Tag Archives: vintage

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.

 

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Wonderful low budget office redesign


War Child is a wonderful organisation that helps children in war zones. They recently moved offices, and were in need of a low-budget yet representative new home. After offices along the historic canals of Amsterdam and an old church, the new office, a concrete box on top of a small strip mall, was a bit too much of a cold turkey, so they called in help. They really want to spend as much of the money they have on their projects.  So Eckhardt en Leeuwenstein architects, who were commissioned to design the new offices, needed to keep it lean, but mean. And mean it is. I absolutely love the result. Vintage finds from goodwill, all painted in one colour. So simple, so effective.

New War Child offices in Amsterdam. Photo: Evelyn Sanders for Eckhardt en Leeuwenstein

New War Child offices in Amsterdam.
Photo: Evelyn Sanders for Eckhardt en Leeuwenstein

New War Child offices in Amsterdam Photo: Evelyn Sanders for Eckhardt en Leeuwenstein

New War Child offices in Amsterdam. Photo: Evelyn Sanders for Eckhardt en Leeuwenstein

 

 

 

Vintage finds and antiques revamped with old Silk Road fabrics


In my other career as PR, I am sometimes lucky enough to work with highly inspiring clients. Momiq is one of those. An former colleague of mine recently started this company with her sister.

Momiq combines antique and vintage furniture with fabrics from the old silk road

Momiq combines antique and vintage furniture with fabrics from the old silk road

They create wonderful, individual pieces of furniture using antique and vintage pieces upholstered with handcrafted colourful old and new fabrics. The fabrics used are mainly from countries along the old Silk Road. Among others, these are suzanis and ikat fabrics from Uzbekistan. Suzanis are embroidered pieces of cloth made by women in the region of Central Asia. They are an important part of a girl’s dowry and are also used for decorative purposes in Central Asian households. Colors are separately dyed and once the panels are complete and sewn together, the suzani is sometimes slightly mismatched because of this. But in these delightful flaws lies its beauty. Although the aim of Momique is to design in a sustainable way and re-use as much as possible, they also use new fabrics. These are all from established brands such as Designers Guild, Nobilis, Lorca and Osborne & Little.

SOBIR

Sobir is a walnut Fauteuil à la Reine from the Regènce period in France (1715–1723). The front side of Sobir is upholstered with a new fabric Papilio Plain II from Osborne & Little. An embroidered strip from Uzbekistan is attached to the front of the seat

Sisters Lidewij in ‘t Veld and Rosemarijn van Velzen – in ‘t Veld share a love for used furniture, colourful fabrics and different cultures.They roam the planet looking for hidden gems they can use when creating the collections for Momiq.

Sisters Lidewij in ‘t Veld and Rosemarijn van Velzen – in ‘t Veld, founders of Momiq

The first collection is called ‘Nomads’. Trend forecaster Lidewij Edelkoort used the term Nomadism for the trend where boundaries are blurred, and time, culture and place all roll into one. It is this what inspires Momiq. The first collection of chairs each bare the name of an Uzbeki word. Uzbekistan is a country on the old silk road.

Photography sunna & marcvanpraag.com

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

Little things


A little red flower I found right outside my door. It must have blown away from the planters outside my neighbours kitchen window. I put it in a small vintage vase. It makes me smile.

Little red flower