A major milestone and the starting line!
In February 2015 we set out with an ambitious dream, and today we are thrilled to announce that Modsy has officially emerged from beta to transform the way consumers shop for and design their homes.
We have worked tirelessly, constantly testing with customers, pushing the limits on the product capabilities, expanding our incredible team, and continuously looking for ways to improve. And this release is just the beginning. We have several amazing things in the pipeline and cannot wait to continue this momentum.
Modsy is the solution we’ve all been searching for when it comes to designing our homes. It is not enough to put furniture online or make interior design more affordable – it’s time for a true technology-based transformation!
At each step we’ve seen a little glimmer of the magic that Modsy can create. We’ve seen the “wow” on someone’s face when she realizes that the image she sees is not a photograph. We’ve heard pure joy from a customer discovering a product he absolutely loves. And most importantly, we’ve seen customer after customer transform their homes into something they truly love.
Modsy is technology meets design at its very best!
- First and foremost, we are building a product that works for a real person. No specialized hardware, software, or goggles required.
- We are building a product that empowers you to lead the design of your own home.
- We are building a product that relies on technology to do the heavy lifting. Reconstructing 3D room models, curating and suggesting products, creating optimal layouts, and more.
- We are building a product that brings in the human touch where the impact is greatest. Providing creative inspiration and assisting in your design process only as necessary and as requested.
To reach this significant milestone it has taken the tremendous dedication of everyone here on the Modsy team and the support of our friends, family, investors, advisors, and customers. A product launch is more than just a moment in time – it is the culmination of countless hours and the determination to bring the impossible to life. Today we are taking a moment to celebrate and thank everyone who has been involved. And to recognize that we have accomplished so much, yet our journey has only just begun!
Imagine a world where you could have the utmost confidence that the piece of furniture you’ve been eying will actually look great in your own space. You know it will fit, you know how it should be laid out, and you know how it looks with other pieces already in your room. The best part? You don’t actually have to buy it to know all of this!
Today at Modsy we’re making that world possible. We rolled out a big new feature in our beta that we’re excited to tell you more about. (Drumroll please….)
As a Modsy member, you now have the ability to automagically(!) replace products in your existing room designs with alternatives of your choosing.
Why is this exciting for you? A few reasons:
You choose what you like.
Not totally in love with the sofa, or the rug, or the artwork we put in your initial designs? No problem. Scroll through our alternative products and select the one you love.
See it in your own space.
No need to rely on just your imagination anymore. Once you’ve selected alternative products for your design, we will develop additional photo-realistic images that allow you to literally “see it to believe it.”
Don’t stop until you’ve found “the one.”
Why settle? Try on new furniture until you’ve found that perfect piece you’ve been looking for.
How it works:
1. If you already have a Modsy Studio*, log in to it. (If you don’t, sign up asap!) 🙂
2. Access the Replace feature through the “Replace” button on the main toolbar…
or on any of the Product Detail Pages:
3. Select the product you’d like to swap out and then select the alternative product you’d like to take its place.
4. Continue selecting existing products and alternative products until you’ve made all the replacements you’d like to see. **Note – you can replace 1 to all of the products in the design if you’d like!
5. Click “Review” to see the list of products in the new design.
6. After you click “Submit Redesign”, you’ll see a ‘pending’ design in your design bar:
That’s it! In 2 business days you’ll receive your new designs with the products of your choosing incorporated!
What’s coming next:
Right now, after you click “submit”, it takes about 2 business days to receive your new design. While we know this isn’t ideal, we are still unbelievably excited about it – this is some incredibly cutting edge technology we’re building over here!
The reasons behind a 2-day lag are quite technical, but the gist of it lies in the fact that “rendering” these photo-realistic images takes a bit of computational time. That being said, we’re hard at work improving the back-end technology to make this replace feature as close to real-time as possible. This is just our first step to get there!
Interested in trying out this new feature for yourself? If you’re a member, simply log in to your existing Modsy Studio and get started!* And if you’re not yet a member, head to modsy.com and sign up to start redesigning your own space today!
*If you have an older version of the Modsy Studio, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll update your old Lookbook so you can try out this new feature asap!
At Modsy, we heart Target. With exclusive collections from big design-world names like Nate Berkus and Marimekko, Target’s massive home collection is our style team’s go-to source for affordable, on-trend decor.
Sooooo… we’re super excited to announce the Modsy x Target Collection, curated for five of our top styles. We’ve put together some vignettes to show off just how amazing these collections look (and don’t get us started on the prices!).
