CHICAGO, June 24, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- James Hardie Building Products Inc. (NYSE: JHX) dedicated its most recent trend report to the effects the economic conditions are having on homeowners' aesthetic design decisions, based on a compilation of research. The studies suggest that demand for nostalgic design is increasing, and James Hardie's report affirms this shift within the exterior design industry. "Along with low maintenance and durability, design and authenticity are important attributes to consumers," explains Prashant Panchal, head of marketing for James Hardie. "Our trim, soffit and accessories are becoming just as popular as our traditional HardiePlank® lap siding. Our products offer design flexibility and the authentic look of wood without the worry." According to the report, the shift stems from consumers' desires to make their home a place of "pleasure and comfort." Authentic modern products marry the retro design of the past with the overall value of products that include sophisticated manufacturing processes. Authentic-modern products and building materials enable consumers to reminisce on simpler times while providing the up-to-date technology features that savvy buyers appreciate. Along with James Hardie's Artisan® product line, Victorian-style cooking ranges, vintage-inspired kitchen appliances and the resurgence of claw-foot bathtubs are all recent product introductions that are indicative of this trend. James Hardie Artisan® Lap Siding meets this consumer demand by combining an authentic look with the modern benefits of fiber cement technology. Artisan® Lap Siding has multi-dimensional deep shadow lines that create the look of old growth wood siding, while offering increased durability and low maintenance. Unique tongue and groove joints provide low-profile seams for precise fit and finish. The full report outlines the driving forces behind this shift in buying habits and includes multiple sources for these findings. Additionally, James Hardie has released trend reports on the popularity of low-maintenance products and a report outlining the reasons why homeowners are paying particular attention to outdoor living spaces. Read the Authentic Modern Trend Report at www.jameshardie.com/homeowner/pressReleases.py?id=39. About James HardieJames Hardie is the global leader in fiber cement technology, providing both panel and siding solutions to architects, builders and homeowners for over 100 years. It was the first to introduce fiber cement products to the U.S. in the early 1990s as a durable, low-maintenance alternative to wood and vinyl. James Hardie products combine innovation, versatility and safety by offering a variety of design possibilities matched with specific performance attributes relative to the climate where the product is being used. Currently installed on more than 4 million homes, James Hardie products have earned a favorable reputation within the industry and have been specified in some of the country's most prestigious projects. For more information about James Hardie visit http://www.jameshardie.com and our Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/JamesHardieBP. SOURCE James Hardie Building Products Inc.