Serious Closet Design Software

By Bill Esler | Posted: 11/13/2012 11:57AM


click image to zoom A digital divide sometimes appears between independent closet designers, and the closet m anufacturers who serve them. Designers, apt to sketch concepts by hand, then hand off projects for manufacturers to produce. But manually created designs cannot always be built.

“Quite frankly, designers are designing something that works for the client,” says Ken Frye, closet marketing specialist for KCD Software’s Closet Designer. “They don’t really want to think about manufacturing.” But manufacturers do think about it. Manually generated closet design drawings often must be adapted by manufacturers to match standard dimensions.

“KCD saw in the closets industry that while designs looked good, manufacturers at the production end were having to redesign it, opening the door for mistakes.,” says Frye. “And manufacturers are sticklers for the detail.” This, he says, is the rationale for using design software in the first place.

“Behind the scenes, our software translates designs into ‘allowed sizes,’” Frye explains. As closets are sketched in the software, it automatically adapts the section and component measures to “known” or “allowed” sizes, making sure the shelves and drawers align, for example. “Designers don’t have to know it’s there,” Frye says. Tolerances are within a 1/16th or 1/32nd inch. “It is negligible and never really affects the design.”

“They can focus on simplifying their client’s life,” says Frye. “But when they give the design over to the manufacturer it will be the size manufacturers are looking for.” Closet firms who license KCD Closet Designer (at $1,295) often buy a secondary license ($495) for friendly designers, who are likely to use it to create more production orders.


About the Author

Bill Esler, Woodworking Network, WMS

Bill Esler

Bill Esler, Editorial Director, Woodworking Network Bill is responsible for overall content at Woodworking Network magazine, and related newsletters. Bill also manages event programs for Woodworking Network Live conferences at the Woodworking Machinery & Supplies Expo in Toronto and Cabinets & Closets Expo. He developing audience engagement programs using custom digital printing, live lead-generating events, custom websites, and custom digital and print content. Read Bill Esler's woodworking blogs. He can be reached at or follow him on Google+.

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