“What’s-next” overload. It’s the period we hit about halfway through January, overwhelmed with the barrage of emails and articles packed with endless hot trends to watch out for in the New Year. But what about design mentalities with staying power? Materials of the moment go in and out of style, and even Pantone Colors of the Year fall out of relevance with time. (Sorry, Greenery.)
So, with a different direction in mind, we chatted with a few Baskervill designers.
Do you want to pass through or explore? That’s the type of question Hannah, an interior designer in Baskervill’s Hospitality studio, asks when approaching projects. She calls this aspect of her evergreen design sensibility “interactive interiors,” where people are a key part of what informs any given experience. Art, technology and seemingly ordinary items, like tables and chairs, morph into chances for guests to move and personalize their surroundings and breathe life into an otherwise static environment.
“Because at the end of the day, people are what make a space beautiful and purposeful and valuable,” says Hannah. And a design that truly understands and monopolizes on that sensibility will always be timeless.
For Jeff Taylor, an associate and project designer in the Manufacturing + Logistics studio, most projects start with a proverbial blank page. “Sketching that first line is always the hardest,” admits Jeff, who often designs with complex processes and constantly evolving technologies in mind. Jeff tackles these uncertainties with thoughtful considerations regarding the placement of pillars, load bearing walls and flooring.
Step back and think about it for a moment: A well-placed pillar makes or breaks how a space can be opened up, and load-bearing walls affect shape and how a building gets used. Essentially, the thoughtfulness of how these key components are laid out determines whether a building can have a long life or if it’ll always be purpose-built for one thing. With multi-use spaces on the rise, the ability to deliver long-term flexibility is critical.
“Without people, a building is nothing,” says Thomas, an interior designer in the firm’s Workspace studio. Knowing that a workforce dispersed across multiple floors can erode how culture forms and people work together, Thomas always uses a people-first lens when assessing critical design moves. Specific user needs are addressed before exploring how various groups of individuals can come together as a community within the space.
“Minimal design can be classic and beautiful in its simplicity,” says Susan, principal and director of workplace strategies.
She’s a big fan of how Mid-Century and industrial architecture, with their clean lines and exposed structure, can ground a space and provide a canvas for great design. While Mid-Century is all the rage these days, Susan cautions it’s not a style that works for all projects! Instead, Susan challenges designers to never default to one aesthetic and instead celebrate the individuality of clients and their space via an honest use of materials and the building’s original bones.
Consider this your sneak peek, because we’ll be taking a closer look at this project and the people behind it in February.