Taking up an entire city block on 8th Avenue between 15th & 16th street, Google’s Chelsea headquarters is not only one of the largest office spaces but also one of the most unique as well. Renowned for its unconventional approach to office layouts and commitment to “create the happiest, most productive workplace in the world”, the tech giant is known for it use of design to stimulate creativity and encourage collaboration amongst its employees.
So when Google approached us looking for a unique, tactile wallcovering that would add visual interest to their café, I was very excited for the opportunity to work with such an innovative company and in such a massive space. Inspired by the shifting landscapes of our shared terrains, I created a custom-designed ‘Terrains’ mural with vibrant orange accents, sewn on top of the wallpaper, adding a shot of color into the otherwise muted cafe.
From the beginning of the project, it became clear the process would not be as linear as some of our more conventional installations. First, sourcing a felt color that met the brand standard for Google, while still adhering to fire & safety codes proved to be quite the challenge, but given our broad pool of resources, I was able to source a material that met both criteria.
Secondly, given the bespoke nature and non-repeating elements of the pattern, this design required a pain-staking level of patience and attention to detail. A lot of time went into designing the mural and making it flow naturally amongst the rest of the space’s kaleidoscopic colors and features. Beyond the digital design came the challenge of realizing this pattern in the physical realm, as all of the felt accents were sewn on by hand in an intricate, time-consuming process.
Once install day came around, this custom design was also met with some pushback from the installers, as they had never seen this new type of product before. Luckily for both of us, they were pleasantly surprised to learn that it hung like a traditional wallcovering and adhered to the wall with great ease.
Once the wallpaper was up and installed, I was really proud of the final results. Being that this was the first time I used an accented felt that was so contrasting, I had concerns that such a bright color would end up looking too busy in the space. In the end however, the decisions on the color and felt options proved the right ones as they added the perfect amount of pop to be intriguing, while still managing to be soothing overall. When you’re actually in the space, the dimensional orange felt protrudes out of the mural in unexpected ways, infusing a new personality to the space which I was really happy about. Since the project has gone up, I have even had a few requests from new clients who have seen it and sought to emulate the same color palette in their respective spaces.
Have a design in mind? Looking to make your workspace more collaborative & productive? Contact the studio today either via email or by phone at 718-207-9587, we'd love to discuss your next project.