A UFO Theme for a Former Boeing Rocket Scientist

The Project: A UFO Theme for a Former Boeing Rocket Scientist


When you get the chance to build a project for a retired rocket scientist, you don’t say no! This customer in Lexington, Alabama originally wanted a rocket theme for her new business, a restaurant and gift shop. As she worked with the architect and kicked around ideas, she landed on a colorful UFO theme that would thrill visitors. We were happy to design a custom soffit that would bring her vision to life.

The D.H. Schmidt team considers how to design the UFO pieceProject Must-Haves

  • A soffit in the shape of a UFO
  • Recessed lighting
  • A backlit mural featuring spaceships and planets 
  • Porthole windows
  • Space-age material in satiny purple and blue
  • Laminate that would resemble stainless steel

The Challenges

  1. A tight budget: One of the difficulties we faced with this project was that the client had a limited budget. We wanted to do so much, all at once, but ultimately decided to complete the project in phases to keep it cost-effective. 
  2. The ceiling height: It’s not easy to attach a 16 ft diameter spaceship to a ceiling. And because the ceiling was fairly low, we needed the entire project to have a low profile. That presented challenges as our team measured, and measured again, to get the dimensions of the project just right.
  3. Lighting and materials: When we build a unique project for clients, like this one, we want every piece to match the theme and fit seamlessly together. That way, we create more than just casework; we give clients and their customers an immersive experience. For a UFO project, we knew that the lighting had to offer a space-age glow.

The finished UFO Soffit installed in the restaurantDH Schmidt’s Solutions:

Each part of this project gave our technicians the chance to get creative. Here are some of the solutions our team came up with: 

  • The UFO: Our soffit materials included satin metal, laminates, and a whole lot of rivets. It took designing, measuring, and redesigning to ensure that the entire project could be installed on the low ceiling without hanging too low. We didn’t want any bumped heads, just oohs and aahs.
  • Lighting and other features: To fit the theme, we created recessed lighting solutions made to resemble burners on a spaceship. A colorful mural and a steampunk-dressed mannequin completed the look. 
  • Installation: We prepared a how-to doc and a video to show our installers how to put the whole thing together. On the ceiling! Our client noted how easy the project was to install, and we look forward to creating even more original casework for her as we plan stage 2 and beyond. 

 


The Final Project: A Space-Age Attraction in Alabama

We’re proud to say that this former-rocket scientist’s business has become an attraction and a destination store in the area! Our work wows kids and adults alike. 

Throughout our years in business, we’ve discovered that creativity, flexibility, and tenacity are needed to bring an ambitious project to life. We’re proud of the work we did for this client. What can our crew design for your business?

 

 

  • The D.H. Schmidt team measures twice during the UFO soffit build.
  • The custom curved pieces of the UFO soffit come together with a perfect fit.
  • Space-age sparkling materials for a funky piece.
  • The UFO soffit is mostly assembled.
  • The finished UFO Soffit installed in the restaurant

 

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