Adding and Copying Objects to the User Catalog in Home Designer

Reference Number: KB-01030
Last Modified: December 11, 2021

The information in this article applies to:

Home Designer Professional or Home Designer Architectural or HomeDesigner Suite


I have customized an object that is in one of my plans, and I would like to save it for future use. Is this possible?

Garage with multiple tools in the room


The User Catalog is a folder within Home Designer software that you can use to add objects to. This can be helpful if you use a specific library object in multiple projects or if you have created a custom object that you would like to save for use in a later plan.

In this article, we will cover the following topics:

Note: If the library browser is not currently displayed, select View> Library Browser from the menu to toggle its display on.

To add an object to the User Catalog

Many types of objects can be added to the User Catalog directly from a plan file, such as cabinets, doors, windows, appliances, fixtures, and more.

  1. Using the Select Objects  tool, select the object that you would like to add to the User Catalog, then click on the Add to Library  edit tool.

    Multiple objects can be selected and added to the User Catalog using the same process. To learn more about group selecting objects, please see the Related Articles section.

  2. Right-click on the new entry that was added to the User Catalog and select Rename to give this object a descriptive name of your choosing.

    Note: On a Mac, hold down the Control key while clicking to initiate a right-click command. More information about right-click commands on Apple input devices can be found in the following Apple resource: Right-click on Mac.

    Renaming an item in the User Catalog

  3. Notice that, for many types of objects, an Open Object  option is available that allows you to make modifications to objects added to the User Catalog.

To copy an object to the User Catalog

  1. You can either browse to find an object or use the Search feature to search by keyword. 

    In many versions of Home Designer, you can add items imported from outside sources into the Library, too. For more information on importing symbols, see the Related Articles section below. 

  2. Once the desired object is located, right-click on the item and select Copy to User Catalog from the contextual menu.

    In Home Designer 2021 and prior versions, select Copy instead, then right-click on the User Catalog folder and choose Paste

    Copying an object to the User Catalog

  3. The object will be added to the User Catalog where it can be renamed or opened to specification for further modification.

To create a new object in the User Catalog

  1. Right-click on the User Catalog and select New from the contextual menu.

  2.  Notice the options that are available, such as Backdrops, Images, Materials, and more.

    Note:  For additional information on each of these options, navigate to Help> Launch Help and search your program's documentation or search the Knowledge Base.

    Right clicking on the user catalog to make a new 3D symbol

  3. Once an option has been selected, you may either have to select an image or file from your system, or define the new object in the dialog that displays.

To add shortcuts to frequently used objects

A shortcut to an object is different than making a copy of an object. Shortcuts to objects take up much less space on your system's hard drive, however, you won't be able to make custom modifications to the object until it is placed into your plan.

  1. Find the frequently used object from the Home Designer Core, Bonus, or Manufacturer catalogs.

  2. Right-click on the object and select Copy from the contextual menu.

  3. Right-click on the User Catalog folder and select Paste Shortcut.

    Choosing Paste Shortcut in the Right Click menu on the User Catalog

To add more folders

If you will be creating different types of custom objects, you may want to keep them organized into folders. For example, you may want all of your interior fixtures together in a folder called 'Interior fixtures'.

  1. To create new folders (or sub-folders), right-click on the User Catalog and select New> Folder from the contextual menu.

    Choosing to create a new Folder after right clicking on the User Catalog

  2. Once the new folder is created, give it a descriptive name.

    Giving the new folder a different name

    Note: Now that you have created this folder, you could also create sub-folders within it by following this same process.

To move objects

Once your new folder is created, simply drag and drop an object onto your folder to move it.

  1. Another option is to right-click on your desired object and select Cut from the contextual menu.

  2. Right-click on the folder where you want to place it and choose Paste.

To locate a shortcut source

  1. In the User Catalog, right-click on an object shortcut and select Locate Shortcut Source from the contextual menu.

    Choosing Locate Shortcut Source on a Shortcut in the User Catalog

  2. The original object will be selected in the Chief Architect Core, Bonus, or Manufacturer catalogs.

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