Is designing for commercial interiors any different than residential? As time goes on, more and more commercial spaces are becoming “resimercial” – meaning that they feature more qualities and elements that would normally be considered residential.
Likewise from the residential side, more and more modern homes are starting to look like office spaces. What is driving this trend? Here are some of the influences that drive our commercial space design:
This is a big category, but in simple terms we look at who is using the space and why. We ask what is desirable for both the builder or developer and the user.
In the case of a multi-family situation with heavy use, we look for highly durable surfaces. Specifically with our Lobby entrance design, we kept the flow open but also considered areas to park bicycles, seating areas to wait for guests, and simple homier touches like plants and side tables.
We considered not only usability, but also maintenance issues to satisfy both sides of the commercial equation. By specifying Wilsonart® High Pressure Laminate (HPL) in our design, we knew the lobby would withstand high traffic and regular commercial cleaning for the long-term.
Tip: Consider end users of the space now, five years from now, and ten years from now. As a dwelling ages, the occupants’ needs and values can shift. When in doubt, turn to industry research for patterns of changing behaviors.
2. Long-term Sustainability
We look for products that employ sustainable practices in their material development and manufacturing. By using Wilsonart® HPL, we know that certain sustainability levels are met and maintained to help the environment.
For example, Wilsonart has certification with the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC®); NSF International; SCS Global Services; Underwriters Laboratories (UL); and UL GREENGUARD Gold Certification. These types of certifications mean that the manufacturer is mindful of maintaining best practices for manufacturing.
Tip: Want to make sure your products are certified? Check manufacturer’s website for more information @ https://www.wilsonart.com/wilsonart-laminate-sustainability-information
This is perhaps the biggest trend with interior design today. Are the spaces you are designing encouraging wellness? Some simple questions can relate to cleanliness, color, fabrication practices, etc. As we were designing the dentist office, we considered what type of cabinetry door to specify to ensure easy use, cleaning and modernity.
We also considered color and style of the environment to help patients feel welcome and as though they were in a friendly space vs. a medicinal, cold environment. By layering styles of surfaces from woodgrains to pops of brighter color, we were able to build a space that patients wanted to visit and that lifted up their mood creating a more desirable feeling of wellness.
Tips: Look for oversized wood hardware for easy cabinetry opening @muuto. Borrow lighting trends from the residential side of the business by creating lighting focal points @wakanine.
4. Community and Authenticity
Creating community within commercial spaces can be tricky. In our retail design, we built in a curved countertop area for the cash wrap to modernize and welcome guests from all sides of the store. We were able to build the top with Wilsonart® Traceless™ HPL with a curve in fabrication due to its inherent flexibility.
Traceless™ Laminate is a great option for countertop surfaces because it hides fingerprints and is easy to wipe clean. The matte black finish is on trend for both commercial and residential interiors.
Mixing patterns from Wilsonart’s Virtual Design Library such as the HPL Indigo Shibori for the base of the cash wrap with the Raspberry Parfait Honeycomb on the shelves gives the boutique shop authenticity with unique design and color.
Grounding the entire space is the Italian Silver Ash HPL on the wall that warms and brings the outside in with a soft woodgrain pattern. Artistry and authenticity are both important features to build community.
Tip: To create your unique space look to the Wilsonart’s Laminate design gallery: https://www.wilsonart.com/laminate/design-library