Tag Archives: studio

A Spanish holiday retreat made by a cow!


This is amazing! Design company Ensamble Studio brought in help of a special talent to build this neat little holiday studio; a cow. They covered stacked hay bales in concrete, buried this, and once hardened, allowed Paulina, the said cow, to eat away the hay inside. This took about a year, she took her time I guess, but the result was very much worth the wait! They call it The Truffle.

The Truffle by Ensamble Studio

The Truffle by Ensamble Studio

The Truffle by Ensamble Studio

Yeah, I can see myself taking a breaker there….

Source: Worthytoshare

Photography: Ensamble Studio

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Cool office redesign for storage provider City Box


City Box has undergone a considerable transformation. The Dutch branch of the supplier of storage space wanted to position itself as a quality brand and this meant its image of price fighter had to go. This called for a broad approach in which this vision had to be translated into concrete and tangible design ideas and implementations. The logo, pay-off, interior and exterior of the head office; work wear, signage of the branches, as well as the interior and exterior of the pilot branch in Den Bosch have been dealt with. Amsterdam based Studio Babette Porcelijn was hired for this extensive operation.

Sketch for City Box office redesign by Babette Porcelijn

Sketch for City Box office redesign by Babette Porcelijn

The client first
From the first moment customers connect with City Box, usually through the website or at one of the branches, they should feel welcome and that City Box is thinking along with them. In consultation with Babette, City Box’s Online Product Manager and external experts improved the website. The site addresses its visitors directly and offers them the possibility to arrange most things online. This functionality will be gradually extended in the near future. Not only the website, but also the reception area of the branches were improved. Before, clients had to ring the bell so an employee could let them in. Now, the door automatically opens. Babette designed a coffee corner for the pilot branch in Den Bosch where customers and employees can have a quiet conversation, or customers that are in the middle of moving house can recover their breath.

Coffee Corner in one of City Box's branches. Photography - Babette Porcelijn for City Box

Coffee Corner in one of City Box’s branches. Photography – Babette Porcelijn for City Box

 

Recycled materials in the interior design

The customer experience plays an important role in the new service centre that Babette equipped. Next to high-end materials Babette also used second hand products, building materials, and cardboard in the design of the interior. A counter made from stacked up removal boxes, different types of chairs all spray-painted in one colour, lamps made from porcelain cups or cardboard, a table top featuring old record sleeves, and Persian rugs; they all refer to the world of moving house, renovating or storing dear personal items.

Old record sleeves and unicolour painted vintage furniture recreate the world of storage and personal belongings. Photography: Babette Porcelijn for City Box

 

Use of vintage finds, recycled materials and hints to the world of storage and personal belonings in City Box service center interior. Photography: Babette Porcelijn for City Box

Use of vintage finds, recycled materials and hints to the world of storage and personal belonings in City Box service center interior. Photography: Babette Porcelijn for City Box

Babette: “It was fantastic to be able to create an overall concept like this. I got a chance to use all my skills and knowledge. From translating City Box’s vision into a brand strategy, to the design and realization of concrete solutions. To make all this happen I worked with various experts from my network and external companies that City Box does business with. I also received a lot of help from City Box’s own employees. Together we were able to deliver the quality that you can see today.’

Babette has a degree in Industrial Design Engineering at the TU in Delft. She spent ten years working for design agencies as a communication designer. Her clients included Sara Lee, Heineken International, KLM, and E.ON, but also for small and medium sized enterprises. Since 2011 Babette has been working as an independent strategic designer. She develops the strategy, design, and content of communication means. She works cross-media, creating interior design, graphic design and interactive design. Among her clients are ‘dienst Noord/Zuidlijn’, Griph law & tax, KWPS, Urban Resort and Pit4Business.

 

The smallest apartments in Amsterdam


A top three of teeny-tiny apartments in the Amsterdam real estate market.

