Creating a Custom Enclosure for a Drop-in Bathtub

The information in this article applies to:


I’d like to use a specific undermount or drop-in bathtub in my plan, but it doesn’t appear to have an enclosure. How can I create a custom enclosure for this object?

Bathtub with an enclosure


Many objects are ready to use as stand-alone objects, however, some objects like drop-in bathtubs are meant to be enclosed. A custom enclosure, or surround, can be created in Home Designer by using the Base Cabinet tool.

In this article, we will be using a bathtub object from the Kohler® Manufacturer catalog, which can be downloaded for free from the Chief Architect 3D Library,

To create a bathtub enclosure

  1. Access the Library Browser , locate a drop-in bathtub that you would like to use in your plan, select it, and place it in your plan.

    In this example, the K-1946 Archer 5′ Bath symbol from the Kohler® Manufacturer catalog is used.

  2. Using the Select Objects tool, select the bathtub, and click the Open Object edit button.
  3. On the General panel of the Fixture Specification dialog that displays:

    General panel of the Fixture Specification dialog

    • Make a note of the symbol’s Width, Height, and Depth. This is also a good time to change these values if you wish.
    • Make any other desired changes, such as the material of the tub by accessing the Materials panel.
    • Click OK to confirm the changes and close the dialog.
  4. Next, navigate to Build> Cabinet> Base Cabinet from the menu, then click to place a single base cabinet in the plan.
  5. Using the Select Objects tool, click on the cabinet to select it and select the Open Object edit button.
  6. On the General panel of the Base Cabinet Specification dialog:

    General panel of the Base Cabinet Specification dialog

    • Specify the cabinet’s Width, Height, and Depth, and Floor to Top/Bottom values.

      The width and height should be close to the width and height of the tub symbol, while the depth will serve as the depth of the surround. In this example, the Width is set to 60″, the Height is set to 17 1/2″, the Depth is set to 6″, and the Floor to Bottom is set to 0″.

    • Specify the Countertop Thickness, along with the Overhang.

      In this example, the Thickness is set to 1 1/2″ and the Overhang is 1/8″.

      Home Designer Pro also has the ability to change the Corner Treatment and Corner Width of the countertop. For example, corners can be Clipped or Rounded, and the Width value can be changed.

    • If the bathtub and surround will be positioned against a wall, you may want to define the Backsplash Height, Thickness, and other options as well.
  7. On the Front panel:
  8. With the cabinet selected, use its Move  edit handle to position it alongside the bathtub symbol.

    Moving the custom cabinet up against the tub

  9. With the cabinet still selected, make three more copies of it that you can use to form the other sides of the tub enclosure:
    • Click the Copy/Paste edit button;
    • Click the Sticky Mode secondary edit button;
    • Click three times in an empty
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Designing a Custom Drop-in Tub Enclosure

The information in this article applies to:


I need to create a tub deck surround for a drop-in tub. How can I achieve this?

Drop-in tub located in bathroom


In Chief Architect, we have a number of Drop-In Tub symbols that can be placed in plans, and a number of tools to create a surround. In this article, we will create an enclosure using Half-Walls and a Custom Countertop.

To place a drop-in tub

  1. Navigate to View> Library Browser  if the library isn’t already open, and browse to Chief Architect Core Catalogs> Architectural> Fixtures> Bathtubs> Drop-In Tubs.
  2. Select one of the drop-in tubs, then click once in the plan to place the selected tub.

    Plan view of a tub placed in the room

  3. Keeping the tub selected, click the Open Object edit tool, and in the Fixture Specification dialog that displays, take note of the size and elevation of the tub, then click OK.

    This would also be a good time to make changes to the size and elevation of the tub if different values are desired.

    General panel of the Fixture Specification dialog

    In this example, we are using the Standard Tub from the library and will be using the default values.

To create the enclosure

  1. Navigate to Build> Wall> Straight Half-Wall  from the menu, then draw an interior rectangle that will serve as the supportive enclosure for the tub.

    Half walls drawn surrounding the tub

    Note: If you have difficulty drawing half-walls directly beside other walls, try drawing them in a separate area of the room, away from other walls, then move them into place using their Move edit handles.

    Moving walls using the move edit handle

  2. Using the Select Objects tool, select one of the half-walls, click the Open Object edit tool, and in the Railing Specification dialog that displays:

    Newels/Balusters panel where the height of the half-wall can be set

  3. Perform this same procedure for the three remaining walls.
  4. We are now ready to construct the top surface of the enclosure. Select Build> Cabinet> Custom Countertop from the menu, then click and drag to create a rectangle that encompasses the tub and the four half-walls.

    Creating a custom countertop

  5. Once the countertop is placed, select it using the Select Objects tool, click the Open Object edit tool, and in the Custom Countertop Specification dialog that displays:

    Set the thickness, height, and position of the countertop

    • On the General panel, uncheck Set Thickness From Cabinet and specify a desired Thickness.

      In this example, a Thickness of 1 1/2″ is set.

