How to bring colour and vibrancy into the office
Is it just me or are we are hurtling towards the summer and the end of another school year? Add in the lifting of Covid restrictions in a few weeks’ time and it feels like we’re heading into another period of adjustment and change.
I’m approaching it with the mother of all to-do lists top of which is booking the Cousins children into summer camps and activities left right and centre to keep them occupied during the summer holidays. Whether we make it out of Ilkley for anything other than a traditional British camping holiday remains to be seen. I know many of you are in the same position and I wish you the very best of luck – the juggle is very real.
Thinking about making changes to your home: plan ahead
Life at AMC Design is as hectic as ever. I know from chatting with others in the business (interior designers, trades, and suppliers) that we’re all incredibly busy, which is fantastic news for everyone involved in the industry.
For clients though, it means that there are much longer than normal lead times – even for small projects. If you’re thinking about making changes to your home, I suggest getting in touch as soon as possible almost before you’ve even had the idea and I’ll pop you on my waiting list.
I’m now fully booked until the end of the year. I hate turning down clients, it goes against all my instincts, but if I say yes to a project, I want to be sure that I can do it justice. I also know that some of trades are booked up months in advance which is having a huge impact on getting projects off the ground.
The consequences of Covid 19, cargo ships getting stuck in the Suez, the US building programme and Brexit have spread far and wide, impacting our industry as much as any other. Buying those the beautiful ceramic tiles from the continent really isn’t as straightforward as it used to be.
Get busy with the mood board
But it’s not all doom and gloom. Maybe spending the waiting time scouring Pinterest, social media, websites, and magazines to pull together a big old mood board and file so that when you do get the go ahead, you’ve got ideas we can work with. This planning and inspiration stage can be good fun!
Get creative with your office space
This month I’m super excited to be able to share this latest project with you. It’s a little different for me and it’s a topical one too – an office. Conversation might have been all about working from home these past 16 months but with more people leaving the house to go back to work, going into the office has become a bit of a talking point.
One clear message I’m picking up is that for many of us offices are sociable places. Yes, you go there to work but they’re spaces designed to bring people together to do the work. We make connections there – friends even, we chat and get creative, innovate, and throw ideas around.
I know many businesses are already on board with being bold and creative with their office interiors, but I’d love to see more make their working space a great space for people to work in. That doesn’t have to mean table tennis tables, swings, and banked arena style seating – but it could, depending on your business.
This does all need to be balanced with calm, quiet areas for the actual work to be done but the two aren’t mutually exclusive.
You can be clever and creative with colour even in the office
Pops of colour on upholstery or on the odd wall will inject energy. Office furniture can seem a little uninspiring but changing the seat pads for vibrant colours rather than standard black or steel grey immediately lifts the spirits. Painting walls and hanging interesting artwork injects personality too.
All of which is a roundabout way of me introducing you to my latest project. The images from the photo shoot the other week just landed in my inbox and yes – I totally squealed when I saw them.
Huge thanks to the dream team of photographer Heidi Marfitt, my design assistant Rebecca Garnett, Emmie Glover who joined me for a week of work experience from BGS for making this shoot so easy and a lot of fun.
And a massive thank you too to my client’s staff for being so patient and such good sports while we set up the shoot around them while they worked.
Redesigning the office: the brief
In a sense the brief was simple: bring colour and personality into the office, reflecting the corporate brand. But as with all projects, there are challenges and opportunities alike. Challenges like:
- the acoustics – creating quiet spaces for quiet work in an open space.
- refurbishing not one but six cow sheds to make the most of all of the available space.
- redesigning the interior to give employees a variety of spaces to work in; including quiet zones for one to ones and larger spaces where everyone can get together.
Plants, colourful chairs and a wall mounted light fitting bring vibrancy and a touch of fun to this meeting space.
How cool are these chairs? They bring privacy to an open plan space – perfect for phones calls or quiet one to ones. And that patterned wall? It runs along the length of one wall and I love it!
You know how much I love a bold wall colour! Add in a bold piece of art work, plants and bright chairs and this corner of the office is now a lot more interesting. And office lighting doesn’t have to mean strip florescent lighting either. I used ceiling pendants in the kitchen and in some of the office space to provide ambient lighting. (Read more about lighting in this blog)
Brightly coloured cabinets, blue coloured half partitions, coloured seat pads and plants. There are so many small ways you can bring colour and energy into a space.
And don’t forget the kitchen. Perfect for having a break from the laptop or having a quick chat with a colleague. Flexible seating and dark cabinets that anchor the space and act as the perfect backdrop to all the colour.
Thank you for reading! Don’t forget to get in touch if you’re thinking about making changes to your home or office and send in your interior design questions too. I’m thinking of dedicating next month’s blog to answering a few of the most common questions clients ask me!
Drop me a line, I’d love to hear from you.
All photography by Heidi Marfitt Photography.