Potty Talk with Kohler: 2011 Bath Trends

Kohler design tool

Magnetic board helps Kohler Design Center visitors create a custom shower.

During our recent housemoon, I took a break from the family fun to meet with Lauren Aust, a member of the Kohler PR team, who gave up a good portion of a beautiful Saturday morning to chat with me at the American Club’s Greenhouse Cafe, a reassembled antique solarium from across the pond. We talked about bathroom trends and what’s new from Kohler. Speaking of which, though I don’t expect to see one in my house, I had to ask about the Numi.

Have you heard about Kohler’s new Numi? It is truly a throne fit for royalty. As one might expect for the roughly $6,000 price tag, it’s so much more than a mere toilet. The Numi takes some of the most popular features from European (think: bidet) and Asian (think: high tech) commodes and brings them to homes in the US. The Numi provides warm breezes (for your feet as well as, uh, there), it has a playlist of songs to suit your mood and apps to make a the ultimate high-tech toilet.

But it turns out the Numi is symbolic of the latest bathroom trend- customization, custom user experiences. The Numi can save preferred settings for up to six users. (I believe the settings include things like water temperature and pressure, air pressure and temperature of said warm breezes. Really.)

There are more ways to customize a bathroom than with a commode that costs more than my first car. Some of Kohler’s more affordable options include things like their Flipside Handshower, available for less than $100 at Home Depot.

As I learned, er experienced, Kohler offers more possibilities for customizing a shower than I ever imagined. DH is fantasizing about having what he calls “the car wash” shower, with shower tiles at multiple levels, like this from our hotel room:

shower with shower tiles

Or this shower from the Kohler Design Center

custom shower

Even better, check out the DTV System from Kohler with it’s mind-boggling array of possibilities and configurations. On the more affordable end of the DTV system is the Prompt, with fewer features, but still some attractive options, like limiting the length of time your kids spend in the shower.

Or is that only a problem at our house?

It’s dramatic to say our lives have been forever changed  by the showers we saw at the Design Center and the ones we experienced in our hotel room and at the Dancing Waters Spa, but on some level it’s true. We’re definitely going to do something a little special in the shower in the master bathroom we’re putting in.

That seems to be the trend- luxury showers with multiple heads or shower tiles, steam showers, benches- there are so many choices, that custom options exists at a variety of price points.

Once we finish up with our big reno project, we’ll tackle the other two bathrooms in the house and I’ll be tasked with removing the pink and black plastic tile bulls-eye pattern on the ceiling over the main bathtub.

black and pink tile in the bathroom

I guess customizing a bath is an old trend that’s new again.

What have you done to customize your bathroom?

Disclosure- My family and I were guests at Kohler’s Inn at Woodlake in Kohler, Wisconsin. I will be writing more about our experiences at the resort on other websites. I was not required to write this post; all opinions are my own.


9 Responses to Potty Talk with Kohler: 2011 Bath Trends
  1. Jen
    July 7, 2011 | 7:51 am

    I kind of like that tile, actually! It’s sort of retro-hip.

  2. Erin @ One Project at a Time
    July 7, 2011 | 10:59 am

    Let me be the first to say that those fancy toilets are ALL they are cracked up to be! The one the Bath Crashers put in our new master bathroom is fantastic. I thought that I would be completely disturbed by the features, (specifically the bidet) but just between you and me (and all your readers), I love it and I’ll never go back to standard toilet paper. 🙂 The shower with all the jets is amazing too. Of course we got all of our stuff for free, and I would never spend $7K on a toilet, but we are thrilled to have it!

  3. […] It will be a while until I get to the After portion of this bathroom, but a sneak peak at our retro bathroom seemed a natural follow-up to yesterday’s post about modern bath trends. […]

  4. […] blog and come back to comment here. As long as you’re clicking, check out this post on bath design trends for 2011 and take a peek at my pink […]

  5. Susan Bearman
    July 13, 2011 | 10:57 pm

    Gotta say that the Numi leaves me cold (especially the warm breezes) and the $6K hit to own one. That cost more than my first THREE cars combined. Good luck with all the renos.

  6. […] blog and come back to comment here. As long as you’re clicking, check out this post on bath design trends for 2011 and take a peek at my pink […]

  7. Kristina
    July 15, 2011 | 9:00 pm

    Drool! I love it all!

  8. How to Buy a Toilet | Aiming Low
    October 21, 2011 | 2:12 pm

    […] toilets provide many options. Some even come with apps. But let’s pretend you’re not prepared to drop $6,000 for that model, even if it does allow you […]

  9. […] in, right? Our en suite bath was heavily influenced by our Housemoon to Kohler, Wisconsin, home to Kohler. I not only learned about bathroom trends, I got to experience luxurious showers in our hotel room […]