Adding a Custom Material

Reference Number: KB-00138
Last Modified: July 16, 2015

The information in this article applies to:

Home Designer Professional or Home Designer Architectural or Home Designer Suite or Home Designer Interiors or Home Designer Essentials


I would like to use an actual photograph or an image of a painting in my plans.  How can I accomplish this task in Home Designer?


Placing a picture using the Home Designer products is an easy process. It first involves importing the picture, adding it to the Library as a material, and then placing it in your design by applying it to an object.  Some of the most common uses for importing your images, such as photographs, would be to place them in a picture frame, apply them to a television or computer screen, or to bring in a custom material for walls, floors, ceilings, or other items in your plan like library objects.

To add a Picture to the User Libraries Section of the Library Browser in Version 9 and Newer Programs

  1. Launch your Home Designer program and choose to Open  the plan in which you want to use your custom picture.  

  2. Once the plan is open, select View> Library Browser  to display the Library Browser window.  

  3. Scroll down to User Catalog, right click on the heading and select New> Folder.  

  4. Name the folder in your User Catalog to Materials.  

  5. Right click on the Materials folder that you created, and select New> Material to display the Define Material dialog.   

  6. In the Define Material dialog, give your Material a Name.  

  7. Then, move the radio button to Texture.  

  8. Click on the Select button to display the Select Texture File dialog, and browse to a location on your computer where you have the file that you want to use saved.  

     If you later move, or delete, the file that you are referencing for your material, you will receive a warning message in the file, and the image will no longer be displayed in your plan.

  9. Click on the file's name to select it, and click on the Open button.  

  10. Now, in the Scale section, select the option Stretch to Fit, because we only want a single image in the frame, not the same image tiled across the surface.   

  11. Click OK to apply these changes, and the new material has been added to the Library Browser in the Materials folder that you created for it in User Libraries and is ready to be applied to the frame.  

To Display the Material in a Frame

  1. Browse to Home Designer Core Catalogs> Interiors> Accessories> Mirrors & Frames.   

  2. Click on either a desk frame or a wall frame that suits your needs to select it, then move your cursor into the drawing area. The cursor will display the Furnishings (Interior) icon.  

  3. Click once to place the frame at that location in your plan.  

    • Place a desk frame on a desk or table and its height will automatically adjust so that it sits on top of the furniture.  

    • Place a wall frame against a wall and it will snap to the wall surface.  

  4. Click on the frame to select it, then click the Open Object  edit button.  

  5. In Furniture Specification dialog,  

    • Go to the Materials panel.  

    • Click on the word Photo or Image depending on the frame you choose, then click the Select Material button.  

    • In the Select Library Object dialog, browse to the My Materials library, click on your new material, then click OK to close the dialog.   

    • Click OK to close the Furniture Specification dialog.  

  6. Select 3D> Create Camera View> Full Camera  from the menu and click and drag out a camera view to see the results.