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The Modern Offices You’ll Wish You Lived In

The Modern Offices You’ll Wish You Lived In

The Modern Offices You’ll Wish You Lived In

Our designers are nailing the latest trend—"resimercial." Tour the cutting-edge commercial designs you’ll wish you could go home to.

When you think of an office what do you think of? The Office? Comically depressing desks sandwiched among an annex of cubicles and a conference room with aging Venetian blinds?

No one wants to work there. And thankfully modern workspaces don’t force you to.

Because 16-hour workdays coupled with a stiff environment and a stuffy, isolated cubicle would burn anyone out, employers are taking steps to ensure workers are happy, satisfied, and at-ease. Offices are stepping away from the standard drab desks meets ergonomic chairs and taking cues from residential design. If you want a creative brand, you need a creative space. Hence the latest office buzz word “resimerical.”

Think the palettes and pieces you’d use at home for a sophisticated-meets-comfortable aesthetic. Homepolish designers have, of course, been at the forefront of blossoming trend—crafting spaces like Paperless Post’s charmingly comfortable space or Anomaly’s edgy digs.

How Did Offices Get Like This Anyway
The current office is rooted in the Mad Men era. In 1967 Herman Miller’s “Action Office II,” birthed what we know today as the cubicle. At the time, the innovation in office design was seen as a means toward better privacy and more ability to express yourself in your individual cube. Communal spaces were low priority. Conference rooms doubled as the only spaces for company shindigs.

But now workspaces are just the latest item for startup culture to “hack” and innovate. When we asked our designers where they first saw open-plan offices with residential furnishings, they all pointed to Silicon Valley. The tech hotspot needed to keep employees happy enough to maintain the frenetic pace required to keep the startups profitable and afloat. No one needed to sit in one place anymore—as long as you had wifi, you were at work. Citing research from the Washington Post, Homepolish’s Jennifer Wallenstein opines, “The 40-hour work week is dead, and with Americans spending more and more time at work, it seems only natural that we would crave a space that incorporates the comforts of home.”

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It’s important for companies to create a range of environments to give employees variety and to encourage collaboration at work.

A New Way of Thinking
The new approach to office design can best be described with the words of twelveNYC CEO Katie Conovitz, “Work shouldn’t be a chore–you should be able to find inspiration in your workspace.” Whether it’s the slides in the Google NYC headquarters or the giant graffiti murals in Facebook’s Menlo Park offices, offices are more apt than ever to step outside of the box to keep their employees satisfied.

Now you want to offer your employees balance: some employees might love working at a buzzing communal table, while others need a quiet space to concentrate. Then you want to level up. At Quotidian NYC, giant leather sofas lounge beneath oversize chandeliers. Roofstock in Oakland features a collaborative kitchenette space, not to mention a hidden speakeasy. At Pluck PR in Boston, it nearly feels as if you’ve stepped into a home what with books stacked in corners, a fireplace, and saturated wall colors. And Trinity Ventures in San Francisco has plush Persian carpets layered with ornate wall coverings.

The goal, as designer Julia Haney Montanez notes: “injecting a sense of comfort and familiarity into offices so employees aren’t bolting out the door at the end of the day.”

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Work shouldn’t be a chore–you should be able to find inspiration in your workspace.

Wait. So it there still a difference between residential and office design?
Yes. You still need to design your apartment differently than your advertising agency. For one, there are the rigorous standards and much more significant wear and tear that office furniture receives. And there’s also material selection, ease of cleaning, and mobility to consider.

Thankfully the furniture market has taken note. Classic commercial-quality brands are like Knoll, Herman Miller, Teknion, Steelcase, and Vitra constantly improving on aesthetics while meeting manufacturing requirements. While brands like BluDot, Design Within Reach, and West Elm are working to provide their recognizable options up-to-code. And designers are balancing it all by selecting key pieces from non-commercial specific brands to create unexpected moments within their spaces.

And if you can’t find what you want, our designers aren’t afraid to go custom. Tina Rich and Tali Roth commissioned a 17-foot, “floating,” pink velvet bench in twelveNYC’s reception area to subvert the standard waiting rub vibes.

So How Do You Do It?
So what are the actionable design elements that mark the transition? Here’s what our designers recommend.

Lighting: Forego linear fluorescents that will automatically make your office (and your face) look tired. Layer light like you’d see at home, with sconces, pendants, and even table lamps on long communal desks to create a warmer and more welcoming glow.

Seating: It’s all about options! Creating seating vignettes in addition to more traditional works spaces. Standing desks, bar-height tables, communal tables, and lounges give your space versatility.

Color: Infusing your office space with color not only makes it more welcoming and fun, it is also an opportunity to incorporate company brand into the space. From bold wall colors to graphics, artwork, and upholstery. The hallmark of new spaces is a sophisticated, non-beige palette.

Rooms: Kitchens, café spaces, a reading nook or two…new types of spaces allow people to find moments of peace and to reorient their bodies out of drone-like seating arrangements. Multi-functionality is key, when Tina Rich was designing for coding magnate/mega-scale model Karlie Kloss she knew everything needed to do double (or triple) duty. “We wanted the meeting room to feel like a living space and the conference room to double as a dining room for dinner parties,” Tina says.

Plants: Bringing green into the work space literally breathes more life into a previously formal environment. And those little guys have been proven to boost productivity.

Unexpected Materials and Accents: Warm woods, twinkly brass, and touches from home give contrast to all those monitors. By mixing in underutilized at the office options (velvet, lacquer, antiques) and sprinkling in personal touches, spaces feel more cohesive—and a lot less corporate.

Get inspired by our gallery or book a Homepolish designer to create an office as beautiful as your brand.