Furniture can be one of the largest expenses when completing a fitout. Scared?!

Without the right furniture advice on a commercial fitout project, I see all too often, furniture selections being left till last. Of course, this is when the client is at the skinny end of the budget and selections are sacrificed. Cheap and nasty selections have no place in commercial fitouts. We all know you get what you pay for and sacrificing comfort or functionality isn’t worth it!

To avoid this problem, the way I like to work is to select your key furniture items initially in the concept design and then plan the spaces around these. It could be some funky modular ottomans or a contemporary collaborative pod. Doing it this way will result in what everyone strives for… an overall cohesive space. Your space will be the talk of the town!

An interior designer is the best person to help you with your furniture selections. (And that would be me of course!) They will ensure all items selected will not only be fit for purpose and but also FIT within the space you have! How many times have you bought a furniture item for home, thought ‘yep that will fit’ and then it doesn’t! Doh! Space can be so deceiving!

Ok so if I haven’t stressed enough, furniture is so important to get right! Not only does the right furniture dictate the look and feel of an interior but has a huge impact in the way which people use and interact with the space.

Open plan, co-working and collaboration is in the ‘now’ for the Millennials. Within this environment furniture can be used strategically to combat distraction and create private zones which many ‘open-planners’ crave.

Below I’ve created a handy list of items to think about if you are brave enough to take on this task solo without the help of an interior designer:

  • Purpose – Why this item?
  • Function – How will the space be used?
  • Budget – How much do you have to spend?
  • Users – What is your demographic profile of end users? Any special requirements?
  • Style – What kind of look & feel are you trying to achieve?
  • Wow Factor – Any focal or key areas needing a statement?
  • Maintenance – Fabric properties required? Stain resistant, etc? Do you have a regular cleaning rescheme?
  • Location – Do the items need to be waterproof, UV resistant, etc?
  • Ergonomics – Fit for purpose and comfortable?

I hope that’s of some help to you!

The right furniture should leave the end users feeling inspired, focused and free to do their best work.

Oh and one last thing, as much as you may like a piece of furniture, it may not be practical for the application. Don’t let your style or taste be an influence!

If you need some help selecting the right furniture for your project, I’d love to hear from you.

Stefney Schultz
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