There are many interior spaces that are designed specifically for kids. Schools, pediatric dental and medical offices, daycare facilities, and indoor play areas are just a few examples. These places want to feel welcoming to a child and engage their senses. Spaces should be entertaining while also sparking imagination and interest.
So what makes a successful interior design for kids? It is certainly more than just using primary colors or a lot of cartoon characters. Typically, it is important to create a lot of interest. Interesting flooring patterns and interesting ceilings draw a child’s eyes throughout the space. Instead of large, child-themed murals, blocks of color and graphics help the interiors feel fun, without exhausting the parents or staff.
It is important for some places to also feel professional, especially when it comes to pediatric dental and medical offices. Kids need to feel safe and welcome here, but parents want to be assured that these are serious practices as well. These places also need to function efficiently, and be easily maintainable.
r.o.i. Design has created numerous interiors for children. We have some clues on how this audience reacts to spaces. We know they see color differently than adults and appreciate any tactile detail.
More info on some of our recent work for children:
It’s no secret that most people do not look forward to going to the dentist – an important thing to keep in mind when designing dental offices. A pleasant, warm and soothing environment is key when selecting interior finishes for lobbies and patient areas. “The goal is to make the patient feel comfortable and welcome”, says r.o.i. Design’s Stacey Udell.
With more and more dentists retiring and new graduates taking over practices, r.o.i. has been busy working with local docs to update and refresh their spaces. Functional work areas allowing for ease of patient flow are top on the list, along with coffee bars and cozy and low-maintenance furnishings in lobbies. Creative and fun areas where kids feel safe are also a high priority. To help reduce sounds, some offices have “clouds” of acoustical panels, lighting or architectural elements that are hung from high ceilings to alleviate unwanted noise and are also visually appealing.
r.o.i. Design collaborates with dental equipment and supply companies to give dentists a wide range of options. We also offer lobby furniture, décor and wall art to “dress up” the space, and window covering options (along with installation) with practical solutions for dealing with sunlight while allowing for patient comfort.
Whether it’s remodeling an existing practice or a new build, our methods and problem-solving skills produce outcomes that are based on budget, brand, and beauty.
r.o.i. Design has a heart for the community, education, and kids. Every year we dedicate some of our time to non-profits whose goals match our own vision as we strive to make a difference in the lives of those we touch.
We have been investing in Living Stones Academy since 2016, when our friend Aaron Winkle, Head of School, reached out for support. Aaron’s request was coupled by the endorsement of Marlin Feyen, founding partner of Feyen Zylstra Electric. He showed us their vision to be radically inclusive and absolutely accessible, which struck a chord with us.
Since our involvement, we have provided design and direction for finishes in their new lunch program kitchen and related corridor, their gymnasium, and the teachers’ lounge. In each case, we took into consideration the 70’s style of the architecture that boasted a modern style and blocks of colors.
The largest of those projects was the gym. We created a design that included acoustic panels so it could be more effective as a presentation space, allowing the audience to hear more clearly. Perhaps the most rewarding was the redesign of the teacher’s lounge. Old fixtures were retired and a new friendly space was delivered that the teachers can use as a retreat from their classrooms.
We look forward to Living Stones continued success as they serve their families, of which 56% receive tuition assistance, 52% are minorities, and 15% are English language learners.
So much more than runny noses, vaccinations, bumps and scrapes, a pediatric practice is a sophisticated business that manages the physical, behavioral and mental health issues for newborns through teenagers. There are lots of challenges, so the office design needs to create an environment that offers some efficiency and some fun.
r.o.i. Design learned so much working with ABC Pediatrics as we helped them with the interior design of their new offices in Wyoming, MI. We learned how they wanted to engage families with their interiors, but not be just “kid-like”. They wanted their space to look professional and simple, but very welcoming and comfortable. They needed it to be user friendly for staff and family which meant maintainable surfaces and easily identifiable areas. And there was a budget.
ABC Pediatrics Lobby
Starting with a color scheme that they currently use in their Walker location, r.o.i. Design “upped the ante” by intensifying some of the colors, adding pattern and interest, in thoughtful ways. Some of our favorite elements are the carpet accents, the color accents, the decorative lighting and the lobby furniture. Wall art will soon be added to the interior and we like those selections as well.
