There’s a new project in the hizouse, y’all. It involves some risky colors, shimmery wallpaper, and general ‘over the top-ery’ … with restraint. You all may have heard of Ban.do, the design house in LA that makes these kinda addictive (and often hilarious) gifts and accessories:
Well, they moved into a much larger office and Jen approached me about working with her to design it. When Jen says jump, you say ‘how high and also may we drink champagne while jumping?’.
So I wrote up our story to create a brief/deck to show potential press and partners (Jen’s team designed it):
Yup. When I first moved here from New York I had no styling clients. I had followed Jen’s blog and reached out to her to get some insight on the styling world in LA. We hit it off immediately and she pretty much gave me a lot of clients and connections. I was VERY, VERY, VERY grateful, but not sure how to repay her … until now. Our resources are tight around here, but I REALLY wanted to do this project and I don’t say no to things that I really want.
So Ginny, Brady ad I are redesigning their new space and having a very good time at it, indeed. Here’s a moodboard that she sent me for inspiration:
How does this translate into a functioning office?
Exactly … Therein lies my challenge. Luckily Jen is a total visionary and I speak visionary … well I understand when visionaries speak to me, anyway. Moving from stylist to designer (like I have) has its pros and cons – as a designer you get a tiny bit stuck on function/livability and your ‘process’ that you’ve honed really well. As a stylist your job is really just to make a space look really $%&*ing inspiring and then maybe also ‘well designed’ if you can fit it in the shot. Creating inspiration is what I used to care about and my first few home design clients kinda suffered because of it. I, Emily Henderson, do care a lot about comfort and function as much as style these days. So we are marrying our skills – she tells me to do something weird and I figure out how to turn that idea into something that makes sense for an office. I need a little bit of Jen in my life these days – someone to push me into worlds that I’m uncomfortable. And right now I’m comfortably uncomfortable.
Yeah, of course – put that in a functioning office where 5 girls and one male CEO create 4 lines of fashion and accessories a year. Its like I get it, but I’m also befuddled.
So, here is what the space looked like before they moved in:
It’s a wonderful blank canvas. The walls are white, the floors are wood, the light is strong and the layout is open. Wonderful. Check , check, check, check and check.
So, we met, measured, brainstormed, shopped, pinned and began the redesign. Our goal was to make it feel like the mood boards up there, but more functional for the creative team that works in there 50 hours a week.
Naturally I started hoarding sets of vintage chairs from vintage stores and Craigslist. We have lucite and brass happening. Shocking, I know.
And then I brought their sofa over (yes, from the Matchbook shoot) and we went to sample fabrics for the different sets of chairs after we saw them all together. We’ve got pale and candy colored velvets and linens galore. Decisions were made, excitement is felt. These chairs don’t even KNOW whats about to happen to them.
Not all of those fabrics made the cut, and you might be shocked at what is deemed as successful. How very cryptic, I know.
So that’s the new Ban.do creative office project. We are trying to get done by mid-July and things are moving along. Wallpaper is chosen, fabric is chosen, desks/chairs are purchased, and the big concepts have been pounded out … with the help of some champagne brunches and flea market shopping.
It’s incredibly fun doing a creative studio space because you can take more risks, grab onto trends more, worry less about it livability and more about it being inspirational. There are no kids involved; there is not a comfy tv room that needs an overstuffed sectional. This project is all about 5 girls needing to be in a space that inspires them to create pieces and a brand that are going to bring them to the next level in the fashion/design world.
No pressure, right?