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This page is to familiarize yourself with the rules of the competition prior to submitting your entry. 

Since 1999, the Kitchen & Bath Business Designs of the Year (formerly Design Awards) competition has honored outstanding kitchen, bath and showroom design and those who create it. It is an independently judged awards program recognizing kitchen, bath and showroom design. 

In addition to Showroom of the Year, Kitchen of the Year and Bathroom of the Year (and possible second- and third-place winners), we will also include awards for Best Sustainable Design, Best Balanced Budget Design, Best Universal Design, Best Smart Design and Best Use of Color.*

The Designs of the Year Awards will open at 9:00 a.m. EST on December 28, 2018, and will end on June 17, 2019, at 5:00 p.m. EST (the "Entry Deadline"). All entries must be received by the Entry Deadline.

Competition fee is $125 per entry/project, and no refunds of entry fees will be issued. The competition fee will cover the regular categories (Kitchen, Bath or Showroom of the Year), and NEW THIS YEAR: if you wish to enter for a specialty category or categories (i.e., Best Use of Color, Best Sustainable Design), you DO NOT need to pay an additional entry fee.

Submit Your Project

Step 1. Read the rules page before getting started with your entry.
The rules page explains how to enter, cost of entry, and the categories for this competition.

Step 2. Create a login that will save all your entry information. 
Once you create a login, you can begin uploading your entry info. You will be able to save it and come back at a later time to finish the process if necessary. To access the entry form you must first create a login. Once you create a login, you will arrive on part one of the entry form—the rules page. You will be required to certify that you have read and understood the rules document before you move on to the entry form.

Create your login now

Step 3. Fill out the entry form.
The entry form is split into three parts. The first part is to read and certify the rules page. On the second part, you will input the project description, project details, etc. The third part you will upload all project images to the system.

Step 4. Pay for your entry.
Payment is accepted with a Paypal account or with a credit/debit card (through Paypal's website).


  1. Projects that have not been submitted for a previous KBB Designs of the Year (formerly Design Awards) competition must have been installed/completed within the last 12 months up until the competition ends (Dec. 28, 2017, to June 2019). There is no limit to the number of entries per entrant as long as the projects have been completed within that timeframe.
  2. All decisions made by KBB are final.
  3. *Judges are not required to choose a winner in a specific category if they feel the projects submitted do not warrant an award or do not meet our criteria. If a project does not fulfill the criteria listed under a specific category, KBB and/or the judges have the right to eliminate the project from consideration under that category.
  4. All questions on the entry form must be answered fully to help judges better understand the project scope, its solutions and innovation. Failure to fill in required fields or to provide the wrong information may result in disqualification.
  5. Professional-quality, high-resolution, digital photography (under 5MB please) must be submitted with each completed entry form. Multiple views of each project are required. Identify each image with the name of the project or the design firm. By submitting photography, you are granting KBB the right to publish it free of charge. Any photographer’s fees are the responsibility of the submitter. You can submit up to 12 photos/floor plans, making sure there are at least four photos of your project. Both floor plans and photos must be in JPEG format, each under 5MB.
  6. By submitting photography, you (a) represent and warrant that you own the exclusive rights and/or have obtained all necessary third-party consents to submit such images for consideration, (b) grant Sponsor and its designees, licensees or affiliates a fully paid, worldwide license to use, distribute, display, reproduce, publish, republish and create derivative works of the entry in any media now or hereafter known, including but not limited to, print or digital publication in KBB magazine and (c) agree to indemnify, defend and hold harmless Sponsor and its partners, affiliates, subsidiaries, advertising agencies, agents and their employees, officers, directors, and representatives from any and all third-party claims arising from the entry and use of any such images submitted in connection with the competition.
  7. There are no limitations on professional affiliation of the entrant. Entries from dealers, interior designers, kitchen and bath specialists, architects, builders and other related building and design professionals are welcome to submit an entry for consideration.
  8. Employees of KBB and Sponsor, and each of their affiliates, subsidiaries and agents and their immediate family members (spouse, parent, child, sibling and their respective spouses, regardless of where they live) or persons living in the same households of such individuals, whether or not related, are not eligible to enter. Entrants must be at least 18 years of age as of the date of entry.
  9. By participating, participants release and agree to hold harmless Sponsor, its parents, subsidiaries, affiliates, advertising and promotion agencies and all of their respective directors, officers, employees, representatives and agents from any and all liability for any injury, loss or damage of any kind to persons (including, without limitation, death) or property, arising directly or indirectly, in whole or in part, from or in connection with the acceptance, possession, use or misuse of any prize, participation in this competition or any competition-related activity. NOTWITHSTANDING THE FOREGOING, IN THE EVENT THAT THE PRECEDING RELEASE IS DETERMINED BY A COURT OF COMPETENT JURISDICTION TO BE INVALID OR VOID FOR ANY REASON, THE PARTICIPANT AGREES THAT, BY ENTERING THE COMPETITION, (I) ANY CLAIMS, JUDGMENTS AND AWARDS SHALL BE LIMITED TO ACTUAL OUT-OF-POCKET COSTS INCURRED, BUT IN NO EVENT ATTORNEYS’ FEES; AND (II) UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES WILL ANY PARTICIPANT BE PERMITTED TO OBTAIN ANY AWARD FOR, AND PARTICIPANT HEREBY WAIVES ALL RIGHTS TO CLAIM, ANY OTHER DAMAGES, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, PUNITIVE, INCIDENTAL OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES.

