Stainless Steel Strong. Going Retro? Maybe Yes. Maybe No
Michael Rockstroh, senior vice president-marketing for B.S.H., parent company of Bosch and recently also of Thermador, predicted flatly that "retro as such is not going to make a major impact on the appliance market. It's possible, however, that some retro design elements may be visible in the near future."
For example, Bosch offers "thin, fragile-looking handles on our appliances," Rockstroh noted. These could conceivably become bigger, bolder and heavier in response to any overt consumer interest in retro. "I see handles assuming different shapes, sizes and colorsfor a retro touch," he added. But, interest in retro will never be strong enough to supplant stainless steel in the marketplace, he believes: "Stainless steel has such dynamics and so much dimension that I do not see it being crash-landed in the near future."
Jane Crump, media relations manager for Viking, insisted that, "in hard numbers, stainless steel is by far our largest seller. It has been followed by black, white and 10 different designer colors. We've begun seeing a greater interest in color, but probably more from the media than from buyers. If we're selling slightly more color today, that's no indication stainless steel is slipping.