Pushing the Boundaries of Style

Portrait of interior designer, Rene Rabbitt.

Taking inspiration from a broad spectrum of influences, Rene’s goal is to draw you in, make you feel welcome, and spark intrigue.

By Kerry Hansen

Based out of Oakland, California, Rene Rabbitt of Rabbitt Design has global reach with extensive experience working with people and projects all over the world. As a freelance Designer and Draftsperson, Rene offers a broad scope of services and experience, including but not limited to architectural and structural plan sets, Chief Architect training, and both residential and commercial rendering.

An Asian inspired bathroom design with large walk in shower, modern bathtub in a platform tub deck and elegant vessel sink and fixtures.
The Cavalero Conceptual Design

Rene began designing years ago when he was a General Contractor. “I once worked with a terminally-ill client whose only goal was to recreate her mother’s kitchen to a tee. After several iterations of attempting to achieve her goals through typical “spec design”, the space was still not reflecting what she remembered. It became clear that we needed to rethink our process. It was then that I discovered Chief Architect, through which I was able to help the client visualize and reflect every precise detail from memory. That kitchen still stands today and serves as an incredibly special homage to something that truly defined what design, to this day, means to me.”

…I discovered Chief Architect, through which I was able to help the client visualize and reflect every precise detail…

A contemporary kitchen design with Dark Cabinets and lots of natural light.
Chin Contemporary Kitchen

Rene has been using Chief Architect for over twelve years. According to Rene, “the differentiator with Chief lies in its simplicity and pliability specific to residential design.” You will often find Rene adding his renderings to the gallery or offering up advice on the ChiefTalk professional forum.

The differentiator with Chief lies in its simplicity and pliability specific to residential design.

Minimalist living room at sunset with vaulted ceiling, large windows, and clean design.
Sunset Living Room
Rene & Kelley's Wedding

Rene’s inspiration is drawn from a broad spectrum of mediums, individuals, and places. The first being his “designer wife, Kelley and her innate ability to tell a story through design.” His biggest Chief Architect success story happened when his wife’s favorite artist, Taylor Swift came to town.

“I needed those tickets to surprise her. I fired up Chief Architect, hunted down the blueprints of the stadium where Taylor was set to perform, and even found a CAD drawing of Taylor’s exact stage layout. What better way to choose a concert seat than to build the venue in 3D? I proposed to my wife in the morning with that concert as a surprise in the evening – she said yes, so I would consider that a pretty decent success.”

Other professional influences include the 1995 Gold Medal recipient, for a lifetime of distinguished achievement in architecture from the American Institute of Architects, “Cesar Pelli and his residential works; Ramon Zancanaro’s insane renderings; Winy Maas for his vision, his upside-down/sideways approach, and his use of color; and Bali, Indonesia with its stunning people, culture and landscapes.”

Tranquil bedroom with natural wood elements and lots of light.
Diablo Bedroom

Rene’s goal in design is to push the boundaries of the particular style he is working with. Light-play, with its opacity, sheen, and movement, has always been a focus in his work. The goal is to draw the viewer in, make them feel welcome, and spark intrigue. The most important outcome for any project is to have the client feel like they are actively designing through the designer’s hands. “When I’m done, you should feel like you designed it yourself.”

The backyard view of one of Rene's residential designs with white siding, a metal roof, and spacious deck for entertaining.
Backyard View – Residential Design by Rene Rabbitt

We’d like to send our sincere thanks to Rene for sharing his story with us about all of the ways Chief Architect has impacted his life both professionally and personally. Take a look at more of Rene’s inspiring work below.

Contact Rene Rabbitt at Rabbitt Design, ChiefTalk, or by email, renerabbitt@gmail.com.

Rene uses Thea, Photoshop, and Procreate to enhance his Chief Architect renderings.

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