We are also partnering with Target to offer their first-ever trade discount exclusively for Modsy members. For a limited time, get 10% off all Target Home purchases when you buy through Modsy.
And the news gets better – our trade discount can be used with other promotions. Shop now and take advantage of Target Home’s current promotion running through the month of April (up to 25% off total).
Love the look (and price!) of this collection? Want to see it in your space?
Not a Modsy member? Change that now!
Some favorites from the Modsy x Target Home Collection
Equestrian Side Table Brown
Offer valid through 5/31/16. Available for Modsy members only. All purchases must be made via Modsy to receive trade discount.
If you’re interested in – or in the process of – starting a business, get your note-taking tools ready and take a listen to our very own Founder and CEO, Shanna Tellerman in conversation with Lorraine Sanders on the Spirit of 608 podcast. There are some surprising gold nuggets of truth and insight here you don’t want to miss.
A unique, circular path to Modsy
Modsy isn’t Shanna’s first rodeo. In fact, it’s the result of a 360 degree adventure she’s taken from the company she started right out of college (Sim Ops Studios), to working on the corporate side (at Autodesk, which bought Sim Ops), to learning what goes on in the mind of venture capitalists (as an investor at Google Ventures), to starting another company, Modsy, with a wholly new perspective.
It’s about mindset
Shanna attributes the willingness and confidence to take on the challenges of starting a company partly to personality type and an unflinching optimism and partly to growing up in a family that took career risks. It was the norm for her to watch her parents work through hard business problems, and it instilled a confidence and resilience that has proven great asset.
“It’s really about continuously putting one foot in front of the other that makes a successful company. That’s hard to know if you’re diving into it for the first time. You’re probably second guessing yourself wondering ‘Is it supposed to be this hard?'”
Lessons from the VC side of the table
Stepping out of her comfort zone to work as an investor at Google Ventures gave Shanna some incredibly important insights into the funding game, and she’s eager to share what she’s learned:
VC funding is not right for every company. In fact, it doesn’t make sense for most companies. There’s a tiny bucket of companies, with a very specific profile, that will benefit from venture backing (Is your pencil ready? Listen to the podcast for the profile specifics).
Clear, concise communication is key. Even if your company fits the profile, you have to have everything pitch-perfect to become even a glimmer in the eye of a VC investor. Is the market opportunity timely? Is it over saturated or so new no one’s heard of it? Do you have a prototype or proof point to help the investor understand what you’re doing and how it will work?
Your team is as important as your product. Why you? Why this team? What’s your special sauce?
Make sure you’re up for the pain. Though the media makes the venture-backed startup world seem sexy and fun, the founders and teams building those companies are often under tremendous pressure, including outsized expectations for both speed and scale. While raising capital is often a tremendous area of stress and focus for any new business, Shanna strongly recommends that companies truly evaluate whether their business can, and should, stand that pressure. The alternative – not raising capital – and instead funding your business through customer revenue and a more steady rate of growth may not be such a bad thing.
Learn the art of negotiation. Shanna’s Lesson #1: “If you can understand the driver of the person that you’re negotiating against, what’s important to them, there’s often times a deal that is common ground, that makes everybody happy, that you can reach fairly quickly.”
Getting to Modsy
While her instincts, background and work experience taught Shanna to recognize good ideas and make them happen, it was an event in her personal life that presented the opportunity. Actually, it wasn’t an event, it was a sofa.
“I’ve never cried over anything I’ve ever bought in my life except for furniture. And I have now, multiple times, sat on the floor crying because things really didn’t work!”
While pondering why in the world she would be crying over a sofa, she zeroed in on the idea for her next company. People are emotional about our their homes. It’s is supposed to be a place that feels beautiful and comforting, not frustrating and stressful, and she knew her miserable experience was not uncommon. “I wanted to take a lot of the pain out of the way, and visualization – seeing – is one of the best steps toward that,” Shanna says.
As she barely put a toe in the water of talking about her idea, she was routinely interrupted by people desperate to share their home design nightmares and she thought, “there is something HUGE under the surface and people are very frustrated and they are looking for outlets to talk about it and looking for a solution to solve it.'”
Flash forward to today, and Modsy – a company that gives consumers confidence to purchase home decor by first seeing it within the context of their own homes – is a fact. All the roads Shanna has taken, all the inspirational people she’s met, successes and failures she’s had and skills she’s learned have led her to this point. She says, “This is the company that I was always supposed to start.”
