Ben Johnson Interiors

Ben Johnson Interiors

Sector: Professional Services
Location: Leeds
Date: 2021
Size: 1900 sq. ft.

The Brief

Time to do our own space! As a leading office design and commercial build interiors consultancy, we needed an updated base that better reflected our business, creating innovative and purposeful spaces for other businesses, and housing our highly skilled and experienced team in comfort.

We’d been in our previous office for some 20 years but in that time the business had evolved dramatically and our office space wasn’t quite working for us anymore. The new workspace is easier to access, in turn making it easier for our team to return to the office and work in the way they prefer to. With a lot more of the workforce working from home now, we’ve been able to free up space to create some more purpose-driven and dedicated zones, losing those elements which are no longer relevant.

The space is laid over two floors; a desk space upstairs and the meeting rooms, reception and communal areas downstairs. We were keen to ensure we kept original features such as the beams and the brick slips as a reminder of the building’s previous identity.

The Solution

The comfort and safety of our people was a top priority. Downstairs was originally going to be more open plan, aimed at collaborative working, but as the project moved on, this evolved to become an enclosed series of spaces that will be more fit for purpose, including three separate, bookable meeting rooms with their own air-con, to address concerns about noise becoming an issue.

Crittal glazing divides the area while still sharing available light around the space, lending that open feel even in the enclosed private rooms. We wanted these meeting rooms – especially the main boardroom – to really be somewhere to wow clients, also giving us the ability to showcase the latest technology and furniture. The upstairs office is a narrow space so we needed to make sure we made the most of that. All desks are height adjustable, allowing employees to choose how they work, especially for those hotdesking. The vaulted ceiling meant that acoustics were a big consideration up there too.

Working with Bluesky Design, we developed the design to incorporate materials for the floors and panels on the walls and ceilings to help buffer the sound. The rejig also freed up plenty of space for storage and the volume of design drawings etc that come through the office. To balance the hot pink of our brand, we’ve thrown in some muddy greens, mint and a pale blue to create a balanced palette. The addition of more natural materials such as wood, brick and real plants also work well to tone everything down nicely.


The Finished Project

We really feel we’ve created somewhere to be proud to work in, and that our team will want to use. Using furniture and finishes that a client could potentially use was a big deal for us, too. We especially love the way feature carpets have been used to zone spaces and the stylish crittal glazing. The flooring is in fact all from the same range, with a larger woven texture in the initial, communal spaces and then working through to a finer weave in the upstairs office, which is a lovely little touch and brings a seamless and harmonious little detail to the finish.

The living feature wall is an eye-catching impact, adding texture and life to the space when staff and visitors first walk in. It took a few trials of different styles and colour combos to get it right, ensuring everything was legible and as strong as possible but we think we’ve nailed it with the finished design and it makes the most of the full height space.

“We are thrilled with our new office space and feel it really reflects what we’re about as a business: the best designers, furniture, office tech and more.

We had the privilege of creating a new space from the ground up and really thought about what we wanted to achieve and how it would stand the test of time. The result is an inviting, stylish space that encourages our people to work in a way that suits them and makes the most of the various resources and expertise we have within the team.

Clients can come to our space and get a feel for the kind of working environments we create, and we are able to showcase the furniture and fittings that a client can choose for themselves, so it really is an exercise in practising what we preach, too! The feedback has been brilliant and we’re really happy with the outcome.”

Emma Dodsley

Director | Ben Johnson Interiors

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