“I believe the ARTS Awards is the highest honor the industry offers.”

-Mark Phillips, Phillips Collection
How it all works...

April 1 - June 30

ARTS Awards is a peer-nominated program open to anyone in the home accents industry. The ease of the online ballot allows for multiple nominations across all categories. Read more.


August - November

Finalists are announced in August and compete by submitting an online presentation highlighting category specific criteria established by the ARTS Awards Committee. Read more.



A panel of judges independently reviews and scores each online presentation. Scores are verified by an independent accouting firm and the list of winners is revealed at the gala. Read more.


January 20, 2017

The culmination of the ARTS Awards process occurs the night of the gala. Finalists are recognized and winners receive the highest honor in the home industry—the ARTS Award. Read more.

April 1 - June 30

The ARTS Awards program seeks to recognize and promote the excellence and achievement of home industry leaders and professionals. Nominations are received online from April 1 – June 28. Home industry professionals nominate manufacturers, retailers, designers and sales representatives to compete for the highest honor in the home industry—the ARTS Award. This is a peer nomination program, and nominators/nominees are not required to be an ART member nor exhibit at the Dallas Market Center.

Award Categories


  • Accent Furniture
  • Area Rugs
  • Home Accents
  • Home Textiles
  • Lamps
  • Lighting Fixtures
  • Outdoor Living
  • Tabletop
  • Wall Decor

  • Furniture Store - Single Location
  • Furniture Store - Multi-Store Locations
  • Outdoor Lifestyle Store
  • International Retailer - Furniture/Home Accents/Lighting showroom eligible
  • Home Accents Store
  • East Atlantic Region
  • Midwest/Southwest Region
  • West Region
  • Lighting Showroom
  • East Atlantic Region
  • Midwest/Southwest Region
  • West Region

  • Sales Representative
  • East Atlantic Region
  • Midwest/Southwest Region
  • West Region
  • Product Designer
  • Interior Designer
  • Academy of Achievement - Individual that has made a significant impact on the home industry

August - November

Finalists are announced in August and receive comprehensive promotion via industry advertising, public relations and social media campaigns. The ARTS Awards brand carries sweeping recognition so finalists and winners are always encouraged to promote their affiliation. Between mid-August to early November, finalists prepare and submit creative presentations online that highlight their award-winning attributes for the panel of judges to independently review and score. Criteria and point values for the digital presentation vary based on the category.


The panel of judges, comprised of home industry experts, convene in November for an intensive review of finalists submissions. They spend hours carefully evaluating each submission based on category specific criteria. In addition to industry judges there is also peer voting from current ART membership which constitutes approximately 5% of finalists scores. After judges submit their scores and ART members vote, the results are tabulated by an independent accounting firm and the list of winners is kept confidential until the ARTS Awards gala.

28th Annual Arts Awards Judges

Steven Avitable
Steelyard Access

Steven Avitable began his career with Gabbert's Furniture and Design Studio and was part of the team that launched The Home Co in 1999, an innovative approach to home retailing. Avitable worked with Robert Allen | Beacon Hill as the VP of furniture and showrooms from 2002-2009 and in 2010, worked with Christopher Guy to open the company's first US retail location in Beverly Hills. Avitable joined Ralph Lauren Home as the senior director of wholesale showrooms and also consulted numerous brands including Calvin Klein Home and Kate Spade Home. Avitable currently works with Steelyard Access as the SVP of business development.

Kelli Ellis
Kelli Ellis

Kelli Ellis, an internationally recognized design psychology expert, artist, licensee and speaker, is the founder of Design Campus and author of the best-selling book, “Do I Look Skinny in this House?”. Ellis has been published in numerous national publications showcasing an outdoor rug collection, two tile collections, an art glass collection, and a successful art line. Ellis began her TV career on TLC'S “Clean Sweep” then starred in HGTV's “Takeover My Makeover”, “Move or Improve”, “Celebrity Holiday Homes”, and recently on “House Hunters Renovation”. Ellis stars in her own show on The Design Network, “Design Therapy”, debuting in the fall.

Bill G. Fortson
BJ's Home Accents, Inc.

Bill G. Fortson, president of BJ's Home Accents, Inc., opened BJ's in 1979 with his business partner John Clements. BJ's Home Accents, Inc. serves the tristate area as a complete design store selling furniture, home accessories and seasonal decor. The store has been awarded the ARTS Award for top Home Accents Store in the Midwest/Southwest five different years, placing them in the ARTS Awards Hall of Fame. The store has also been awarded the Gold Crystal Award by Gifts and Decorative Accessories twice. Fortson has also served on advisory boards for Dallas Market Center and Home Accents Today.

Caroline Hipple
Norwalk Furniture Company

Caroline Hipple is an industry strategist, adventurous merchant, culture advocate and fearless problem solver. She currently serves the industry as president of Norwalk Furniture Company in Norwalk, Ohio. Hipple has been recognized with the WOW Award for Education from Women in the Home Industries Today (WithIt), named Entrepreneur of the Year by Catalog Success magazine, and Storehouse, under her leadership, was a two-time recipient of the ARTS Award as the most outstanding for National Furniture Store and a recipient of the American Furniture Award for Retailer of the Year by Home Magazine.

Susan Inglis
Sustainable Furnishings Council

Susan Inglis, executive director of Sustainable Furnishings Council and founder of From the Mountain, has over 25 years of experience working with artisans and promoting sustainable manufacturing in the home furnishings, fashion, and gift industries. Under Inglis’ direction, SFC has gained national attention and brought the organization widespread recognition as the primary source for verified sustainable home furnishings. She received the 2009 WithIt WOW Award for Education. Inglis exclusively serves as the Green Award judge and reviews only the manufacturing finalists’ submissions.

Jaye Anna Mize
Fashion Snoops

Jaye Anna Mize is the home interiors director for the trend-forecasting agency Fashion Snoops. With a passion for trend psychology, technology and design, Mize has branched across fashion into home and interiors through her development in trend forecasting over the past ten years. Working with major brands worldwide, Mize spends her time covering international events and analyzing key influencers within the home and interior markets.


The formal ARTS Awards gala is held during the January Total Home and Gift Market in Dallas and is attended by hundreds of industry leaders including the major trade media. The evening begins with a networking cocktail hour followed by dinner and then the recognition of finalists and announcement of winners. It’s an incredible and inspiring evening full of pride and celebration. Reservations for the event open November 1st.

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