Projects must meet our criteria and will be judged on fulfilling client requirements; overcoming challenges; and innovative thinking regarding styling, function, product usage/selection and technology. Projects to be considered for specific categories – which is optional – have additional criteria to meet (listed below). Entries may be disqualified if they do not meet the criteria. Entries must be for projects that have been completed in North America.

Additional Criteria for Optional Specialty Categories
When submitting your entry for a specialty category, you will first need to select a regular category from the drop-down menu. After doing that, you will have an opportunity to select one or more specialty categories. You do not have to pay an additional fee to enter for one or more specialty categories, which is optional.

Best Sustainable Design. Describe how you used sustainable design practices and principles in your project to promote environmental responsibility and health and well-being. How did you include those principles in your product and material selection? Please list those products and materials.

Best Universal Design. Describe how you used universal design and/or aging-in-place criteria throughout your project to address accessibility, usage, health and well-being. How did you use those criteria in your product and material selection? Please list those products and materials.

Best Balanced Budget. Describe how you were able to design a successful project within the client's budget parameters. Please describe the areas in which you splurged and saved, as well as any other solutions you came up with, to keep the project on budget. Please provide a budget sheet as a PDF in the field provided.

Best Smart Design. Describe how you implemented technology into your project in response to the connected home trend. How do those elements/products contribute to the user’s comfort, convenience and peace of mind? Please list the tech-savvy products you specified.

Best Use of Color. Describe how your use of color sets this project apart from others. What was the philosophy and inspiration behind the colors you chose?

Judging will take place after the contest is officially closed. A panel of kitchen and bath industry professionals will evaluate entries on the criteria listed. *Judges are not required to choose a winner in a specific category if they feel the projects submitted do not warrant an award or do not meet our criteria. If a project does not fulfill the criteria listed under a specific category, KBB has the right to eliminate the project from consideration under that category.

Winners Announcement
The winners will be announced and featured in the KBB September issue and on kbbonline.com once the September issue has mailed. All projects will be considered by KBB editors for future placement in the magazine or online. There are no monetary prizes.

Entrants agree (a) to be bound by these Official Rules and (b) that the decisions of the judges and KBB are final on all matters relating to the Design Awards.

Governing Law
By entering, participants agree that all issues and questions concerning the construction, validity, interpretation and enforceability of these Official Rules, or the rights and obligations of participants and Sponsor in connection with the competition, shall be governed by, and construed in accordance with, the substantive laws of the State of California without regard to its conflicts of law provisions. All participants hereby consent to the jurisdiction and venue of the federal or state courts located in Orange County, Calif.

Contest Sponsor
The sponsor of the Design Awards is Kitchen & Bath Business magazine (KBB), Emerald Expositions, LLC, 1145 Sanctuary Parkway, Suite 355, Alpharetta, GA 30009 ("Sponsor").

For questions, you may contact KBB executive editor, Chelsie Butler, Chelsie.Butler@emeraldexpo.com