    • Uncheck Set Height From Cabinet and specify the Finished Floor to Top/Bottom value.

      In this example, the Elevation Reference is set to From Finished Floor, and the Finished Floor to Bottom value is set to 15 3/4″.

    • Change the material of the countertop on the Materials panel.
    • Click OK to confirm the changes and close the dialog.
  6. Navigate to Build> Cabinet> Custom Counter Hole  and create a hole that spans the width and depth of the tub.

    Creating a custom counter hole

  7. Lastly, add a faucet, along with any additional fixtures and accessories from the Library Browser , then take a Camera view to see the results.

    Camera view of a custom tub enclosure

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Creating a Custom Glass Shower

Several already existing shower and bathtub combinations, as well as enclosures, can be located in the Library Browser. However, if you’re designing a glass shower that requires custom modifications, it’s recommended to utilize the Glass Wall and Glass Shower Door tools instead.

To create a glass shower

  1. Open a plan that you’d like to design a custom glass shower within.
  2. Placing focus on the bathroom area, navigate to Build> Wall> Straight Glass Wall or Straight Glass Pony Wall  from the menu, then left-click and drag to create as many shower walls as you’d like.

    Glass shower walls drawin in a floor plan
  3. Make any additional modifications to the newly created walls, such as their position in the plan, or the materials that are applied.

    To learn more about modifying walls and their various properties, please see the Related Articles section below.

  4. With the shower area established, a door can now be placed. Select Build> Door> Shower Door from the menu, then click within a shower wall to place a glass shower door.
  5. Using the Select Objects tool, click on the door to select, then click on the Open Object edit tool.
  6. In the Door Specification dialog that displays, make any desired adjustments, then click OK.

    General panel of the Interior Door Specification dialog

    A shower wall niche can also be created inside a custom shower by navigating to Build> Window> Wall Niche from the menu, and clicking along a wall to create the cavity.

Fixtures can now be added to complete the space. Navigate to Chief Architect Core Catalogs> Architectural> Fixtures within the Library Browser  to find faucets, shower pans, drains, and other fixtures to place into your custom shower. Additional shower fixtures and hardware can be found in the various manufacturer and bonus libraries located in the 3D Library.

Additional tools, such as the Custom Backsplash  and Wall Material Region  tools can be used to apply decorative tile or other materials to certain areas of the shower, while the Soffit  and Polyline Solid  tools can be used to create objects like benches or shower curbs.

Here are just a few of the different shower configurations that have been designed in Chief Architect using the tools and techniques mentioned in this article. These examples, along with several others, can be accessed at anytime from the Chief Architect Samples Gallery.

Bachelor View Owner’s Suite Remodel

Bachelor view bath remodel with a custom glass shower

Stone Creek Primary Bath Remodel

Stone creek primary bath


Breckinridge primary bath

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Greek revival mansion has spiral staircase, formal kitchen, catering kitchen, custom floor

This Greek revival home is a replica of the antebellum D’Evereux Hall mansion in Natchez, Mississippi. The mansion features a spiral staircase, two kitchens, and custom cypress flooring throughout the 7,450 square foot home.

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Ford’s long wheelbase Transit Custom Nugget camper van with a bathroom

  • Ford has unveiled the long wheelbase version of its Nugget camper van.
  • The new larger van now includes a bathroom and an additional sink, along with the existing two beds, leisure seating area, and kitchen space found in its original iteration.
  • The Ford Transit Custom-based camper van will be available for order in the UK in November, although its price has not been announced yet.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Ford has unveiled the long wheelbase version of its Transit Custom-based Nugget camper van, which now features a bathroom in the rear and an additional sink.

The long wheelbase, or “LWB” for short, Nugget’s arrival to the market accompanies a family of three: the original Nugget, and the concept Big Nugget.

Like the first Nugget, Ford partnered with Westfalia to create the new long wheelbase iteration, which now has a full camper interior all inside of a 2.0-liter EcoBlue diesel engine-powered van. And unlike its predecessors, the LWB Nugget uses an L-shaped layout to fit the bathroom, kitchen, and living space. 

Separate from the Nugget series, the Ford Transit has become a popular camper van base for both do-it-yourself van builders and van conversion companies like Vanlife Customs. Recently, travel startup Cabana took the Ford Transit a step beyond this by deploying a fleet of converted 2019 Transit-based camper vans to serve as its mobile hotel unit.

Besides the popularity of the Transit base, the new extended length Nugget comes at a time in which camper van sales have stayed resilient, and in some cases, skyrocketed, amid the pandemic.

Keep scrolling to see how the famed automaker has turned its own van into a multi-space tiny home on wheels:

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Custom Auto Interior – 3 Reasons to Consider Seat Re-Covering

Having your car’s seats re-done/re-covered is a fairly large custom auto interior project, but even so, it is generally reasonably price and well worth doing. There are three primary reasons for having your car’s seats re-done/re-covered, and we’ll cover them in brief, below:

1 – If you want to update your vehicle and give it a fresh look, the seats are generally the biggest, most eye catching part of the interior of the car. If you can only afford to have one thing done, this will make the biggest visible difference for the money spent.

