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Dispensary Design Has Gone Virtual

From the abnormality of the pandemic emerged a new normal in dispensary design, virtual design services.

To be fair, Sungrown Studio has always been virtual. We just got really popular during the pandemic, when most firms had to postpone meetings, learn how to navigate zoom and many other work arounds to keep their design business afloat. We’ve been doing it this way since we began, way back in 2018.

When you hear the words virtual, you might be thinking…how can anyone create a full dispensary design from a far? Is it possible to pick paint colors and “feel” the space without being in the space?

Well, keep reading because we are about to dish our secrets on how we have made this a seamless and successful process and why virtual design is actually a win-win for everyone.

How It All Started

Our designers came from the residential design background, with over 20 years experience of lengthy in- person meetings, sitting in traffic, schlepping samples to clients homes and wasting hour after hour listening to subcontractors make small talk. We’ve done that. We knew even back then that there is a better, cleaner way to create great design. Sungrown Studio was born out of the concept that exceptional design doesn’t need to be limited to which designer is living in your zip code. We can go anywhere without going anywhere.

Even as Sungrown was cooking up how our internal design process would actually work, our favorite vendors already had similar plans in motion. Nearly all of our trusted partners were already going to online catalogs, searchable product databases and simplifying trade only accounts. Sales reps were moving away from in person road shows and starting to email presentations. Iphones, Pinterest, Google Teams, Morpholio, Zoom, Loom. All of it rolled together gives us an exceptionally strong platform to not only create, but share.

Our Process In 7 Easy Steps

The first step to your project is a Kickoff Call. Virtual design starts exactly the same way as a traditional in-person project, listening. Either an old fashioned phone call or a zoom, we dig into every detail of your project in great depth. Because Sungrown is a cannabis dispensary specific design firm, we know exactly what to ask. We listen to not only what you want to achieve but what hasn’t been working for you so far. Why you got into this business and what your long term goals are. Listening to you and your team drives the dispensary concept into a reality. 99% of what I design comes straight from our Kickoff calls. Listening is key.

We determine your style by having you take the Style Quiz.. This narrows down your look and gives us a general direction. We touch on who your customer is and if you had a dream celebrity endorser, who would that be? Are you flying high like Snoop or a little more subtle like Martha? This all plays into who you are as a brand, which is what we are learning about you in these early phases of design.

We create a mood board to give you a more specific feel of your space, and more importantly get your feedback on your likes and dislikes. All emailed directly to your inbox.

Next we start your actual plan. I take measurements you’ve already emailed me or AutoCad plans from your builder or architect and begin putting them into plan. Walkthrough videos of your space are great and also basic details such as “The entry door faces north.” This gives me a sense of natural light, which also plays into paint colors and accent lighting. I will ask you questions about ceiling heights and treatments. My team and I draft your space and begin adding the main elements we talked about on your Kickoff Call. WOW moments like a living wall or a selfie spot, employee areas, restrooms, storage and offices. All of these details go into your plans and more.

Have you ever been railroaded by a designer? Did you feel like you didn’t really have a say or that the design took a turn you really weren’t happy with?

The key to designing virtually is having an open line of communication throughout the process. We make sure you approve each phase of the design before we move on to the next. From mood board to rendering, we want your feedback and each step of the way.

After your mood board and floor plan are ready to go, we begin sourcing. (Sourcing is basically picking out every single item that will go into your retail dispensary) This is when I tap my huge bank of resources that we have curated over the years. The best trades, lighting, fixtures, finishes. Cannabis specialty items that are hard to find. We have them all. Since we don’t order items for you, we create a shopping list for your project. Each item is listed with links, specifications and all the info you need to place your orders. Our clients love this tool because they can customize it to include shipping times, delivery dates and budget. It can easily be shared with contractors and team members.

Finally we create photo realistic renderings of your completed dispensary. This is a great way to see everything from your shopping list pulled together, in your space. Need to impress investors? Our renderings are all super high resolution, so feel free to use them for your portfolio, posters, whatever you need. This is also a great way to show your contractors exactly the level of work you expect. Our renderings go way beyond the basic design. They also show merchandising and artistic finishing touches like art, accessories and dispensary tech.

So there you have it. Our virtual dispensary design process summed up in 7 easy steps. Our clients are always amazed by the outcome. But don’t just take our word for it, here’s a recent space we transformed, virtually!

Ready to transform your dispensary design? Click to Schedule a call with our design team to discuss the floor plan that is right for your business.