home design

Contest Winners, Professional, Residential Home Design

Chace Groves wins 2nd with his 360 modern home design!

Modern home design with pool overlooking the ocean.

Chace won 2nd in our Residential Design Contest and has found his passion in home design.

“Born and raised in the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex of Texas, I’ve always had an eye for design. Supported by my father and mother and their commercial construction business, I was very fond of many local architectural firms. I had set up a few one on one interviews to discuss my future goals, the educational process, and the work atmosphere. My mind was set on architecture since I was very young.

I loved going to work with my dad to watch the schools and business buildings being built from ground break to the punch list. I would take my dad’s blueprints and turn them over to draw my own plans and ideas. In my middle school years, I would draw plans and elevations in Microsoft words with the “Shapes” feature until my grandparents purchased me my first home design software.

“While in college, I purchased Chief Architect’s Home Designer Architectural 2014. With the software, I designed my grandparent’s retirement home, which was shortly after built and managed by my grandfather, who was a retired contractor.  I did a few drafting remodel jobs after that for friends and family. After earning my Associates Degree at a nearby Jr. college, I attended Architectural school at the University of Texas at Arlington to pursue my childhood dreams. Unfortunately, after two years of the program, I decided I wasn’t happy with the school’s program and I didn’t care to stay and get my Master’s degree in Architecture. It just didn’t seem worth the time for the official stamped architectural seal after three more years and then taking all the A.R.E. exams. I couldn’t stand going over what I already knew, all the hand drawings and renderings with expensive Rapidograph pens, and finger cuts from x-acto blades.

“I then transferred to Texas State Technical College where I picked up my learning in AutoCAD and Revit, and was introduced to mechanical drafting and 3D printing technologies through Inventor and SolidWorks to add to the “Experience” section of my resume.  It took me ten years to put myself through college part-time and work a full-time job. I landed my first real design job during the last year of school, and I was the happiest I’d been in those last ten years.”


View Chace Groves winning design in Chief Architect’s 360° Panorama Viewer.


“I use all the software in my knowledge base for different projects. I sometimes use multiple software programs to finish one project. All software is different in the sense that they have different features and are better at certain tasks. The key features of Chief Architect and its products are its ease to almost effortlessly “whip up” a quick demonstration of your design, its fast rendering results to share with the client. Other’s renderings take longer to produce these results and often not in real-time. The walk-through feature is another good tool, especially for remote clients. Since I have updated to the 2018 version, I greatly appreciate the “Import 3D” feature. This allows me to incorporate my 3D designs of various things. I use the “Export” feature just as often. The “Architectural Block” feature allows me to group these components and save them to use again. I look forward to more features from Chief Architect in the near future.”


See more of Chace’s work:

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Contest Winners, Residential Home Design

Valerie Nagle Wins 1st with Her Tudor Home Design

Victorian home design with brick siding, dormers, and picket fence.

Valerie won 1st in our Residential Design Contest and has been using Home Designer software since 2012! As a repeat Design Contest winner, she has continuously shown her love for design through many styles and spaces.


Valerie Nagle“I started drawing floor plans when I was 9 years old, and I have been hooked on it ever since. I know I have much yet to learn, but Home Design is my passion, and my dream is to work for an Architect and learn more. I returned to school in 2002 and studied drafting which included Hand Drafting and AutoCAD. I earned an entry level drafting certificate in 2003 with a 3.9-grade level. About 1997 we got our first computer and it was not long before I bought my First Design software. Broderbund was my first program, then Better Homes and Gardens and lastly Chief Architect’s Home Designer software. Someday I would like to own the professional version. I live in central WV, but we will soon be moving back to my home state of PA. Besides designing homes, I enjoy reading, pets, cooking, drawing/painting, camping and more. This is a great honor for me and I thank everyone who voted for my entry for this month. I’m looking forward to next month’s contest. Congratulations to the other two winners!”

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Contest Winners, Remodel-Addition, Student

Havier Kiesow Wins 1st with His Remodeled Home Design


Havier is a 15-year-old student from Sheboygan, Wisconsin and placed 1st in our Remodel-Addition Design Contest! It’s an honor to be a part of bringing his passion to life.

“My parents bought my first Chief Architect Home Designer Suite software for Christmas in 2013.  I started learning how to use the software and my first designs were pretty simple.  I’ve since designed countless homes and buildings.  The Chief Architect software began my passion for exterior and interior home design and I always look forward to software updates.  I am planning to go to college and obtain a degree in architecture and design.” Continue reading…

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Interior Design, Stories

Designing with Wayfair in Chief Architect

Master Bedroom with Wayfair furniture and accessories to design a warm and relaxing space.

By Dani Walker

Chief Architect recently partnered with Wayfair Trade to produce a catalog of over 500 free models for our 3D Library.

This catalog includes a collection of lighting, furniture, and home décor models of real-life products from Wayfair.com. Chief Architect and Home Designer customers are able to create free, shoppable renderings for clients of any style. With more than 10,000 suppliers and eight million products, Wayfair is one of the largest online shopping destinations for all home décor and furnishings. Continue reading…

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