Note Design Studio creates colorful interiors for Douglas House

Note Design Studio, based in Stockholm, used neutral colors and bright contrasting hues to reinvigorate the interiors of the Douglas House office building in London.


Note Design Studio designed the Douglas House office space, which has 700 offices spread over six floors, for the office developer The office group (TOG). He had previously designed the Summit House property for the company.

Note Design Studio used natural materials and vibrant colors for the interiors of Douglas House

The Swedish studio aimed to “break the grid” of the 14,235 square meter 1930s office building, which features a vertical layout and red brick facade.

“As a building, Douglas House is very ‘rational’ in its architecture,” designer Jesper Mellgren told Dezeen. “Even though it extended quite far horizontally, it was vertical in its structure and its space program.”

Yellow bedroom with terrazzo furniture at Douglas House
Contemporary designer brand pieces are used throughout the space

“We realized very early on that we wanted to ‘break the grid’ of the building and offer a less predictable interior than you would expect from the industrial look of the facade,” he added.

“It was also linked to a more abstract idea of ​​breaking the conformity of our daily life, of designing a place that shakes you up a bit when entering for your work day.”

Tiled floor with Klein blue chairs and plants at Douglas House
The studio focused on how the space would make users feel

While many office spaces are designed to improve productivity, Note Design Studio said Douglas House is more focused on creating the right feeling and the right ambiance.

To create a space that, in the studio’s words, would bring a “soft punch” to office design, he used contrasting colors and materials throughout the space.

“The palette ranges from deep ochres to vivid light blues, through calm chalk tones, vibrant reds and vivid blues,” said designer Charlotte Ackemar.

Blue meeting room with glass wall
Meeting rooms are painted in calm shades of blue

The studio aimed to keep as much of the original detail as possible, but had to replace a lot of materials in poor condition. However, the original parquet floors have been lifted, renovated and put back in place.

“We have worked to give the building a more defined character by using materials that will live with the building itself for a long time,” Ackemar said.

Curvilinear glass wall
A curvilinear glass wall connects the main spaces and adds privacy to the meeting rooms

A curvilinear glass brick wall has been added to the ground floor to connect its three main public spaces.

“It stretches across the entire building, giving a spatial richness to the promenade between the different functions of the ground floor as well as a vivid backdrop enhanced by the activity of the meeting rooms which are blurred throughout. glass blocks, ”Mellgren explained.

“The curve also creates unique footprints for the meeting rooms and the three common areas, which with a straight wall would have been more or less identical in terms of space.”

Sustainable materials and red chairs at Douglas House
Materials such as ceramic tiles were chosen for their durability

Other materials used for the project were chosen for their durability, as office buildings suffer significant wear and tear and reuse. They include steel, glass and ceramic tiles, as well as 100% recyclable Tarkett IQ plastic wall and floor coverings.

Douglas House also received solar panels and a biodiversity green roof to further improve its sustainability credentials.

Reception desk veneered in Ettore Sottsass Alpi veneer in blue
Douglas House reception has a desk clad in Ettore Sottsass veneer

Note Design Studio has also added a number of design touches to the interior, including an Ettore Sottsass veneer reception desk for Alpi in a striking blue-gray color, and pieces from brands such as Artrex and Muller van Severen in bright hues.

Newly commissioned pieces from artists and designers, including Jenny Nordberg, Jochen holz, Wang & Söderström, Philipp Schenk-Mischke, James shaw, Studio Mijo and Studio In addition also fill the building.

Glazed meeting room
Pale blue chairs contrast with beige tiles and dark wood

The Douglas house also includes an “oxygen room” – a space filled with plants where the idea is that workers can relax and connect with nature, the “recharge room”, a gym, a cafe. and a mothers room dedicated to nursing mothers.

“We worked with the whole building and designed big or small things on every square meter basically,” Ackemar said. “A lot of office spaces are laid out in the same way, but public and communal spaces all have their unique design attributes. “

Yellow ceramic tiles and gray countertop
Earthy and warm hues create a welcoming atmosphere

Douglas House has 700 offices for over 1,000 employees and opened in November 2020. Note Design Studio believes the final design succeeded in creating a different kind of office space.

“From our perspective it differs on many levels – it has a lot more expression than what you normally see in an office space, a variety of rhythms and functions allowing people to choose what suits them best. better that day, ”said designer Johannes Carlström. .

Other recent studio projects include the pastel colored interiors of Mantelpiece Loft in Stockholm and a reusable exhibition stand for Vestre.

Photography is courtesy of The office group.


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Joseph E. Golightly