Housewares Design Awards

2006 Best in Category: Home Organization, Laundry Care & Non-Electric Cleaning Products

Leifheit International USA Inc.

Galaxy Plus

Can you make a fashion statement with an ironing board? Well, Leifheit International thinks you can, as did the judges at the 2006 Housewares Design Awards. The company’s Galaxy Plus ironing board was selected as the winner in the Home Organization, Non-Electric Cleaning & Laundry Care category.

While ironing remains an unexciting chore around the home, Leifheit has expanded its ironing board assortment in recent years to include items that offer unique functions to make ironing easier while improving the look of the boards as well.

“Winning this award for us was an acknowledgement of how hard we have worked to create quality, innovative products that look good and complement the home,” said Leticia Vargas, Leifheit’s director of sales and marketing services.

Among the unique features of the futuristic looking Galaxy Plus is the board’s built-in outlet that essentially extends the length of the iron’s cord. The board’s outlet and cord are attached to the board’s built-in iron resting plate, giving consumers greater flexibility when ironing.

In addition, the board’s thermolight plastic ironing surface offers effective thermal reflection properties and allows the iron to glide smoothly over the board. The thermolight plastic also conducts heat, allowing a garment to be ironed on two-sides at once.

“This is an unique feature that reduces the amount of time it takes to iron clothing,” she added. “The time-consumer nature of ironing is one of the main dislikes people have with ironing.”

The other key design elements with Galaxy Plus are the item’s weight and look. Made from polypropylene, the board is lightweight for easy mobility and folds compact for easy storage. The curves on the board’s legs and feet also provide and updated look.

“Consumers today continue to pay close attention to how each product they purchase fits within the overall look of their homes,” Vargas said. “As a result, we want to give our ironing boards, and all our products looks that help create beauty in the home.”

In developing new products for new or existing product categories, she noted Leifheit continues to work closely with its retail customers to stay on top of what consumers are seeking from their products, both in terms of look and functionality.

“We always make sure to receive input from our buyers before beginning the design process on any new item,” Vargas explained. “They see what their customers are buying and have first hand knowledge of what they are most interested in.”

While the ironing board segment has been core to Leifheit’s overall laundry care mix, one of several diverse product categories offered by the company, the Design Award win could give the company added visibility in the category.

Vargas noted the company continues to roll out new products in laundry care, including ironing boards, and is also focused on developing new ironing board cover designs to allow consumers to continually update the look of their board.

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