• Featured,  Form,  Print Edition

    Hospitality by healthcare

    “Design is a practical practice. There is a misconception that interior designers come up with creative ideas and make things happen almost magically, but that is not the case at all. A good design is very thoughtful,” said Kathryn Chaplow, interior designer and owner of Kathryn Chaplow LLC in Grand Rapids, Michigan.  Kathryn Chaplow LLC is an interior design firm specializing in both residential and commercial markets for new construction and remodel work. Chaplow, a practicing designer of more than 20 years, and her studio team were tapped early on when it came to the Bengston Center for Aesthetics and Plastic Surgery in Grand Rapids—along with AMDG Architects Inc., First…

  • Creative Endeavors,  Featured

    Crafted collection

    Room & Board, the iconic Minneapolis-based furnishings designer, throughout the years has pulled inspiration from revived design movements like Arts and Crafts, and Shaker styles as it creates furniture with tried-and-true design principles reinterpreted for modern living, as well as commercial markets.  Its residential offerings range from mattresses and ottomans to wall clocks and chandeliers, and they also contain conscientious initiatives like The Urban Wood Project—a partnership with the United States Department of Agriculture, or USDA, that sources urban harvested, reclaimed wood—and a general preference for working with small artisanal and business outfits to bring designs to life. The firm also has a branch dedicated to commercial interior furnishings, called…

  • Creative Endeavors,  Featured

    Navigating what’s next

    State leaders are in the process of lifting restrictions imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic, prompting businesses of all kinds to rework their strategies for physically inhabiting workspace, as quickly as they had to initially shutter their doors. In Grand Rapids, Michigan, workspace furnishing leader Steelcase Inc. and its family of brands—which include Coalesse, Turnstone, and Designtex, among others—started that strategizing process long ago and have been publishing guides and advice for reworking the workspace to reflect the unique new needs of employees and staff members returning to work. In the firm’s April edition of the guide Navigating What’s Next: The Post-COVID Workplace, it shares strategies that can help organizations navigate…

  • Creative Endeavors,  Featured

    NeoConnect

    Since 1969, NeoCon has punctuated each June with its eagerly awaited, three-day showcase of all things cutting-edge design in the commercial interiors industry. International design enthusiasts and design firms—specializing in everything from workplace textiles to ergonomic tech gadgets—converge in Chicago for three days of robust educational programming, informative and engaging keynote presentations from industry leaders, and the latest innovations and emerging talent in the industry.  Though this summer’s NeoCon has been cancelled, returning to Chicago in 2021, its organizers have filled its space with a content-rich virtual hub that will connect the design community for the entire month of June 2020, and beyond. The interactive online platform, called NeoConnect, launches…

  • Creative Endeavors,  Featured

    Pulse on design

    As economic, social, and industrial shifts presented by the coronavirus pandemic continue to impact the design profession and its many facets, professionals across the country and the entities that organize them are also adapting. In a special survey series launched March 31, 2020 by the American Society of Interior Designers, or ASID, many interior designers, in particular, have shown an optimism for the future of the profession and a willingness to adapt alongside the pandemic.  The bi-weekly, industry-wide “pulse survey” series seeks to identify issues interior design businesses and professionals are experiencing in close to real time, across four census regions of the United States: West, South, Northeast, and Midwest.…

  • Creative Endeavors,  Featured

    Infusion showrooms

    For plumbing products distributor ETNA Supply Company, headquartered in Grand Rapids, Michigan, brainstorming and selecting the various plumbing fixtures needed for residential or commercial design projects are anything but dull. Faucets one can talk to, in-wall water filtration, instant hot or cold sparkling water—these are just some of the abilities of products offered by Infusion by ETNA for designers, contractors, plumbers, and others to creatively utilize one of the most important natural resources.  ETNA Supply and Infusion by ETNA have been in place since 1965 to curate and circulate the latest and greatest advancements and trends in plumbing—decorative and unseen—to hit the market, and its work can be found in…

  • Creative Endeavors,  Featured

    Mask makers

    In this unprecedented time, major players and smaller participants in a variety of Midwest industries have set their attention on an invaluable product: the face masks with which many are protecting themselves against COVID-19. Brands, from General Motors to the Milwaukee Bucks, have launched mask-making initiatives to supply the consumer market that continues to grow in need, nearly as quickly as it is satiated.  Alongside national corporations, volunteer efforts among local sewing enthusiasts and crafters have also amassed into a sweeping grassroots effort to provide friends, families, communities, and those on the frontlines of the pandemic with the personal protective equipment they need. Many of these efforts also come with…

  • Featured,  Form

    Vision, incorporated

    With its comprehensive redesign and modern, sophisticated material finishes, a commercial architectural project in Grandville, Michigan, by Mathison | Mathison Architects, has helped reorganize and unify a more than 70-year-old technological brand in the area and its triad of business entities within one transformed building.  The companies, comprising Van Dyken Mechanical Inc., Grand Valley Automation Inc., and Mechanical Testing Services Inc., operate in an approximately 35,000-square-foot building and frequently collaborate on projects, though their interior workspaces were dated, shut away from natural light, and left each entity without a defined visual brand. At the time of a recent ownership change, it was decided that the building either needed to be…

  • Featured,  Form

    Tower work 

    When heading south along the eastern banks of the Scioto Greenways trail toward the Scioto Mile Promenade in downtown Columbus, a structure clad in Imperial Red granite and bronze-tone glass comes into view set back from the Scioto River’s edge. Nestled into the built landscape, the 1984-built, approximately one-million-square-foot building soars about 512 feet into the air and is visually flanked by the Art Deco-inspired beacon of LeVeque Tower and the Vern Riffe State Office Tower along the urban trail.  Developed by Hines a Texas-based privately owned global real estate investment, development, and management firm, and designed by the architectural firm of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP, or SOM, in…