An Augmented Reality Kitchen Cabinet Design Studio

The Team: Katy Lewis, Sonali Tandon, Michael Nebeling

A well-known kitchen manufacturer has commissioned the lab to create an immersive showroom experience for their dealership locations. The client’s main focus is to expand on the physical experience of selecting design through product samples
to include full-size previews of style choices for the goal of providing more immersive visualizations of the installed finished product.

Our prototypes specifically attempt to aid customers during the style and finish selection process that generally happens during the first and second visit to the dealership. Instead of a customer relying solely on physical color samples to
make finish decisions, physical samples are complemented by an augmented reality display. This display allows the customer to view selections in a realistic way, providing better context and helping the customer feel more confident in their

My role in this project included paper and digital prototyping, conducting stakeholder and dealer demos, and author for a project specification document.

Below is an edited recap of our research, with findings and recommendations removed as a courtesy to our stakeholders.

Sketches & Ideation

Guided by Professor Michael Nebeling, Sonali Tanden and I were tasked with researching and designing concept prototypes for visualizing kitchen cabinets in mixed reality. Throughout the project, we created multiple prototypes for displaying
and controlling a projected cabinet display in real-time.

Projection Concepts

Tablet Interfaces for Controlling Projections


Prototype #1: Tablet Interface

  • The interface allows the user to select a style, finish, and hardware.
  • Can save favorite selections in a cart style menu.
  • Can share favorite selections via email or QR code.
  • Can compare two favorite selections at a time with a side-by-side view or upper and lower cabinets view.

Prototype #2: Mobile AR App

  • AR application for phones or tablets that allows a user to select kitchen style, finish, and hardware to then view the selections in the AR environment.
  • The app utilizes the same tablet interface assets, web-based code, and interface design of the tablet controller.
  • The user can walk around the AR image to see a 360-degree view of their selections.

Prototype #3: Full-scale Kitchen Projection

  • The projection shows customer style, finish, and hardware selections onto real full-sized cabinet doors in the Design Studio.
  • The projection system can be customized to accommodate design studios with different cabinet configurations.

Prototype #4: Mini-Kitchen Projection

  • Prototype projects customer style, finish and hardware selections from the tablet onto a small kitchen replica on the Design Studio table-top.

Demos & Interviews

To test our prototypes, we conducted three demos for stakeholders, from leadership to showroom designers and salespeople. With each demo, we collected feedback and improved our interface design and project concepts by incorporating the