How is the furniture design and selection process evolving?
It used to be the case that where new furniture was to be incorporated into an office re-design and re-fit, a visit to several showrooms or several hours of browsing through catalogues would be required. The next evolution of furniture selection came as more and more manufacturers moved online to showcase their ever-changing ranges. And now it’s possible to go one step further by choosing furniture and seeing it in 3D within the actual design, enabling you to have a full walk-through of the actual space. This progression is being embraced not only by furniture manufacturers but also by lighting manufacturers and sanitaryware suppliers, among others.
This approach allows office designers to configure, specify and visualise many of the products that they plan to include, thus helping clients both to get a feel for the products themselves and to explore colour schemes and themes. An additional advantage of this development is that the system can create specification documents and in some cases even costings to assist with decision-making. And some – including Senator – can provide a link to an AR model which can be placed within the office space when viewed using a mobile phone.
Some common configurators include:
For Matt Brookes, Interior Designer at The Workspace Consultants, this advancement in technology has been very welcome. ‘It’s safe to assume that all the leading furniture manufacturers have developed 3D models of their furniture and lighting, and that in turn has aided our design process because we can then include those models in our design concepts to accurately show the client what they can expect,’ comments Matt. ‘Increasingly we’re working with render companies such as digital3dworks in order to show real furniture in our concepts.
Our render for NG Bailey
The finished NG Bailey space - view the full NG Bailey project here
'The Frovi Bamboo configurator is excellent, as it creates exact 3D models as well as accurate costings, and it’s one we used on our recent project for CEDR as shown below.
Our planned CEDR project showing the bamboo shelving
The bamboo shelving in situ - view the full CEDR project here
‘The Configurators are also brilliant for lighting as they’re able to show the lighting value and the direction of a specific light and how it will actually illuminate the room. The XAL configurator is one of the best on the market as it provides a lighting render in real time as you adjust the type of lights you have in mind.
‘Ultimately, this removes all the guesswork from our design concepts as we’re no longer asking the client to look at a catalogue or online image and visualise how that item might look in the space we’re creating.’
The Workspace Consultants specialise in office design and project management in Cambridge, London and Manchester, so why not call us on 01223 656111 or complete our enquiry form to arrange a consultation?