July 13, 2020
ASID Honors Material Bank with Design Innovation Award
The award recognizes Material Bank’s contributions to the design industry and radical rethinking of how designers sample materials.
At their annual Spotlight event, held digitally this year from July 13–16, the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) celebrated the winners of its annual array of awards, including the Outcome of Design Awards; the inductees to the ASID College of Fellows; the Ones to Watch; and the ASID National Awards. The organization also recognized Material Bank, the innovative platform for sampling design materials, with the Design Innovation Award.
Given each year since 2011, the award is intended to spotlight an individual, organization, manufacturer, or research project that makes a significant contribution to the interior design world through “positively impacting human behavior; promoting comfort, efficiency, or communication; exemplifying a commitment to the profession; exhibiting a commitment to sustainability, health, and wellness; and displaying an overall appreciation for design.”
A SANDOW company and sister brand to Metropolis, Material Bank is a radical, streamlined new way to sample design materials. Through its digital platform, architects and designers around the country can search a massive database of architectural and design products from leading manufacturers and order samples directly from a single source. After a designer places an order, Material Bank’s fulfillment system packages the requested samples in a reusable box and ships them overnight. All of this is guaranteed with an almost unbelievable promise: all orders placed before midnight will arrive by 10:30 the following morning. After they’re done with the samples, designers simply place them back in the box and mail it back to Material Bank’s Tennessee center, reducing waste and inefficiency in both packaging and shipping.
“Being recognized for innovation by ASID, an organization that we admire and is doing great things for the industry, means a great deal to us,” says Adam Sandow, founder and CEO of SANDOW. “We are grateful to ASID and would also like to thank the design community for embracing Material Bank, as well as thank all of our brand partners for their willingness to innovate and provide designers with the best and most efficient tools to do their jobs.”
Material Bank aims to reshape the way designers interact with material suppliers: Instead of contacting multiple manufacturers and requesting individual samples from each, Material Bank recognizes the need of designers to have easy and rapid access to physical material samples from disparate companies. The system is a step in the right direction sustainability-wise, since samples are recovered and can therefore be reused. And by combining samples from multiple sources, Material Bank says it will prevent over 800,000 packages from being needlessly shipped this year.
Upheavals around the world and within the A&D industry have only accelerated the need for a simpler way to sample, continues Sandow: “Designers’ time is increasingly limited, so we are constantly thinking about the next generation of services and tools that the industry will rely on. Material Bank’s month-over-month dramatic growth is a result of the changing demands of the industry and our ability to meet its needs.”
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