Know Your Stuff
And Keep Decorative Glass in the Specs
b y S t e v e S u d e t h
n my head, the initial meeting of a
client and designer looks a lot like
a first date. Each party hopes they
can find some common ground and
that the other isn’t a total psycho.
Quickly they each learn that they “to-
tally love” the same things and are off
to plan their future together.This future
becomes the first conceptual render-
ings of a project, and one big idea gets
stacked on another until you reach a
level of unachievable absurdity.
It’s really nice when you get the proj-
ects where money isn’t a concern.Sadly,
those jobs are few and far between.
Most projects go through a lot of value
engineering,and it’s our job as glass de-
signers to help find that balance be-
tween design intent and budget.
When a custom water graphic exceeded one client’s budget, having the option
for blue laminated glass helped keep the decorative glazing element in the job.
When I’m presented with big ideas usually can find a way to keep a decora- if the gradient isn’t within budget. This
from a designer, I prepare myself for a tive product in the design by preparing way,when the client balks at the gradient
long period of editing. Project design a value option from the beginning.
price, we still get the solid color lami in-
stead of it turning into an order for stan-
dard transparent glass. It’s important to
The value engineering process can be a provide the different price levels to de-
• Big idea is created by the client and total bloodbath. Sadly, glass isn’t as im- signers so that they can take a step or two
designer; portant to most designs as flooring or back without having to cut decorative
Glass professional gives product lim- seating. That makes glass more vulnera- glass all together.
itation and rough budget numbers; ble to value engineering.When a designer When you have a good relationship
can be as quick as a couple weeks or as
long as a couple months. Each design KEEPVALUEINMIND
typically follows this common flow:
Designer presents the budget, the brings me the initial idea for a project, I with the designer and offer a product
client passes out, and then gives re- help with the high price product they that fits the design’s intent, that de-
Designer cuts everything down and starting to think of the value option.
tries to keep design intent; For example, when a designer
Glass professional gives product lim- wants a glass wall for an office re-
imagine and, in my mind, I’m already signer will fight to keep decorative glass
in the job. s
itation and rough budget numbers;
Glass gets on the spec, and;
Vultures circle and offer competitive is little chance that will ever get or-
pricing to the contract glazier. dered. We will provide samples of
There can be dozens of different the custom gradient,of course,but
model that features a transparent
custom color gradient,I know there
S t e v e S u d e t h is the
creative director for Glas-Pro
in Santa Fe Springs, Calif.
make-ups and requisite samples before I will plant some seeds such as
anything is selected.A good salesperson doing a solid color laminated glass
USGlass, Metal & Glazing | March 2016