It’s the time of new adventure, opportunities and trends. Our lifelong fascination with office interiors just keeps growing, and this post is the first of many – exploring design, satisfying our curiosity, and inspiring you.
While there is no right or wrong when it comes to trends, this post outlines a collection of the favourite ‘big news’ items we’re looking forward to seeing more of in 2019!
Showing your true colours
Company’s are becoming ‘tribes’. Teams of like-minded individuals who enjoy their distinctive culture, and embrace the brand image through bold office interior choices. No more is an office purely an office – it is becoming an exciting expression of the brand’s voice.
Our recently completed project in Aldgate Tower expressed just this – their bright colours and cheerful look was echoed in the interior, through colourful furniture by Haiken. With bleachers, bean-bags and upholstered sofas, as well as the usual task desking, the scene is set for the team to relax and collaborate in a space that feels ‘them’.
Lay on the hotel experience
Room service? We wish! This rapidly emerging trend is a progression from last years ‘’rise of resimercial’. We’re done with houseplants, macramé and personal mementos and are plunging into layers of sumptuous and tasteful luxury. Inspired by hotels or restaurants, this trend is all about the work ‘experience’ to maximise talent retention and inspire staff. Think rich button-back sofas, designer lighting and beautiful stone and wood finishes.
No longer is it ‘drink Fridays’ with bottles emerging from a kitchen cupboard. Continuing from the above point, there is a definite trend for laying everything on ‘in-house’. A barista and coffee machine, hot and healthy lunches, or drinks from the office bar. We’re slightly obsessed with this office bar design, from the Expensify offices in Portland – masterfully combining slick black cupboards with brass hardware and mirror finishes.
Yes, open plan is still a good idea. Yes, it may well be going stronger than ever. Yes, we will always be advocates for open plan. However, there comes a time when people can have too much open space, and need a little private, concentration zone all to themselves. Whether it be based on a pod or cave system, independent rooms, or a beanbag in the corner…it’s all about catering to the current wants of every team member and aiding their concentration with flexible solutions.
Alongside this trend for privacy, we are seeing an increasing number of office library environments – the ultimate silent space. Think dark walls, book-lined shelves and lots of comfy seating to work from.
Co-working is king
We all know the likes of WeWork (or The We Company), local.london, or Boutique Workplace co. We’ve watched their huge increase in success over the past couple of years and now other offices are following their lead. Now the trend isn’t limited to start-ups and freelancers… Companies are taking inspiration from the productivity that thrives in such collaborative spaces; it’s proven that seeing new faces and networking with strangers increases work focus and inspiration like nothing else. Many offices now share or let out desk space to emulate the vibes of co-working for the day-to-day in an established company.
Biophilia lives on
Green fingers are continuing into the new year, but this time we see a more consideration given to biophilia. It’s not just ‘putting a plant there’ for the sake of it, instead biophilia is progressing to a new design status, being incorporated into architecture, lighting and becoming a true ‘part of the furniture’ when it comes to interior design. Handmade artisan plant pots, natural style moss walls complete with dripping ferns, metallic or even upholstered planters – whatever the style of an office, it can be hugely enhanced with the inclusion of verdant greenery. And as for the statistics, well they hit the market last year, but there’s an increase in productivity and an increase in creativity for starters…
There’s been a huge surge forwards in the technical side of seating, which we’re not ashamed to shout about. As people’s awareness as to health and the correct working position grows, so evolves the office chair. Now, as well as becoming minutely tailored to the science of ergonomics, extremely comfortable and adjustable, they’re also emerging into some beautiful sculpture-like shapes.
The above chair is the Haiken Paxton, a leader in it’s class.
Other technological advancements in the office include air-charging ports for mobiles, clever cable management systems (some are now magnetic), as well as more aspects becoming bluetooth connectable or voice activated.
Nomadic and artisan
Everything has to have a story. Whether it was handcrafted by an artisan, or sourced from a different county, there has been an increase in office interiors that go deeper than the surface look. Building up layers of intrigue, the artisan products add a feel of exploration to any interior and create a warm and inspiring environment for staff.
Each of Haiken’s chairs have a story of ergonomics, a unique design and a character of their own.
Where two worlds collide. The tasteful combination of old, iconic buildings and slick, modern interiors continue to spark excitement. Around London we’re seeing lots of industrial buildings (e.g. the beautiful Tom Dixon showroom in the Coal Office) converted into dramatic office spaces. While the trend has been on the increase for a time, we see people’s appreciation of historic and industrial buildings come to the fore in 2019, the question being how modern you dare to go on the interior.