06 · 17 · 2019
Neocon 2019 Review
What a great time at Neocon! Our design and marketing team gained valuable insight to the industry and the new and upcoming products. All of the showrooms were well done; the amount of detail put into setting them up was impressive and really gave them a lived in, resi-mercial feel that was inspiring. Modular telephone booths/rooms and height adjustable workstations were a big theme this year – all different styles with a multitude of finish options and individual customizations. It was great to truly experience the furniture that we are constantly viewing online or in catalogs and really get a feel for the quality, comfort, and aesthetics. Sometimes the simplest pieces of furniture have the most thought and technology behind it.
One of the takeaways was how to integrate the story in the process when creating a space. Every design, product, company, or designer has a story. Whether it’s designing spaces or marketing a product or service, consumers want the experience and want to know the story behind the design or designer. In a society driven by technology, we can lose authenticity and human interaction. It’s incredibly important to stay up to date with the latest technology for productivity and efficiency, but not at the expense of losing the human touch. Finding the balance is key. Even the most subtle cues of branding can create a big impact, you don’t need to showcase a large logo on a space to understand the company brand. You can lead the conversations in the design of the space, but you want your guests to live in that environment, and tell the story to others.
Everyone wants to be able to connect to their work environment and feel that the space is authentic, energizing, uplifting, inviting so that they want to come into the office. The more robotic it is, the less they will feel that they can make a difference. They need a sense of place and human experience. Technology will continue to advance; don’t lose the human aspects and needs in the process. The importance of authenticity really allows consumers to connect and align themselves with the brand and become part of the story. Authenticity allows them to integrate into the past and become a part of its future.
Another takeaway was how the workplace circulation has changed and the adjustments we need to make to create spaces to match this. The workplace is changing dramatically and at an excessive rate– the way in which we calculate circulation regarding programming must change as well. We can no longer use 20th century guidelines in the 21st century.
Workplace acoustics and stress recovery is another significant factor to consider in any design. It’s no secret that work can be stressful. However, recovering from those moments are key. Today, we spend about 90% of our time indoors which puts even more importance on a great design plan for companies. Reducing noise and unwanted stimuli allows employees to focus on their responsibilities and tasks. Obvious right? Unfortunately, most spaces today aren’t designed with these ideals in mind.
Lighting is essential. But good lighting is critical and can create a domino effect. If occupants are happier, their character and moods enhanced which increases their productivity. It is a return on the investment; create proper lighting – get better results. So much goes into the thought process of choosing what lighting is right for what space: emotional responses, light levels, color temperature choices, uniformity ratios, code compliance, balancing of the space utilization and layering. Some areas require softer lighting, while others may need sunlight or something equivalent.
Color can really transform any space. Learning about the upcoming trends and how they’re influenced was another valuable aspect of NeoCon. Nature, fashion, architecture, and culture are some factors that play into these trends. The world around us impacts design every day, most of our inspiration and color ideas can be found in some of the simplest things that we see on a regular basis but may not even realize. To name a few, these color pallets reference this idea: Exo-planet, which is the more gentle neutral shades that act as a buffer between the outside and inside. Domestic is pastels that are in between the past and present – Neither classic nor modern and remind us of childhood favorites. Pod is mysterious metallic purple mixes with lilac – Straddles nature and science.
Neocon was an amazing experience; we acquired many insightful takeaways and saw great designs and products. We are very excited to start incorporating the learnings in our work and designs and look forward to next year!