Our Process – Interiors
Philosophy – we believe:
- Interior design and furniture selection has a profound social, psychological and physiological impact on the user.
- The combined energy of space/volume with personal, tactile participation (light, thermal qualities, acoustics, color, texture, smell, and technology) is the full architectural experience, should be developed concurrently and convey a strong, intentional message.
- The selection of well integrated elements requires a high level of client commitment and involvement, professional guidance, knowledge of the current marketplace and a tenacious enthusiasm to make each experience significant.
StudioGC offers unparalleled service and quality to our clients by investing time to understand all the aspirations, goals and pragmatic needs of the project while developing workable design solutions that will meet user requirements, inspire and delight. Working closely with the client, we approach each project with a fresh attitude, tailoring the final design to the specific tactile, functional and budgetary requirements of the project.
Process – listen first.
Similar to our architectural practice, our interior design and furniture selection is based on a feedback model. After initial discussion with the client, we analyze and synthesize all the pertinent information to produce new information for discussion, critique and modification. The information takes a number of formats-two and three dimensional drawings, text documents, cost estimate spreadsheets, interactive computer models, product literature, fabric and product samples, etc.-depending on the phase and scope of the project. Through client feedback, we continually refine the design from broad brush conceptual ideas to highly specific decisions concerning features of particular products. By developing information in clear, decision ready formats, the client can react and act decisively. Eventually we reach consensus on colors, products, costs and technology features.
Sustainable Practices – Individual and planet health is the goal.
Our designers offer specialized knowledge of interior materials and FF&E (furniture, fixtures and equipment) that promote health through toxin-free materials and good indoor air quality. (Formaldehyde for example, is a known carcinogen but used throughout the furniture and cabinetry industry. Sourcing formaldehyde-free products is one of the many ways our interior designers promote healthy environments.) Cautious of ‘green washing’, our environmentally responsible professionals take a holistic approach, make a commitment to sustainability (including lifecycle costs) and are constantly in search of ways to diminish a design’s negative impact on the world around us.
We regularly select interior finishes from an established database of products that take environmental factors (source, recycled content, off gassing, manufacturing, end of life recycling, etc.) into consideration:
Furniture Fabric – selection considers the use of chemicals, renewable fibers, animal by-products and whether part or all of the fabric is biodegradable. Sustainable fibers include both plant and animal fibers.
Flooring – in addition to high recycled content broadloom and carpet tiles, options include FSC (Forestry Stewardship Council) and reclaimed wood, rapidly renewable materials and abundant materials as well as natural stone, tile or terrazzo and finished in situ concrete.
Carpets – both carpet and underlayment can be made from virgin material or recycled content. Many carpet manufacturers thankfully have reclamation/recycling programs when their product has reached the end of its useful life.
Walls and ceilings coverings – include paint, tile, plaster, wall coverings and wall panels.
A critical aspect of our work is accurate, detailed estimating both to reassure the client that the design scope and quality is within budget and that in the end, the design vision can be implemented. We take estimating very seriously.
Interiors work related to built-in finishes (floor and wall coverings, ceilings, etc.) is typically estimated along with architectural elements and the engineered systems (MEP/FP and Technology infrastructure) because this work is usually bid as part of the building construction. Furniture on the other hand, represents a different kind of effort. Early concept estimates are established on gross area and experience. Later estimates are tied directly to discussion with manufacturer’s representatives concerning market costs for specific furniture types.
In the case of both interior finishes and furniture, we recommend estimates of cost be performed at multiple critical junctures during the design and documentation phases. Typically, this means at the end of Schematic Design and Design Development and at approximately 75% completion of the Construction Documents prior to bidding for interiors. Furniture estimates (a minimum of three) are also developed as the design and documents develop. We pride ourselves on accurate estimating throughout the project.