Tool to help with your kitchen remodel

Thinking about remodeling your kitchen but not sure where to start? You may be tempted to just turn the project over to the experts, but a lot of people will tell you that’s the last thing you should do.

“When I was ready to redo my kitchen, the designer I was working with shot down every one of my ideas and tried to convince me that her ideas were the way to go. I was very turned off by that,” said Mike Gariepy, a do-it-yourselfer from Tucson, Ariz., who is a computer programmer by trade.

While searching online for a computer program he could use to design his dream kitchen, Gariepy couldn’t find one that would work for him. “I had all these great ideas I wanted to see in realistic 3D before I committed to them. Other home design programs made it so difficult to see my ideas. I was forced to read the manuals and understand architectural details I didn’t care about. I just wanted to whip my plan together and go out to Home Depot and do it myself,” said Gariepy.

So he designed a computer program of his own. It’s called Plan3D ( and is now available through subscription over the Internet.

After you sign up, you can immediately download and use the software. The first thing you do is decide what kind of room you want to design—a kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, etc., then type in the exact dimensions of the space you’ll be working with and access the tools available to design the space.

If you’ll be working on a kitchen remodel, for example, you have access to tools that let you draw in the windows and doors, then decide where you want the cabinets, countertops and appliances to go, and what they should look like. Once you render the drawing, the software gives you a 3D look at your design.

To learn more about the software or to sign up for access, which costs $14.95 for a one-month subscription or $2.95 per month if you sign up for a year, log on to

Courtesy of ARA Content

from the April 18-24, 2007, issue

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