Design, Interior Design, Project, Uncategorized
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The “Brilliant” Office Redesign

**New project klaxon**

I’m not bigging myself up with the blog post title here, it’s the name of the company i’m currently working with; Brilliant Social Media. This time last year I was working on my very first commercial sized project with Visibilis, remember the one with the geometric wall?

Nearly a year later, i’m onto my second. Brilliant are based at Mabgate business centre, a very understated but pretty cool industrial building built in 1890 as a textile mill.

Mabgate Business Centre

The building has recently undergone four years of restoration and refurbishment, now providing affordable work spaces with “a modern work environment for young companies”. Based just on the periphery of Leeds city centre, it’s an excellent location.

Mabgate Business Centre

It’s all pretty nice in here. Exposed brick walls, high ceilings, large windows and lots of light. All of the office spaces have been decorated and carpeted ready for their new tenants. Here’s an example below:

Mabgate Business Centre

They’re great rooms, but quite formal. Brilliant who are clearly a very creative team of peeps wanted to stamp their mark on their generous open plan work space. Cue me.

My plan:

The Brilliant office has actually been made up of what was three individual offices. Walls were taken down and all that jazz. So my job was to tighten up the layout, clearly define the 17m long open plan space and give the whole room a cohesive look.

Here’s what we’ve done… so far…

The Meeting Zone

A 2.5 x 3.5m rug was needed here to define this space, the Ikea STOCKHOLM rug was the perfect choice and also the most cost effective way of introducing the simple monochrome scheme to the rest of the room.

The wall behind the TV will be painted black pretty soon to disguise the TV when not in use and add more of a backdrop to the beautiful new meeting table. The purple wall is staying. Mainly because it’s 17m long and nearly 3m high. But it actually looks pretty cool next to the black and white set up.

Monochrome and natural materials

This combo sits so well in this space. It’s clean, unfussy and compliments the brands branding colours and logo perfectly.

My awesome joiners worked their socks off making this awesome OSB desktop. It sits on the table legs taken from their previous meeting table which was way too small for a) this space and b) the team to all sit at.

How beautiful is this?

My love of OSB is no secret, in fact I made my own desk from the stuff last year. You can read all about that over here.

Brilliant work with several brands and they needed places to display and highlight their brand’s product lines. I designed two modular shelving units to house everything which can expand as and when needed.

Plants will be another key feature of the overall design. As much greenery as possible please, the bigger the better too.

Just incase you’re wondering, that OSB is smooth as a babies bottom, it’s all been sanded back to a soft, splinter free finish.

Here’s the view from the other end. These guys already had two Ikea KLIPPAN sofas which we kept but swapped the corporate looking grey covers for black ones. A simple and cost effective (£70 for two covers) update which made a big difference. The LAPPLJUNG RUTA rug and cushions were purchased to zone the break-out area with another striking monochrome design.

The old desk top that once sat in the meeting area was cut down to provide a coffee table top.

My joiners added some salvaged metal legs (??) to the the new table top. Some weird springy things they found at a farm or something. Whatever they are, it looks pretty awesome dunit!

An OSB breakfast bar/standing desk was designed and built in to house the small kitchen area on the left and to provide more informal work space. The two boxed wall shelves, built for cups, jars and the like are still to be fixed to the wall.

Brilliant’s long term plan is to rid the space of desks altogether at some point, wanting the look of more fluid, transitional work space. A couple of stools will be added here in due course.

Three Ikea RANARP lights and more plants provide light and fresh air along this side of the room. Plant pots on their way.

The elephant in the room? Yes, he’s called Rosso. There is literally no reason why he is here, but the room wouldn’t quite be the same without him would it? I can’t take credit for Rosso but my joiners built this plinth for him to stand on. And doesn’t he look handsome on his astroturf? Green is definitely his colour.

So that’s where we are so far. Still to go:

  • Entrance area
  • Coat hooks
  • Black wall
  • Stools
  • Large monochrome circular rug (anyone? They’re not an easy find!)
  • Room divide
  • Side table
  • More plants
  • Artwork
  • Faffing
  • Window seats

What do you think? Fancy an elephant at home? And, hands up who’d like an OSB table top!



  1. Sandra says

    Love your practical style … design isn’t about spending zillions.

  2. Lesley says

    I must admit I had no idea what OSB was I had to look it up; is this the new MDF! The table is fantastic and the cubes, love what’s been done so far, what a great place to work in, good luck with the elusive monochrome rug.

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