Posted in Computered Design Programs, Planning

InnoDraw: Digital Measuring Services for KBB showrooms

We’ve all been there, you or your company goes out to measure a job site, photographs the site, double check’s the measurements. However, when inputting the dimensions back at the office you realize you are missing a dimension or something does not add up requiring another trip back out to the job site. There is a service being offered, not nationwide yet, but well worth looking into. A digital measuring service will eliminate expensive measuring errors and CAD design-related costs are significantly reduced.

InnoDraw is a cutting edge Digital measuring service especially suited to the needs of the KBB market in the 21 Century. Customized software and extremely accurate laser measuring devices together with a strong service orientation, provide the ultimate solution for a variety of home improvement projects in the KBB market.

InnoDraw provides a win-win solution for designers, fabricators and their clients.

Compared to using fabricator’s own employees for templating:

  • Templating is now a job cost, not included in fixed overhead
  • The InnoDraw Measuring Specialist works with fabricators’ personnel to get the best value from the service
  • Save up to 40% or more in templating costs
  • Fabricator can work with InnoDraw Measuring Specialists in other locales, avoid long distance commutes and employees’ time

    Compared to mechanical and “stick” templating:
  • Light-weight and highly portable (everything packs into a small shoulder bag)
  • Less set-up time and on-site assembly
  • Measuring Specialist can complete all details on site thus eliminating additional steps in the shop and send directly to fabrication
  • Increased measuring accuracy (about 3/100” at 100’ plus)

InnoDraw  combines laser technology and powerful software together with many years of experience in  the most innovative measuring system available in this market.

Check out this real time video of a kitchen measure:
http://www.screencast.com/t/PuOMcanOCXDy

Posted in Computered Design Programs, Home Automation, Kitchen Automation, Kitchens of the Future, Luxury Kitchens, Men in the Kitchen

The Future of Sourcing Product Materials

I am lucky to have great friends who share really cool ideas with me. This one came from my K & B designer pal Kathy Phillipson who shared this web link, The future of shopping, from Flixxy.com.

In this video, software designed by Cisco,  shows a virtual clothes shopping experience. But can you imagine the possibilities in the Kitchen and Bath Industry? Download a photo or import a new computer rendering of your kitchen or bath, and watch the virtual remodel begin. Imagine viewing a photograph or computerized rendered view with the actual materials for the project in a life like virtual image? Preview tile patterns and layouts, cabinets, paint, appliances in kitchen and bath layouts. This would be so very cool and handy in many ways.

Designer’s would save themselves from scraped knees and sore backs lugging huge tile samples back and forth from store to showroom to job site. Manufacturers could place their virtual product catalog in front of more consumers and update it electronically with ease. Imagine the possibilities. Imagine downloading the newest stain color or door style from your cabinet manufacturer instantly instead of waiting two weeks or more for a sample. Of course actual samples are absolutely necessary before making a decision, but with the power of virtual shopping, this would be an awesome tool to help your client visualize the materials in place in their kitchen or bath remodel. Seeing it in life size views beats a small screen computer monitor any day. It is a known fact many consumers share the same problem in trying to visualize what their kitchen will look like. You can show your client a sample tile or a swatch but with software like this, you can show your client on a life size screen many more design options. The power of this software is truly awesome.   This concept is not far off from what most designers offer now with photo realistic renderings printed from their computer screens, but I believe this software with it’s life size images would take photo realistic images of a remodel to the next level in sales opportunities and ease of more product access.

I can see this as a phenomenal sales tool in a plumbing showroom too. It’s not possible for showrooms to carry samples of every single line available. But with this new software, there are so many cool things you could do with it. Envision a life size virtual kiosk, with a sales associate showing your client a custom shower system, imagine selecting the placement of the body jets, shower head, hand held in a virtual setting. Don’t like the handle style or want to see it in another color? In a flash you pick another. Move the hand held shower to a different spot? No problem. Maybe even show the water spray patterns on shower heads. I mean, think about it, there are endless possibilities with this software.

Posted in Computered Design Programs, New Products, Paint, Planning

Free Online Kitchen Visualizations

My Edited Image created online at http://showroom.labs.autodesk.com/
Matrix
EuroElectroluxKitchen

Matrix EuroElectroluxKitchen

Builders Homesite, Inc. American Kitchen with Island
My edited image of same kitchen

Rendered images courtesy of http://showroom.labs.autodesk.com.

Kitchen Design Notes was contacted by Noah Kennedy, a product manager for a new technology under development by Autodesk that would allow DIY’s and interior designers to experiment with home remodeling ideas in an entirely new way.

Autodesk, an industry leader in several key design and visualization industries wants to here from you. Autodesk has a vision that decorators want to (1) see their designs quickly, easily and photorealistically before they are real, (2) privately browse real products (furnishings, appliances, paint/wallcoverings, tiles, fabrics, etc.) from real manufacturers, and (3) be able to mix and match products together.

Noah states, “What we need now is feedback: do you and your readers like this vision and do you want to see more? What are we doing right, and what are we missing?”

“Our technology preview shows how this might work- it is free and works on all browsers, and there is no software to install. What we need now is feedback: do you and your readers like this vision and do you want to see more? What are we doing right, and what are we missing?”

