Digitise my décor05/21/2019
Who needs swatches, scales and sectionals when one could leave it to the world of 3D rendering to visualise the ideal living space?
A peppy red, a soothing off-white or maybe a deeper brown… I can’t decide what to pick. My cooking range is a gleaming metal fixture that I’ve just placed in the centre of the kitchen counter. The drawers and cupboards are all soft touch and are designed to optimise space utilisation. If only I could just zero in on the colour scheme, my kitchen would be set — on a tablet screen. I’m using SpaceCraft, a real-time 3D rendering platform by HomeLane at their second experience store in Chennai. For the most part, working on the platform feels like I’m playing Food Street; except, here the graphics are a lot better and the space we’re designing could actually be my home.
Think Sims but real-life here. Remember the satisfaction of finishing an idyllic one-bedroom home with a fraction of your Simoleons?
The interior decoration solutions startup built SpaceCraft — the name is self-explanatory — to offer clients the ease of visualising exactly how their space would shape up and see in real-time the fittings and designs on their catalogue in their space using Virtual Reality and computer graphics. Touted to be the world’s first virtual design platform, SpaceCraft helps home-owners collaborate with HomeLane’s in-house designers on ideas when working on furnishing their homes.
Home-owners are welcome to choose to either meet the designers in person or collaborate virtually to arrive at design solutions. So no more confusing blueprints and time-consuming brainstorming sessions. All one needs to do is upload a picture of their bare shell home and begin designing everything from scratch — from flooring, wallpapers/colours, woodwork, kitchen and bath fittings to lighting solutions.
What also works for the virtual design platform is the fact that it includes an integrate pricing engine which lets home-owners get a sense of just how much the project will cost based on their choices; no unpleasant overshot budget surprises either. In short, SpaceCraft takes the guess work out of the mix — what one sees is what one gets in terms of design, timelines and budgets.
Launched just over four years ago, HomeLane started as a company wanting to make home interiors easier for customers. “We take a bare shell apartment and design everything from scratch — flooring, entertainment units, wardrobes, modular kitchens and even soft furnishings. The idea was to give customers a seamless experience when it comes to home interiors,” says Tanuj Choudhry, chief business officer, HomeLane. “The typical alternative that home-owners had until then was the unorganised sector. The expectations of home-owners today are very different; nobody has the time to take extended leave and follow up on masons and carpenters. We offer a 45-day guarantee; we help customers choose designs, manufacture the designs as per specifications and then take over their homes for a maximum of seven to 10 days for fit-outs.”
Along the line, the team behind HomeLane realised that it was not just enough to deliver on time but also provide a personalised experience. They developed SpaceCraft to provide this seamless experience to home-owners. “We’ve used cutting-edge computer graphics that simulates the way light falls on objects to create the platform. The core technology is WebGL and the language is Java Script; we came up with custom algorithms over the last two years to perfect SpaceCraft. It all started as a paper prototype,” says Vivek Seetharaman, CPO.
The startup has over 500 designers and installers on board. Their experience stores are where home-owners can go to get a feel of just what they have to offer; meetings with the designers let them choose from fittings for their homes based on price range, finishes and other factors.
“In the last four years, we have delivered about 4,000 homes and handle about eight to 10 homes per day across five cities where we have a presence,” says Tanuj.
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