1. 16m2 / 172 ft2, right on the canal

This very compact refurbished studio apartment on Amsterdam’s posh Prinsengracht offers all you need. A new kitchen with basic appliances, a small freshly retiled bathroom with shower, toilet and vanity. The roof is sloped,further limiting the available floor space. But it has its charm, and I can imagine the view, once one sticks their head out of the window, is quite nice. The studio is in the front of the building, so canal side. It was on the market for €120.000 / $162.000. That’s €7500 per m2 / $942 per ft 2, which is quite steep even for Amsterdam standards. But it sold within 4 months.

A tiny studio right on an Amsterdam canal

A tiny studio right on an Amsterdam canal

Refurbished and move-in ready

Refurbished and move-in ready

2. 22 m2 / 237 ft 2, again on the same canal

Funny enough the second smallest apartment is not far from the previous one. Again, this tiny studio is in a very characteristic and typical Amsterdam building on the canal. However, this apartment is not as refurbished as the other one, and the kitchen leaves a lot more to desire. But it does have double doors opening to a French balcony and I guess it’s bigger. The apartment faces the garden in the back, so no canal view. A big bonus is a storage room on the ground floor and access to a communal garden. This one was on the market for €129.000 / $174.400 and sold in a bit over 4 months. The price per m2 / ft 2 of €5864 / $736 didn’t scare potential buyers.

Another studio on one of Amsterdam's famous canals

Another studio on one of Amsterdam’s famous canals

French doors leading to a French balcony facing the communal gardens

French doors leading to a French balcony facing the communal gardens

View to the gardens in the back. The owner of this studio has shared use of the garden

View to the gardens in the back. The owner of this studio has shared use of the garden

3. A 23 m2 / 248 ft 2 studio with balcony overlooking a canal in up and coming Amsterdam West

This building is a bit of a landmark. It’s right along a canal by a working drawbridge, so many of Amsterdam’s inhabitants have seen it while waiting for passing boats. It’s in a part of town that was not really desirable up until a few years back. Since then, many people have ventured that way for its cheap real estate, and its proximity to the more popular parts of the city. This brought in new shops, bars and restaurants and in turn caused a fast rise in prices and a shift in the area’s popularity. That makes the price of €89.000 / $120.000 surprising.  Only since the crunch have prices dropped slightly below €100.000 for the smallest of places in lesser areas. The owner must have been going for a quick sale. Like the other, this one sold in a little over 4 months. Surprising because flats in this building tend to sell faster. Especially considering this is one of the few with a balcony. Only the first and top floor units have these. The apartment consists of a small living/bedroom, a separate kitchen, nice when you only have one room, and a small bathroom. There are a few built-in closets. The view is quite spectacular. And there’s a shared garden, laundry facilities, private storage and a communal bike storage. The building itself is an architectural gem so all in all a very good deal for €3870 per m2 / $484 ft 2.

The 'Geuzenflat' overlooks a working drawbridge in one of Amsterdam's newer canals.

The nicknamed ‘Geuzenflat’ overlooks a working drawbridge in one of Amsterdam’s newer canals.

The building's official name is Oranjehof, and is listed as a monument

The building’s official name is Oranjehof, and is listed as a monument

The door leads to a balcony overlooking the canal

The door leads to a balcony overlooking the canal

 

Famous Wisseloord Studio’s restyled by the Huizenfee


Remember my earlier post about ‘De Huizenfee‘, the Home Fairy? She recently sent me these pictures of her work in the famous Wisseloord Studio’s in Hilversum, the Netherlands. These studio’s were set up by Philips in 1978 to record albums for their record label. Many famous people made use of the facilities including Elton John, ELO, The Rolling Stones, the Police and the late Michael Jackson. The studio recently underwent big renovations and that called for a new interior too. De Huizenfee and her magic wand were called to decorate. An architect provided the blank slate. Ikea, vintage design, one off’s and some amazing pieces from the old interior, together with the magic touch of de Huizenfee provided the ingredients for the final result. Great work!

The White Lounge at Wisseloord Studio’s. Styling by de Huizenfee

The Blue Lounge at Wisseloord Studio’s. Styling by de Huizenfee