NKBA’s Design Competition

Bathroom Design, Events, Interior Design, Kitchen Design, Professional, Stories

Winning Spaces from the 2018 NKBA Design Awards

This large kitchen is airy and open, galley style with a long island, warm wood ceiling, and impressive industrial hood.

by Adrean Stephenson

January’s KBIS event marked another success on the books. This year, in addition to manning our booth and hosting the annual User Breakfast, our team was delighted to contribute to one of the favorite KBIS announcements: the 2018 NKBA Design Awards! See the full spread of winners and project information in the January/February issue of NKBA Innovation + Inspiration.

We used Chief Architect’s 3D Modeling, Rendering, and Video Walkthrough Recording tools to replicate the winning designs, then recorded animations that virtually explore the spaces.

The Physically Based Rendering Technique, new to Chief Architect X10, proved to be our favorite tool for this project with its ability to mimic realistic light play on metal and shiny surfaces in the rooms. Visit our What’s New page to learn more about this, and the other new features in our latest release.

Congratulations to the NKBA Design Award winners! The skill and effort leveraged to create the spaces in these submissions is easy to appreciate. We had so much fun delving in more deeply as we studied each design for the animations; we are excited to see the next level of trends and creativity designers like you bring this coming year.

Learn more about Chief Architect’s work with the NKBA here.


National Kitchen & Bath association


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Kitchen Design, Professional, Stories, Student

Featured Student – Jennifer Allen

2017 NKBA Student Competition. Jennifer Allen Elevation for her 3rd Place design.

By Kendra Dorosh

Jennifer Allen won 3rd place for her kitchen design at the 2017 NKBA Student Design Competition. Jennifer studied Computer Aided Drafting and Design at Front Range Community College and used the Chief Architect Student License to complete her design.

Jennifer was born and raised in the town of Boulder, the heart of Colorado’s Front Range. For much of the 2000’s, she lived in Arizona where she raised three amazing stepchildren and had a daughter of her own. After moving back to Colorado in 2012 she decided to go back to school while continuing to raise her children. She graduated in December 2017 with an Associates of Applied Science in Computer Aided Drafting & Design, a Certificate in Kitchen and Bath Design, a Certificate in Fundamentals of Interior Design, and a 3.8 GPA.  She also took several architecture classes and was able to participate in a design and build class constructing a tiny house which was auctioned off with proceeds going to Habitat for Humanity.

The National Kitchen and Bath Association recently awarded her 3rd place kitchen for the 2017 Student Design Competition awarded at the 2018 Kitchen & Bath Industry Show in Orlando, Florida. Her winning design is showcased below.


“Participating in the National Kitchen and Bath Association Student Design Competition was such an amazing learning opportunity. It was the first time I worked on a space for an actual client. Working through the design problem and creating a functional space is an experience that will do nothing but help me grow my career. Being able to use the National Kitchen and Bath Auto Dimensions function within Chief Architect helped me become very proficient at dimensioning and helped get to the point of making sure my graphics standard for the competition were perfect.”



2017 NKBA Student Competition. Jennifer Allen's Layout for her 3rd Place design.


See Jennifer’s full plan here: Jennifer Allen- NKBA CD Set

“I absolutely love Chief Architect! I love how user-friendly it is and the ability to see and show clients 3D views with the drop of a camera. I have been doing freelance work since September of 2017 and being able to show clients what their space will look like sells the job every time. When I am working in Chief Architect it never feels like work!!! While at the 2018 Kitchen & Bath Industry Show I was able to take one of the courses on the capabilities of virtual reality within Chief Architect and have already started using them for jobs. I am excited to keep learning more and being able to immerse my clients in their actual spaces!

When I am working in Chief Architect it never feels like work!!!

“I would like to thank the National Kitchen and Bath Association for offering this competition as an opportunity for students and Chief Architect for creating such an amazing design software!!”


Currently, Jennifer resides in Windsor, Colorado with her daughter and is working on several freelance projects, creating 3D renderings for kitchens and baths so clients can more easily visualize their new spaces.


Connect with Jennifer:




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Bathroom Design, Interior Design, Professional, Stories

Robin Rigby Fisher – Featured NKBA Study Guide Designer

By Adrean Stephenson


When you have been designing Kitchens and Baths for 32 years and teaching the process to others for 14 more, it is next to impossible to not know your stuff. Robin Rigby Fisher is no exception, and it shows in the Large Bath she submitted for 2017’s NKBA Design Competition.

“I teach part-time at Portland Community College, an NKBA Accredited College. One of the reasons I continue to teach is to make sure that I stay at the top of my game. I want my drawings to be as meticulous as possible because I expect that from my students.  I think they are synonyms. I’m at the top of my game because my students are at the top of theirs. They are highly desirable, highly regarded. They are easy to hire. That’s what I like about teaching.

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Bathroom Design, Interior Design, Professional, Remodel-Addition, Stories

Danielle Burger – Featured NKBA Study Guide Designer

By Adrean Stephenson


It felt a little like cheating when I opened up Danielle Burger’s winning Small Bath plan and began transitioning it for our NKBA Study Guide project.


Danielle has been using Chief Architect since 2015 and made beautiful work of her bath design using the software. I simply asked to start from the plan file and then made some edits that matched her drawings to the drafting style of the other designs in our project.

View NKBA Study Guide Small Bath in Chief Architect’s 360° Panorama Viewer.


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