Dallas Interior Design Blog

Innovations from Jenn-Air Designer Forum

Art and accessories may make a home look beautiful, but they do little to help us with everyday tasks. That’s where home appliances come in. And with today’s technologies and finishes, they’re looking quite dazzling on their own!

I had the privilege recently of attending the Jenn-Air Designer Forum at the World of Whirlpool in Chicago. Design specialists from around the country were invited and treated to a visit to the Windy City to explore the latest in home appliance technologies.

The World of Whirlpool facility is a showstopper in itself. The 30,000-square-foot facility is located in the penthouse of the historic Reid-Murdoch Building in downtown Chicago.

World of Whirlpool

The Chicago landmark was built in 1914 and once used as a makeshift hospital after the S.S. Eastland capsized in the Chicago River on the opposite shore. It also contains 12 state-of-the-art demonstration kitchens, interactive laundry showrooms and innovative meeting spaces.

For two days, experts from the world’s leading appliance brands shared their knowledge and educated us on the latest in home appliances. All of the products showcased were extraordinary, but of course I have my favorites and want to share them!

Black Stainless Steel

Black Stainless Steel

Can’t decide between black or stainless steel kitchen appliances? Now you don’t have to choose. You can have both with KitchenAid’s black stainless steel!

KitchenAid has introduced the first-ever black stainless steel finish in the appliance industry, and it is stunning! The finish has all the same material qualities as stainless steel, but in a warmer tone. Plus, it hides fingerprints and other marks! I love using contrasting colors in kitchen designs, and this finish offers so many new and exciting options.

Steam & Convection Oven

Steam and convection ovens are one of the hottest (no pun intended) trends in appliances, and for good reason. Steam preserves nutrients in vegetables and tenderness in meats, while convection heating cooks food more evenly and quickly. Combining the two results in healthier, better cooking – food that’s tender inside and roasted or crisped outside

To showcase the oven’s abilities, the Jenn-Air chef cooked salmon and creme brûlée at the same time. There was absolutely NO flavor transfer and both were delicious! The ovens are so popular, many of our clients are choosing to omit a microwave from their kitchens and rely solely on a steam and convection oven instead.

Induction Cooktop

Jenn air induction cooktop

Another appliance heating up the marketplace is the Jenn-Air induction cooktop. Induction cooking heats the cookware, rather than the surface of the cooktop, through magnetic induction. This keeps the surface of the cooktop cool to the touch and easily cleaned. Induction cooktops are also extremely energy efficient, offer precise temperature control and heat up more quickly than a traditional gas or electric cooktop.

As an added bonus, a dishwasher-safe silicone pad can be placed on top of the cooktop, between the cooktop and cookware while cooking. The pad can then be thrown into the dishwasher after cooking for super easy clean up! Four of our clients have already chosen to substitute an induction cooktop for an electric range, and all have raved about them.

The Food!


Of course, the trip wasn’t all work and no play. While showcases the appliances and their abilities, chefs prepared some of the best food I’ve ever tasted.

The “broken cone” dessert was without a doubt my favorite! Homemade vanilla ice cream with salted caramel and chocolate pieces was served with broken cone pieces with a hint of peanut butter to scoop up the deliciousness. I literally could have licked the plate!


Source of Images: Barbara Gilbert Interiors and Jenn-Air.

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