything else hidden below.”

Remote Control
“An obvious innovation in kitchen and bathroom design is our ability to incorporate technology that enables management of devices, products and services through a smart phone. From turning your dishwasher on remotely, through to seeing what is in your fridge while shopping at the supermarket, the options are growing and endless. In the bathroom, we are seeing incredibly intelligent shower systems like the ones by Grohe which offer personalised touch shower experiences at the right temperature, spray volume and power designed for your skin and preference.”

Leave No Trace
“New nano technology has seen the development of high-tech materials that can be used in kitchen and bathroom design to achieve anti-fingerprint coatings on cabinetry doors and bench tops. This is an area we are likely to see further development and as always there are a few products on the market and not all are created equal. Research into the right product for the job is definitely required, but it is definitely one to watch.”

Local Innovation
“Where the products are made also matters and is something that is regularly raised by my clients. They want locally made products and they want to ensure a low carbon footprint when creating their kitchen or bathroom. It is exciting to see more locally owned and operated companies innovating and bringing new products to the market that are just as good, if not better, than what you can buy overseas.”

Fit for purpose
“It’s not all about technology, I love seeing companies considering smarter ways of doing things, for example, hardware that is fit for purpose, more durable, more slimline or providing greater flexibility for the designer and ultimately the user.”

Designing better
“An area that I think is constantly evolving is how we design and present our designs to our clients. The technology now exists to showcase our designs in ways we could never have imagined 10 years ago. There are designs, created on software, that I can’t pick if they are photos of a real kitchen or just a mock-up. They are that good. As designers, this gives us the ability to really inspire our clients and do better.”

“It is an ever changing and very dynamic environment, so at times it can be difficult to stay up to date with the latest in technology and sector innovation. I make it part of my job to spend time researching the latest products, visiting and talking with suppliers and networking with industry to keep up to date with what is new and on the horizon.”