Take a listen. Shanna and Lorraine’s conversation is fun and inspiring. You’ll understand that while what we’re doing at Modsy is a team effort, Shanna’s essence and energy is our compass and fuel, and the heart of our company.
It’s hard to believe it’s been only eleven short months since the start of Modsy. Our mission from day one has been improve the way consumers design and shop for their homes by allowing them to see furniture and accessories in the context of their very own homes. 2015 was an exceptional year at Modsy and it’s hard to believe how fast it all came together. In the blink of an eye we’ve built the company, the team, the product and a fast growing customer base! We have so much to be thankful for and so many people to thank for contributing to this success.
A MAJOR MILESTONE
Today, we are proud to announce the closing of $8M in Series A funding, led by Norwest Venture Partners. We feel so incredibly lucky to have arrived at this major milestone for the company and even more so, we feel privileged to have the opportunity to work with the talented team at Norwest. We truly value having a partner that is so aligned with our vision for the future of Modsy and that has been such a fantastic supporter since day one.
We’ve reached this milestone because of the unwavering support and encouragement of investors, partners, friends and believers of every kind. It has allowed us to hire the incredibly talented and dedicated team of people and to continue on our mission to bring the vision for Modsy to life.
WHAT COMES NEXT
This financing will help us accelerate the company’s trajectory in several key ways.
Recruiting – we will continue to recruit and hire the most talented graphics engineers, 3D artists and designers from across the industry.
Product – we are laser focused on making the most incredible customer experience possible and transforming the way people shop for the home.
Partners – we will be expanding our partnerships in several key areas include retailer partners, real estate and media/content.
A HUGE THANK YOU
We are so appreciative of the people that have been a part of our journey from the very beginning. Thank you so much to our amazing investors who include Norwest Venture Partners, Metamorphic Ventures, Birchmere Ventures, Susa Ventures, Ame Cloud Ventures, Google Ventures, BBG Ventures, Astia Angels, Ammunition, and individual angels including Susan Feldman (Co-founder of One Kings Lane), Eoin Harrington (SVP, Restoration Hardware), Heather Reisman (CEO of Indigo), Timur Yumusaklar (CEO of Schumacher), Joanne Wilson, Cindy Padnos, Nancy Pfund, Pascal Levensohn, and several more amazing individuals.
CHECK IT OUT
We invite you to join the Modsy insider community here, we are in a private beta and will continue to invite customers in on a rolling basis. Here is a fun video preview of Modsy!
There is a revolution happening in the industry of home inspiration and decor. New tools and services are turning an old process on its ear, and while it didn’t all start in 2015, it sure seemed to reach a new momentum this year.
While we have been busy at work solving a tremendous obstacle around home visualization, we wanted to share some of the other categories impacting the consumers’ home that we’ve been excited to follow here at Modsy.
Pinterest & Houzz are the go to sources today for home design inspiration online. Some of the newest features to emerge in the inspiration category include visual search, shop-able pins, mark-up tools and algorithmic product matching. This category is an important first part of a consumer’s journey. It aids tremendously in the discovery phase but has often struggled to close the sale given a large volume of hard to identify products buried in user-generated content.
Crowd-sourced interior design and online interior design as a service has made a traditionally offline service available to audiences online. This is a fantastic resource for those consumers with large scale projects or in need of a professional service provider for design advice.
Next Gen Furniture Retailers
The consumer in search of a more customizable sofa, the perfect vintage piece or a affordable secondhand item for their home now has more options than ever. There are an assortment of emerging online first furniture retailers providing ever more options and selections to the savvy modern shopper. These new players are wisely tying together the online, mobile and offline shopping experiences for their customers.
The Modsy Opportunity – Seeing It Come To Life
Despite all the innovation in the industry, there is still an important universal pain point that hasn’t been addressed: a way to see design ideas in the context of your own home. This is the need we are addressing at Modsy, and we have made it our mission to solve this massive problem for consumers.
By creating photographic virtual renderings of your room, designed with custom collections you tailor to your taste, we allow you to see how a new design will look in the context of your actual home. No guessing, no questions about dimensions, scale or combinations of pieces. You see your redesigned room virtually. Then you create it in reality.
We can’t wait for 2016 and the continued innovations it will bring to homes everywhere. We are especially excited about bringing the capabilities of Modsy to a bigger and broader audience. We truly believe that the way you shop and design your home is about to change!!
