We are celebrating a great 2018 with a healthy list of new customers and suppliers. The ten-year recovery from the 2007-2008 recession was a challenge, but we are proud to have weathered that crisis and are starting year two of a three-year strategic plan to grow and create a sustainable interior design business.
Last year we added Megan Hoekzema, Interior Designer, and Stacey Udell, Office Administrator to the team. We joined Local First, volunteered at Mackenzie’s Animal Sanctuary and donated our design time to Living Stones Academy helping them improve their multipurpose room and staff lounge.
We reference The Right Place’s 2019 Economic Outlook report to get a sense of what our community might experience ahead. As a tiny company, we would like to think we can be resilient to most economic shifts, and we describe ourselves as “small but mighty”. But along with that, we want to add “smart” so we have our heads up regarding our economy.
While the West Michigan marketplace needs to pay attention to the impact of tariffs, trade agreements, interest rate hikes, and changes in leadership in Lansing, the ongoing issues of talent shortage and the reality that every company needs to do more with fewer people.
Grand Rapids continues to lead the state (and the nation) in post-recession recovery.
The president of The Right Place, Birgit Klohs, is our customer and when asked, she summarized about the future, “2018 was a banner year, 2019 isn’t going to be quite as good. Read more here.
Rapid Growth Media’s article “Michigan’s Corporate Construction Continues to Grow into 2019” reports that West Michigan contractors have the largest backlog of business since 2000. “If the world stopped today, construction employers would have 9.8 months of work left to do.” And since contractors are r.o.i. Design’s #1 customer, we are pleased to hear this news.
For us 2019 will mean:
New staff, we are currently looking to hire a design lead. This person will help develop new business, lead the design direction of projects they develop and add perspective and energy to our group as we look to grow.
A year ago, we thought we needed to add staff to be able to provide us with rendering and illustration talent, but our Creative Executive Ryan Bright has risen to the challenge, growing in skills and managing out-sourced talent to meet our needs. We see adding more rendering services as part of the tool kit.
Our work in medical and dental offices continues to look strong. We have multi-family projects scheduled through 2020. Our window covering and solar shade business is growing. We have installed two projects with more than 100 windows within a few months of each other. Congratulations to Purchasing and Procurement Manager, Ronda Geyer.
We will be looking at our technology needs this year and anticipate making an investment in software and hardware.
Our physical sample library needs to shrink, as more and more resources are “online”. We rely on our sales representatives to help us with “just in time sampling”. Megan continues to manage our library and representatives in the effort to stay on top of the newest and best materials.
Our strategic plan has us revising processes and procedures, focusing on marketing and sales, and company culture.
We continue to be driven to “making a difference” in the lives of our customers and in our community.
The last layer of interior design includes wall art and r.o.i. Design has learned planning for meaningful wall décor has incredible influence on how the space impacts employees, customers, and guests.
It is an opportunity to support a company’s brand, communicate values and goals, as well as add aesthetic interest.
For Wolverine Power Cooperative in Cadillac, Michigan we worked with them to create an assemblage of their customer logos using a cable system to suspend the logos. This brought a sense of pride to staff and board members as they passed by. In the same project, we created a custom wood “service map”, that outlined where they provided power; but the map was interesting as “art” in addition to telling a story. They also asked us to help them create a “word wall” using words that describe how they want to be perceived. We created a graphic and then had it printed on vinyl wallcovering.
For multi-family developer Eagle Point Properties, they like the common areas of their projects to have photos and imagery that represents the location of the residences. For downtown Grand Rapids we found historic photos of landmarks and purchased the rights to print those photos. For their project in Virginia, close to Washington D.C., we featured the architecture and landscapes that describe this region, rich in American history.
Hutchinson North America built 616 FAB House in Grand Rapids in 2016. This space serves as a gathering and meeting space but is surrounded by displays and imagery that demonstrates their tradition of innovation. Working with them and their Paris, France associates, we selected historic images and arranged them throughout the space similar to a museum exhibit. In the same space, were close up details of machinery and operations of the past alongside robotic demonstrations of current technology.
