DESIGNING IN LAYERS
dcc design insights
dcc design team | july 2018
The interior design process is multi-dimensional, requiring industry professionals to constantly think in terms of layers. From schematic to completion, we work with multiple tabs open in our brains, being careful to ensure that every piece of the transformative puzzle is coordinated. I’ve found that the most effective way to achieve this is through layered design.
When designing for the interior environment, there is a lot to be considered – from the architecture, to the facility’s existing brand, to the finishes, construction codes, building mechanics and ultimately the needs of the consumer. Our firm is often tasked with the interior design, planning and branding of relocation and renovation projects both large and small. Therefore, our perspective, much like our process, must be integrated and layered. Our design framework is structured around this specialized approach - what we call Think REDD - Reveal, Establish, Devise and Deliver.
The reveal, or research phase, highlights the client's story and vision. These objectives and goals become the guiding principles for each project, and inspire the initial development and sketches. In a literal sense, we layer our sketches and sheets of trace paper during development. Every addition we make has purpose and presents an innovative idea. At any moment, we must be prepared to alter an existing design, regularly adding and taking away until we are left with a polished, cohesive product. We must be flexible and forward-thinking as we develop design solutions, inevitably burning through layers of trace paper during a productive charette. Change is inevitable as we establish a strong line of communication and collaboration with the client. From start to finish, an efficient designer will prioritize the needs of the end-user, while also maintaining a focus on the project objectives and how these elements overlap with the evolving design intent.
In a more metaphorical sense, working in the healthcare sector of commercial design, we observe a broad range of design preferences and requirements. It is imperative to take note of the details from the existing spaces during survey while also considering how to transform the built environment to reflect the ideals and brand identity of a facility. By honing in on the details, we can devise knowledge-based design strategies and solutions to deliver truly extraordinary experiences. We can demonstrate the efficacy of this approach using one of our existing Healthcare design projects.
Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, Somerset, one of our on-going clients, favors a traditional and refined aesthetic and leads with a functional mindset. Using the concept of layered design, we developed a strategic plan for their four-phased, masterplan renovation that would offer both maximum functionality and optimal patient comfort. We worked closely with the medical staff and construction team to elicit a design that would be sustainable and conform to the facility’s standards of safety and quality care. On top of that foundation, we applied modern furniture, a fresh color palette and durable material finishes. Centralized storage, state of the art technology for patient monitoring, and integral focal lighting seamlessly brought the space together.
As a firm that specializes in interior design, we believe that it is important to adhere to a systematic, thoughtful and layered process from start to finish that will look beyond the physical space and tend to all details, big and small.
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