Send Noah your feedback. This is a chance for designers and homeowners to give your opinion on what you want in design software.
http://showroom.labs.autodesk.com

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Posted in Computered Design Programs, New Products, Paint, Planning

Free Online Kitchen Visualizations

My Edited Image created online at http://showroom.labs.autodesk.com/
Matrix
EuroElectroluxKitchen

Matrix EuroElectroluxKitchen

Builders Homesite, Inc. American Kitchen with Island
My edited image of same kitchen

Rendered images courtesy of http://showroom.labs.autodesk.com.

Kitchen Design Notes was contacted by Noah Kennedy, a product manager for a new technology under development by Autodesk that would allow DIY’s and interior designers to experiment with home remodeling ideas in an entirely new way.

Autodesk, an industry leader in several key design and visualization industries wants to here from you. Autodesk has a vision that decorators want to (1) see their designs quickly, easily and photorealistically before they are real, (2) privately browse real products (furnishings, appliances, paint/wallcoverings, tiles, fabrics, etc.) from real manufacturers, and (3) be able to mix and match products together.

Noah states, “What we need now is feedback: do you and your readers like this vision and do you want to see more? What are we doing right, and what are we missing?”

“Our technology preview shows how this might work- it is free and works on all browsers, and there is no software to install. What we need now is feedback: do you and your readers like this vision and do you want to see more? What are we doing right, and what are we missing?”

Send Noah your feedback. This is a chance for designers and homeowners to give your opinion on what you want in design software.
http://showroom.labs.autodesk.com

###
Posted in Computered Design Programs, Paint, Planning

Paint your Kitchen with Cyber Paint

Time is money when your painter is waiting for an answer. Hearing the painter ask. “What color?” can be unsettling when all you have to base your decision is off of a small paint chip the size of a business card or a postage stamp.

My client and I were going back and forth on the idea to paint the molding dark or not.
Seeing a concept before you put the paint brush to work is a huge help to visualize the space.

For us, we needed to see french windows, doors and door casing and lots of molding for a comparison. The cabinets and cabinet crown molding is a dark cherry wood, the crown molding around the room is paint grade. Should we go with a dark stain on the exterior doors and casing or paint them light?

There are two on line tools I want to tell you about that are invaluable.
Experimenting with different colors before painting saves a lot of time and mistakes.

Quick Tips:

  1. Take the smaller paint chips from the paint store, grab a 1/2 dozen and paste them together to make one large paint chip if you don’t want to buy a small quart of tester paint.
  2. Dunn Edwards offers larger paint chips (about 4″ x 8″) through the architectural division. You can order these large paint chips on line at no charge.
  3. Have your painter (or do this yourself), apply test samples on the walls and trim. Live with it over the weekend before you commit to the color. View the color in morning, noon and night lighting.

I really like the Paint Brush tool offered at House Beautiful. It is great for quick room concepts, and saves the trip to the paint store. You can do this in the convenience of your home. There are 25 room images to select.The paint colors are from Benjamin Moore, Valspar and Sherwin Williams.

HB Paint Brush is missing the advanced options. It only allows you to pick one color trim for all the trim.
When comparing it to Dunn Edwards Palette Previewer, Dunn Edwards is more advanced and offers more flexability. Again, there is another learning curve. It is not for the impatient, but once you understand how to use it, it is really great to see your scanned photo of your actual room transformed with the paint colors you select. If you want to keep it simple, you can use the sample pictures to paint with.

Both programs allow you to print out the photo of your room with the paint numbers listed. Great idea.

Environment Friendly. I use the Dunn Edwards Computer Palette Previewer on my projects all the time and the larger paint chips so clients don’t have to invest in a quart of paint three or four times over to test multiple samples on the walls. I just wish Dunn Edwards would come out with smaller paint testers. A quart of paint is really a lot of paint when you add up three or more colors consumers may buy before making the final decision. Half empty paint cans for the recycling centers is not eco-friendly.

Posted in Bathrooms, Computered Design Programs, Faucets, New Products

Virtual Faucet Creator

“Ta da”! Exactly what I needed and I created it.”

Here’s an example of what you can do with the Virtual Faucet Creator… Start with the original BELMONT in a Weathered Copper finish, and then swap the handles for CAMARILLO in Satin Nickel for a new look.


California Faucets launched the new Virtual
Faucet Creator at http://www.calfaucets.com. This new web based tool provides anyone with the ability to design their own custom bathroom faucet or kitchen faucet by combining any spout style with any handle, in any of over 25 decorative finishes.

Interior designers, architects and homeowners alike can enjoy creating unique custom faucet designs for their home, clients and friends. You can design your custom faucet and share it via email, online or printed in Adobe PDF format. California Faucets’ uniquely flexible product line allows you to create over two million custom faucet combinations quickly and easily.

“Our new Virtual Faucet Creator has revolutionized custom faucet design. With the ability to customize instantly – you don’t have to limit your choices to rigidly mass produced faucets any longer,” says Noah Taft, California Faucets’ Vice President of Marketing.

“Just like Starbucks allows you to customize your coffee, the Virtual Faucet Creator allows you to customize your faucet by pairing any spout with any handle in any of over 25 decorative finishes,” says Jeff Silverstein, President of California Faucets. “You can experiment to your heart’s content until you find the exact faucet that satisfies your unique vision.”


Virtual Faucet Creator’s Key Features

• Thousands of Custom Faucet Configurations Possible

• Select Custom Spouts, Handles and Finishes

• Custom bathroom faucet and kitchen faucet designs may be printed, emailed or saved on-line

California Faucets Virtual Faucet Creator™: www.calfaucets.com/vfcpress

California Faucets Press Room: www.calfaucets.com/frame.asp?main=prssroom.html