Modsy beta customer quotes
When it comes to designing your home, inspiration is the easy part. We’ve all spent countless hours browsing through boards, flipping through magazines and walking through stores to gather ideas. This is fun at first, but can quickly turn frustrating as we try to translate inspiration into reality.
Today we are proud to announce our new company, Modsy. What if you could see inspirational ideas, designs, and decor all within the context of your own home?
Visualizing design possibilities for a space is one of the largest challenges when it comes to buying home furnishings. The problem space is tremendous. Each year in the US alone, 40M people move to new homes and $300B+ is spent on home improvement projects. The US home furnishings business is a $200B+ industry in the midst of massive change as consumers transition to online and mobile. Eight out of 10 consumers have bought home furnishings online, which only increases the need to “see” and “understand” how these products will look in context. At Modsy, we believe that in the very near future we will all shop online from beautiful and inspiring catalogues of our very own homes.
To date, the attempts to solve this problem have fallen flat. 2D and 3D room planning tools on the market today simply require too much work from the consumer. AR and VR experiences look more like video games where the graphics lose the inspirational and aspirational qualities that are so critical to home design. We could not find a single product in the market that was built with the end consumer in mind and delivered upon the true promise of photorealistic graphics.
MODSY PRODUCT SNEAK PEAK
Here is a quick tour of how Modsy works:
The idea for Modsy was sparked by a lifelong passion for the intersection of design and technology – and for the potential of what is possible at that magical crossroads. Founder Shanna Tellerman has a long history in 3D graphics, balanced by an equal love for art and design. In early 2015, the Modsy Team began to take shape and has since grown into a unique combination of devoted and talented artists, engineers, designers and creators of many stripes. Together, they are turning the Modsy vision into reality.
We are extremely lucky to have had a group of true believers alongside our company from day one. Our investors include Norwest Venture Partners, Metamorphic Ventures, Birchmere Ventures, Ame Cloud Ventures, Google Ventures, BBG Ventures, Astia Angels, Ammunition, and individual angels including Susan Feldman (Co-founder of One Kings Lane), Eoin Harrington (SVP, Restoration Hardware), Heather Reisman (CEO of Indigo), Timur Yumusaklar (CEO of Schumacher), Joanne Wilson, Cindy Padnos, Nancy Pfund, Pascal Levensohn, and several more amazing individuals.
We invite you to join the Modsy community here. We would love to have you join us on this adventure!!
We’ve been doing some work with Rob Royer, founder of the Chicago-based company, Interior Define. They make high-quality, custom, affordable sofas and sectionals. We’re big fans of their work and have used their products in several customer designs. We even have one of their sofas in our San Francisco office! Since customization is key to their offering, it’s difficult for them to convey all the product possibilities on their website. Ideally, they would show their products in actual living spaces, but that’s expensive and time-consuming.
In discussing these challenges with Rob, something we already knew rose to the surface: What Modsy is doing for customers with home design dilemmas works equally well for merchants. We can showcase their products in virtually any environment, and in any configuration. No actual location, products or photoshoot needed.
So we got to work creating a solution for them. Here’s a short story of the process:
The right space
Interior Define wanted an urban setting to demonstrate how well these pieces work in small city spaces. After showing them a bunch of rooms from our archive, they went with this one:
Pretty exciting, right? Just you wait.
The right set up
After changing our (virtual) camera angle and clearing up the view, we tested some layout options. Using Interior Define products and some of our existing accent pieces and accessories, we came up with these ideas: The right brand story
The folks at Interior Define were really enthusiastic about how great it looked and how easily it came together. But while the added accent pieces and accessories dressed up the room, they also obscured the main story – product customization. So we minimized the extras and let the sofas and sectionals be the stars – with seemingly endless combinations of components, fabrics and legs…here’s a sampling:
That did the trick. Rob said, “Having photo-realistic renderings of our custom designs in on-brand spaces is a powerful way of demonstrating our customization capabilities. It also makes it easy for our customers to envision the final product.”
An important thing to note about these images is that while these specific pieces are built frequently, there is rarely a chance for Interior Define to have them professionally photographed. Each piece is shipped to customers immediately upon completion.
The take-away: Modsy made it possible for Interior Define to showcase products on their website in configurations that are not displayed in their showroom and have never been photographed. Working in a digital space, with digital products, made iterations fast and easy. It’s a powerful tool for merchants. The possibilities for where this can lead endless…let’s get to work!