Interior Design Blog

Ownership. Energy. Place.

A New York square foot is often as cramped as a New York minute is fast.

In a New York square foot each element, finish and surface needs to do double duty.  Sometimes triple duty.

The owner asks: how much program can we eek out of this floor plate, and how few dollars can we spend to get there?

The designer asks: can we achieve our client’s goals AND deliver a space that packs a visual punch?

A few smart strategies helped us create a highly functional office space for Memorial Sloan Kettering; one that can flex to accommodate staff changes and also has lots of visual character.

A lively color palette energizes the open work areas. To extend the height of the space, we opted to expose sprinkler piping, use pendant mounted light fixtures and paint the surfaces white. The exterior wall is left uncluttered, to maximize daylight. Using the floor as an opportunity to provide a dramatic “ground,” we worked with Shaw Contract Group’s Hexagon Collection to create a custom installation pattern to define different zones in the space.

Located on two floors of a converted 8 level parking structure in downtown Manhattan, each 3,500 sf space accommodates 32 people in unassigned benching workstations and up to an additional 6 staff in a large, shared manager office. Each floor also has a small conference room, copy/storage area, and individual lockers for computers and personal items. The height and configuration of the lockers also serves as an informal meeting space and coffee bar.

As a New York City-sized […]

Writing on The Wall

A few weeks back a question came in from a designer in our New York office; she was looking for recommendations on good writable wall surface options. Like so many products in our industry, this is a specialty segment that has evolved and improved over the last decade and the options for its use continues to expand.

Walltalkers, a division of Koroseal, introduced dry erase wallcoverings over 20 years ago to remedy the disadvantages of traditional marker boards. They continue to offer several products that give you the look of a whiteboard including magnetic capabilities and projection surfaces.

Development of painted applications came next and these have gone though the most evolution as a product. Painted applications now include low VOC options, and a clear top coat (think “nail polish top coat”) that can be applied to virtually any surface. A few sources for paint products in this category are Sherwin Williams, Wink from Wolf Gordon, FUZE from MDC, and Idea Paint, which was my first introduction to this product.

Here are a few tips that we’ve learned over the years to help ensure a successful application and a happy client.

If you are using true whiteboard paint- Are all the walls in the space going to be white? How will the end-users know which one is ok to write on? Maybe the other walls get some art so you can differentiate which is which.

Similarly, if you are using the clear top-coat on a colored wall or on a veneer- think about how the users will […]