The Kitchen and Bath show wrapped up just over a week ago in Chicago and it was a blast. If you’re not familiar with KBIS, picture this: hundreds of companies exhibiting breathtaking kitchen vignettes in hopes of wowing scores of designers who showed up hungry for new information and education. With a beautiful kitchen and a full day of SketchUp presentations, Kraftmaid’s booth was the place to be.
To be fair, one small paragraph doesn’t do the show justice. For more in-depth recaps, check out our favorites:
KraftMaid Cabinetry’s Tech Launch
Invited by KraftMaid Cabinetry to give SketchUp presentations at their booth, we were overwhelmed by the positive response to our live tutorials. We presented in 30-minute chunks from 10 AM to 5 PM every day, and switched up the topics so that folks could stay for several in a row without seeing a re-run. To top it all off, designers could get continuing education credits for each presentation. The whole initiative was a run-away success; nearly 300 designers registered for credits, and at least another 300 on top of that dropped by for part of our tutorials.
The star of the show was Google SketchUp. Designers were excited to hear about this inexpensive tool that was so easy to learn that they could use it right away for both design and sales. That’s right, SketchUp is a sales tool too. As our fellow presenter Eric Schimelpfenig is fond of saying – “SketchUp sells kitchens faster than any other tool I have used.” KraftMaid’s booth sent a clear message to this crowd: “We’re making it easier for you to design with our cabinet catalog and we’re supporting this new resource to help you be more successful.” This message is quite different from the traditional sales pitch those folks were hearing at many other booths on the floor. For more on KraftMaid’s SketchUp initiative, read about the 1000 cabinet models that they posted to the Google 3D Warehouse.
Photo-realistic rendering of a kitchen drawn in SketchUp (cabinets by KraftMaid)
KBIS also set the stage for the launch of our Designer Bootcamp. This is a new SketchUp training event geared towards Kitchen and Bath designers; the first Bootcamp will be held in Orlando from May 26th-28th. You can get more information and sign-up here, you can read our blog post about it here, and you can even see what kitchen and bath designer Paul Anater has to say about it on his blog. Paul will be a fellow presenter at our first Bootcamp, so you don’t want to miss that.
Beautiful Delta and Brizo faucets now available on the 3D Warehouse
KBIS revealed another exciting development for SketchUp users: Delta and Brizo have both launched sample collections of their faucets as SketchUp models in the Google 3D Warehouse. In creating these starter collections, we had to maintain the high aesthetic standards of these two brands, so we added real stainless steel and chrome finishes to the models. You can check out the results in the Delta collection and the Brizo collection in Google’s 3D Warehouse. The designers attending our presentations were thrilled to know that they could freely access either collection of faucets to add drama and reality to their SketchUp designs.
Where do we go from here?