Finding Manufacturers

I am about two years out of ID school and I am lucky enough to have a fantastic job designing sets for broadcast studios worldwide. My boss is also is nice enough to give me a day off a week to pursue my own interest. Furniture.

My question is how do I find more manufacturers. I have been contacted by two manufacterers through coroflot and my website. (http://www.achelladesign.com)
I have also established a relationship with one other company by way of a reference. However, the work is thin and I want to keep finding new manufacturers. I am located in Southern California.

Does anybody have any suggestions on how to approach manufacturers with your work? Better yet, how have some of you been introduced to companies? I know the path for everyone is different, but I would love to hear some suggestions, or stories of others finding their way.

Im a ID too, just graduated though, I saw your web page, u got nice things on the objects section, may I ask you which software did you use for your models? I like furniture and Im trying to get any ideas on how to develop this furniture with a sofware and finally give them a photorealistic image, so any ideas would be great. About your manufacture stuff, well mexico is a good place, Im from mexico and is cheap to build this kind of stuff, well cheap for the US.

Thanks for the feedback. I use AutoCAD and Rhino for the modelling. If the pieces are simple geometry AutoCAD works great because you can easily take the model to working drawings. Rhino works good for organic. I render in 3D Studio Max.

If you want tips on renderings try the following:
www.splutterfish.com
www.3dtotal.com
www.3dlinks.com
(These sites have old forums with the answers to many questions already posted.)

As for manufacturing in Mexico, do you know of any imparticlular? I will search for some…

I do work on autocad, but Im trying to know better rhino, but even though is not that hard I just can get it… do u know any pages with rhino tutorials mainly focus on furniture , I have searched but cant find any, and trying to render in cinema4d, I feel kind of stock with my design because i just cant make them, I just have them on a piece of paper.

And about Mexico well I really dont know, are u trying to do a mass volume? Too bad u are pretty far away from where I live, I could hook u up, I live in Monterrey, near Laredo Texas.

Hello,everyboby

My job is help somebody find furniture in China, I have much data of furniture factory. you just give me the sample and detail about the furniture you need ,we will reply you in a few days with the quotation.

The china furniture is the cheaper than any other place and have a better quality. if have any question or want to contact with me,please e-mail to me

aver
40419989@163.com

Hello,everyboby

My job is help somebody find furniture in China, I have much data of furniture factory. you just give me the sample and detail about the furniture you need ,we will reply you in a few days with the quotation.

The china furniture is the cheaper than any other place and have a better quality. if have any question or want to contact with me,please e-mail to me

aver
40419989@163.com

You should pick up Metropolis Magazine, Dwell, Interior Design, etc. You should go to any furniture shows in your area - in NYC every spring is the ICFF, which is about as far from So Cal that you can get in the USA. Go to the Pacific Design Center in LA - the big blue and green '80’s building by Arata Isozaki. At the top of this page right now is an ad for IMM Cologne - the big furniture fair in Germany in the winter. You should be going to these places for reconnissance and to absorb yourself in furniture. Good luck!

I have been doing all the things you mention…mags, icff,design center,…Very absorbed…

My question is more about how to introduce yourself to manufacturers and pitch your ideas. For example, when you want to show a manufacturer an idea, how? Via email, hardcopy, or in person? What else should you include in your presentation? What should I watch out for?

Thanks for the feedback!

Are your work protected? Sometimes if they like your work some furniture manufacturers will change the look a bit and make it their own. You should have some kind of written agreement before showing any work but it will not guarantee you 100% protection. Ask for 2-3 references that you can call.

If you can see them in person it would be better and only leave a copy of your design when you feel they are trully interested. Being introduced to a manufacturer by a friend of the owner or one of their client/customer is always the best way. They wouldn’t want to betray their trust.