Interior corridor at ABC Pediatrics.
ABC Pediatrics also asked us to create a new logo for their practice. They wanted a logo that was as updated as their offices were, but more importantly, a representation of their brand. Interviewing them about how they viewed their distinctive difference, we came away with “Caring”, “Diverse” (ages and specialties), and “Child Centered”. They were very pleased with their new business logo designed by Ryan Bright, Creative Executive at r.o.i. Design.
ABC Pediatrics’ new logo.
More about designing for kids
r.o.i. Design has designed for younger audiences before so we had some clues on how this audience reacts to spaces. We know they see color differently than adults and appreciate any tactile detail. For more on our recent work for younger people please visit our page on Black River Schools and Northern Michigan Pediatric Dentistry.
More about ABC Pediatrics
Having outgrown their offices in Grandville, ABC decided to build a building that would be large enough to accommodate their expected growth of families from the south west side of Grand Rapids. Architect-at-Large created the footprint, and Pinnacle Construction was engaged to build the building, and when ABC inquired about interior design, Pinnacle recommended us for the assignment.
It is never too late to go back to school. r.o.i. Design has been working with Robert Doornbos at RMD Architects, creating interiors for some of the charter schools he has designed in the last year.
Our experience with Charter Schools teaches us that they appear to have highly passionate teams, with high academic goals for a focused community population. They care deeply about how their school environment looks and feels, and based on available budget, really want to make their spaces “A+”
Black River Charter School, Holland, MI
This is where we met RMD Architects. The board engaged us to work alongside him and the board, to assist in the selection and coordination of finishes. This is also a Montessori school which had a criteria that all the finishes be calm, orderly and like home. Our favorite detail in this project was the accenting of the carpet in the classrooms to aid in organizing space for “lining up”, or just calling out areas. There were three color schemes, one for kindergarten, one for lower elementary and one for upper elementary.
Culturally, this school wanted to embrace a global diversity and to make sure the interior could appeal to wide variety of students and families. Our favorite details here was the use of colors that we described as global cuisine, colors that naturally resonated with people as rich and flavorful: Eggplant, Saffron, Palm and Tomato. Then we used those colors in classic patterns in flooring and walls. Those patterns could be traced back to civilization 2000 years ago and could be seen just as decoration, or teaching tools. Through the course of the design we were informed that James Brown went to school in Macon, GA so we wanted to make sure everyone would “feel good”!
This project was a design-build project lead by Triangle Inc. in Grand Rapids, MI.
Northeast Academy, Minneapolis, MN
This community was growing quickly and expanding its program. They were moving into a larger school that needed to be refreshed, remodeled and delivered in less than five months. They moved in August 20, 2016! Our efforts focused on carpet and paint. Northeast wanted all the corridors to be carpeted and because there was little opportunity for other areas of interest, we created three to four modular carpet patterns that we repeated in different color ways. We also created tile patterns for entries and cafeteria. They will be remodeling another floor in the coming year, and hopefully, we will be able to go back and execute some wall accents and graphics as well.
Shannon Orthodontics prides itself on its use of the latest research and technology and delivers an extremely friendly service. They want their customers to “achieve the smile they have always dreamed of”.
Shannon’s business practice far out-shown the interior of their offices. They wanted to deliver a complete experience, so Tom Shannon and wife Kate researched other offices in the area and found our work at JCL Periodontics. Tom and Kate liked the character and personality we brought to that space and after initial meetings decided to engage us in the redesign of their Grandville office.
Their newly designed offices were officially complete in July 2015 and the transformation is very satisfying to the Shannon team and to r.o.i. Design. Thank you to Rockford Trades for managing the remodel while they stayed open. It looks great!
Highlights of the design include:
Flexible lobby seating creating greater capacity through use of backless benches.
New decorative and in-ceiling LED lighting for a crisper look and far more efficient energy use.
All new finishes, including modular plank carpet laid in herringbone pattern, all freshly painted walls, and new cabinetry and countertops. The reception desk was reclad in place.
New wall art and signage.
Shortly after the project was complete, the Shannon’s made a short video of the interior as an advertisement that they ran during the Summer Olympics this summer. You can see that video on their Facebook page.
Now their Grandville offices reflect their business. Everything is straight and bright!