Wall art and décor can be personal, and any effort we made to create custom wall art programs have resulted in positive “returns”.
Do you ever wonder how those cool loft-type condos suddenly seem to emerge as if they had always been there? The answer is they are the result of years of planning, a developer’s vision and commitment, a great piece of historic real estate, and a team that knows how to put it all together.
r.o.i. Design is lucky enough to be on one of these teams, and we are so excited to be part of making RiverView Flats in historic Lowell, Michigan a dream come true for 14 home owners.
Todd Schaal and Jerry Zandstra have come together as developers to create this opportunity. They want to create homes in the former “car barn” of Unity Middle School along the picturesque Flat River. This building is complete with vintage masonry, tall ceilings, and spectacular views.
r.o.i. Design takes on the roles of interior design and marketing, as we work to set the stage for some creative living.
For more about RiverView Flats, we have attached some of the marketing materials we have created that describes the look, the feel, the layouts, and finish options. Download them here:
“Your Home for Compassionate Service and Exceptional Care” is the phrase used by the team at West Michigan Dermatology to describe their practice. It is with that in mind that First Companies set out to fulfill their needs for two new locations. Craig Baker from First Companies reached out to r.o.i. Design for interiors and to r2Design for architecture to create the designs for their new Holland and Grandville locations.
The new Holland location was just a move “across the street”, but the new space feels much refreshed. The desire for a residential “cottage feel” resulted in an interior that includes painted millwork, decorative light fixtures, as well as a feature stone veneer wall. Furnishings also reflected a feeling of hospitality. All clinic and exam areas were designed for comfort and medical excellence.
The layout gave West Michigan Dermatology the convenience of exam rooms with two doors. One allows patients to enter from the lobby side, and the other for staff to enter from the clinical side. With a variety of procedures from skin care to surgery, this layout fosters privacy and a professional separation for the maximum comfort of patients.
While r.o.i. Design was fond of many aspects of the interior, the color scheme of black, white, grey, and blue was one of the most satisfying elements.
Kudos to First Companies project manager, Jason Beekes, and to architect, Jon Blair, for their expertise and focus. We wish West Michigan Dermatology in Holland great success in their new home.
Gone are the days of one ruling color. Forecasters and color experts alike are suggesting we are going to see a range of colors rising to popularity this year.
r.o.i. Design sees the significance to this year’s forecast to be a further departure from grays and moving more towards browns. And while commercial interiors lag the residential interior trends, they always do follow. We have already seen a broad acceptance by our office clients of warmer grays that could be taupe, and much more willing to see shades of brown as accents. We also resonate with the projected trend of more complex blues for interiors.
But what do the experts say?
Pantone has been a ranking authority, but r.o.i. Design also pays attention to our favorite paint companies opinions, Sherwin Williams and Benjamin Moore.
While Pantone has announced Living Coral as their “Color of the Year”, they are also suggesting two general palettes that are going to be widely used. One is called the Cravings Pallete and the other the Classico collection.
From Coastal Living’s article, “Trend Alert! These Will Be the Hottest Colors for Homes in 2019”:
The “Cravings” palette, according to Pantone, includes allusions to “fetish foods”—from rich Butterum and Cappuccino to spicy Chili Pepper and Cayenne. The hues will “draw upon memorable sensory experiences to inspire new ones that will be just as pleasing.”
Pantone Classico Palette
There’s also a Classico collection of 8 hues that includes Rich Gold, Mallard Blue, and Apricot Brandy. According to Pantone, “the colors are “fundamental, basic, and everlasting, while at the same time, elegant and forever fashionable.” With hues that pay a subtle homage to sunsets, sand, and sea, that’s certainly true on the coast.
For your personal research, here are a few articles to get you started:
We are thrilled to reveal our new website that provides an updated look and easy viewing on handheld devices.
Our new look streamlines our story and hopefully makes our site easier to navigate. While there are many important features of the site, our portfolio and our blogs are a huge resource in our marketing efforts.
A huge shout-out to Ryan Bright, our Creative Executive, who managed the project along with the help of contracted media expert Nahshon Cook.