In praise of the imperfect showroom
For those of you with kitchen and bath showrooms, I want to propose something radical: Don’t make it perfect.
No, let me amend that. If you’re on the upper end of the market where your clients are architects and designers for clients who rarely see their kitchens but want a showcase anyway—you’re exempt.
For the rest of us who deal with enthusiastic DIYers and clients who enjoy major input into their projects, having a showroom that is as much of an educational center as showroom not only establishes us as the go-to professionals, it cuts explanations (and arm-waving) in half.
By educational, I mean provide concrete examples of common design mistakes. Don’t install the filler next to the wall, or hinge a door the wrong way. Consider designing something that’s wrong.
I know—radical concept. Okay, I’ll add another amendment. It doesn’t have to be poor design; it can also be as simple as mixing oil-rubbed bronze fixtures at a main sink and stainless on the island prep sink. (A good way to discover a potential client’s eye for detail.)
Or install undercabinet lighting on either side of the hood with warm white on one side and cool white on the other. Sure, it’s not a pretty sight when viewing the entire display, but it is perfect for showing the difference the color of light can make.
You don’t want to riddle your showroom with errors so that an unattended client leaves with the wrong impression. In fact, you’ll probably need to oversee the traffic in your showroom more, but you’ll spend less time doing so. A display is worth a thousand words (or something like that.)
It also establishes that: a) there’s more to design than pretty and b) you know what you’re talking about. Not a bad thing when you’re trying to persuade a client to work with you.
Until next time~
This entry was posted on Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010 at 6:00 AM and is filed under Business. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.