SketchUp is a multipurpose 3D modeling tool that was designed with architectural design in mind. Although it is a versatile 3D modeling software, it can also create 2D floor plans among other things. This video tutorial discusses selecting a template and setting up the workspace to learn about SketchUp for Interior Design.
SketchUp is an all purpose 3D modeling tool which was primarily developed around architectural design. It can be used for interior design and just about anything else where a 3D model is needed to clarify a conceptual idea. I get asked a lot if SketchUp can be used for doing 2D floor plans. I say, yes it can. But there are some issues you need to work around since it is, really, a 3D program. In this example, we're going to look at how to set up SketchUp to work in a 2D environment.
We have in front of us here the opening up screen for SketchUp. Before we do anything else, we need to go ahead and select a new template. So we're going to come down here to where, if you have an arrow for template, go ahead and click on that. And then go down the list until you see one that's called for Construction Documentation Feet and Inches. And you'll notice that in here, it says this is a template designed for detailing and construction but it can be also used for training exercises. The reason that we like it is that it has a white background, which is great for doing 2D layouts.
So, we're going to go ahead and select that and then hit Start using SketchUp. When it opens up, which we should see, is a white screen. We should have basically a toolbar up here, which is their Getting Started toolbar. And we're going to go ahead and modify this to make sure that we have it setup for a 2D environment. So we're going to, first of all, come over here to View. And under View go to Toolbars and we're going to turn off Getting Started because we really don't need it. What we're looking for is the Large Tool Set.
We also want Layers on. We want to also pick up Standard and we want to pick up Styles. And we also want to pick up Views and then go ahead and hit Close. So what should happen now, is you should have the Large Tool Set over here on the side. Up above, you should have a number of other icons that come up with Layers and Views and some of the other things that we need for just working in a 2D environment. The next thing that we're going to go ahead and do is we're going to set up some window drop-down selections.
So I want you to come over here to Window, and click on that. And what we want to pick first of all is, Entity Info. And we want also in here, another one called Materials, and also one called Layers. Now each one of these ends up being its own little separate window or palette. If you notice, they kind of stack up on top of each other, which is kind of nice. And then you can move them around and put them on your desktop in a place and location where they don't necessarily have to be in the way.
So basically, they kind of roll up and roll down, as you see here. And just kind of go through that and you can see that we have them all set up and they're kind of out of the way of the drawing area. Now that we have our interface set up, the only thing that we need to do to make this work a little bit better, is to set up some layers. So, we're going to come over here, and pick the Layers palette. And you notice that we have one layer that's currently in here, which is called Layer0. Go up to the plus bar and click it a few times, we're just going to click it about four times.
And the first one that we're going to put in here is going to be walls. I click on that and we're going to put in Walls there. And the next one is going to be Doors. And we're going to pick another one here for Windows. We're going to put one in for dimensions, we're just going to call it Dims and I think we'll add in a couple more. We'll add two more. We'll have one for Floors. And the last one will be for Text. So there we go. Now we have a number of layers that are set up. One thing that you should be able aware of, you might wonder what these colors are for.
Basically the colors do not show by default. When you start drawing within SketchUp what will happen is that they have kind of a gray and blue background on faces. If you want to activate on the faces any of these colors, you can come up here to this button, and click on it and select Color by Layer. Now typically, we don't necessarily want to do that because if you look at the color palette it might be a little bit lame So, I usually try to avoid doing that and just using it by default.
So, what we have now is we've set up our work space. We have the tool bars that we need. We've gone ahead and set the layers. We're going to make sure that the layers are set to one that's called Walls. And now that we have that completed, we're going to come up here to File and do Save As. In the Save As, let's go ahead and name it Retail Space. It'll be a SketchUp file and hit Save. And we're done. So what we've done is we saved the drawing, and we now have a template here that's been set up to work in a 2D floor plan.
- Drawing 2D floor plans in SketchUp
- Selecting the right template and tools
- Creating components
- Cleaning up walls and creating door and window openings
- Using x-ray views when adding doors and windows
- Using layers to manage your views effectively
- Capturing materials to use in your design
- Applying materials to components
- Exporting your drawing as an image