2 – If you’re restoring a classic car and want to return it to original “off the showroom floor” condition, you’ll almost certainly need the services of a specialist. That’s a big, intricately detailed job, and not one that many people can do on the fly. Again, the seats are a major part of the restoration of the interior, and as such, should be a priority.

3 – If you’re taking advantage of existing damage to effect a change. Maybe you’re not looking to drastically alter the look of your car’s interior, or maybe you don’t want to change a thing, but if you’ve got damage and want to fix the vehicle up and extend its useful life, then re-padding and re-covering the seats will certainly help you accomplish your goal!

Remember that re-padding and re-covering your seats is NOT the same thing as having seat covers installed. Seat covers merely go over what’s already there. What we’re talking about is having the old upholstery removed and replaced/updated with new. Totally different thing!

This is but one of a great number of services that a good custom auto interior specialist can perform for you.…

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Custom Dog House

Have you faced the problem of finding exactly the right dog house? Although multitudes of designs flood the market now, selecting a dog house can be tough, especially when you have a particular design in mind or when you are searching for some truly unique dog house. It's here custom dog houses come in; They can suit your exact needs and make your imagination turn into reality.

Custom-built dog houses are those which are built according to the instructions or plans of the buyer. A number of custom-building dog house companies exist in the market. Some of them comprise of the following – seeFido, Lilliput Play Homes, La Petite Maison, Ash Custom, Bavarian leisure Cottages, and Paw Homes.

Research shows that although buyers sometimes prefer their self-designed dog houses, they often complain of high prices involved. seeFido steps in here to make your dog houses convenient both in terms of quality and prices. Providing beautifully designed custom-made dog houses of cedar, it helps to fit in all the sizes and specifications provided by the buyer.

Paw Homes and Bavarian Leisure Cottages, just like seeFido, also built dog houses of cedar. The former company has a range of uniquely designed dog houses as well, bearing names like 'cedar hut', 'constellation', and much more. Bavarian Leisure Cottages is based in Canada and provides custom-built dog houses too. Making its houses purely of wood products, it produces dog houses of the highest standards and qualities.

For those in quest and ready to pay in something extra to building a luxury custom dog house for their pets, companies like Lilliput Play Homes and La Petite Maison exist.

Unbelievably designed and constructed, the dog houses made by La Petite Maison are simply too beautiful to be true. It builds houses according to the whims and fancies of the buyer, or houses that represent a replica of the buyers' house, and even sometimes create something completely new. Fabulously made, these custom-built dog houses can be made on the site of the buyer or made at the company and then later shipped to the buyer, depending upon the size and other factors.

Lilliput Play Homes provide luxury dog ​​houses too. Their dog houses are easy to clean, capable of being assembled easy, and even constructed of red cedar, which does not rot.

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Custom Kitchen Cabinets

If your budget is not a consideration, then consider custom-made kitchen cabinets as a viable option to remodel your kitchen and give it a new lease on life. This is not to say that custom-made cabinets are unaffordable, it just means that if you decide to opt for custom cabinets, the sky is the limit.

Before deciding on the cabinetry, you should have clear-cut idea of ​​what you are looking for. This means you need to decide upon the style and color of the cabinets. Study the market and you'll find that cabinetmakers will be able to match any color of your choice or an existing cupboard in your kitchen if you so desire. Then you need to check out your preferences in term of wood or steel.

Also, depending upon whether your home is a modern apartment or a centuries old house, you can think in terms of traditional design or a contemporary look. Traditional designs will involve add on frills and moldings. Contemporary designs, on the other hand, focus on an uncluttered, simple, ready-to-use look.

Another important factor that should call for your attention is the amount of time you'll spend in the kitchen. This factor will determine how much of space you wish to allocate to you custom kitchen cabinets.

You can use kitchen cabinets to create more counter space, store food products, hide appliances, and display silverware. Depending on the space you allocate for the cabinets, you can decide on cabinets with overtop storage space for dishes or pull out drawers underneath the stove for pots and pans.

Traditionally, kitchen cabinets were made of solid wood varying from the sturdy oak to the wine red cherry or the elegant maple. Trends have changed in kitchen cabinetry and now you have newer and trendier options including freestanding or mobile cabinets made from glass or durable plastics.

There are a wide array of knobs and latches to add aesthetic value to the cabinets. Again, you can pick between the contemporary or vintage designs. Also, if you have kids or grand kids in the house, you can consider knobs with monkey faces or rocking horse designs. Knobs designed as teddy bears continue to hold the fascination of children.

You can also consider add-on accessories such as lights. Again, the designs vary from the spotlight halogen lamps to the fluorescent connections.

So, if you can loosen your purse stings, let your imagination go wild and choose custom made kitchen cabinetry giving you the dream finished coupled with practical utility.

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