i29 interior architects

Submitted for: Designer of the Year

About the Designer

In a world that’s more and more virtual, they create brick and mortar experiences that add extra wow to real life. They don’t make interiors to impress people, but interiors that leave an impression on people. This has been their mission since the day they opened their doors on Industrieweg 29. They believe in simplicity and contrast. Simplicity to them means being selective and to push each choice to the limit. Contrast provides energy. Bringing opposites together unifies diversity. They believe that these aspects play a big role in charismatic environments that leave an impression on people. They deliver concepts, design and realisation for private, commercial and public spaces. Spaces with strong identities that speak loud and clear in order to attract, energize and inspire people. Their studio is full of highly motivated and engaged talents. They love to inspire, touch and wow with their spaces, because wow is a language everybody in the world speaks.

Why they’ve been nominated

They have been working for clients like De Bijenkorf (Selfridges), Samsonite, FRAME Magazine, and have won international awards such as The Great Indoors Awards, Dutch Design Awards, FX Awards and many more. They stand for a work ethic that is dependent neither on expensive materials nor on technical show. They look for choices that answer to multiple questions at the same time. They should tell a conceptual story about the company, the space and it’s users. In the last ten years, their team has been steadily growing. Starting small with only two founders, they are now with a team of 10 interior designers from 4 different nationalities. It may sound normal, or many people take this for granted, but they have steadily built our own standards and policies over the years just by themselves. By staying close to themselves, they have the opportunity of staying authentic, original and relevant. They are good at focussing on what is most important, and leaving out what is irrelevant. This is the most important feature of their office culture and results in the work they deliver. Their office is currently in transition of once being the ‘creative wild card’ making radical design proposals towards a ‘professional company’ with a serious trackrecord ( yet still making radically surprising interiors, haha). They are currently working on our new identity and website that reflects our clear approach to work. They are ready for (more) new challenges and therefore participate in this award.

Princessehof

Princessehof celebrates its 100th birthday; time for a major renovation of the museum. We made the museum more accessible, both literally and figuratively: by opening up the rather closed 18th century building and bringing the interior to the 21st century. On a tight budget we created a contemporary setting that not only brings out the best of the collection but also gives the museum a new social function. The main challenge was to create a welcoming and contemporary entrance area in the rather closed monumental buildings. To attract more people and offer visitors the option of perusing the tearoom and museum store, the entrance area is entirely opened up. Visitors can now access the museum from both the front- and back entrance. The new area welcomes visitors in a spacious entrance hall with lots of daylight and connects the museum store, cash register area and tearoom. The horizontal alignment and level differences in these objects are a subtle reference to layers of earth, the natural resource of ceramics. The contrast between old / new and monumental / contemporary complements each other, and together they form a powerful and surprising whole. It places the monument back into the here and now, not only in a functional sense.

Completion: 2018

Princessehof Lr 02
Princessehof Lr 08

Samsonite

The brief was to create an experience that unifies the diversity of the Samsonite Group and it’s sub-brands. To create a spatial identity which is fresh, recognizable and consistent, in order to inspire and attract a diverse group of customers. From young and fashionable to mature and classic. As today’s experienced dynamic consumer ask for fresh thinking and artistic gestures in order to be impressed, i29 aimed for a crystal clear concept that relates to the brand essence.i29 searched for an archaic symbol that intuitively refer to travel and movement in the broadest way. Providing the international operating brand with a universal communication that has the power to resonates with clients of different social- and age groups. The graphic black and white color scheme that i29 introduced as the base of the design refers to the natural habitat of the suitcase or bag, the ‘urban space’ and is almost intuitively ingrained in the global collective memory. The black and white pattern can not to be pinned down to one single style like modern or classic but does communicate in a powerful way. The monochrome color scheme is a strong base to match with any color or material of the products on display. A dynamic landscape is formed with multiple structures, each representing a sub-brand of Samsonite. Every brand has it’s own presentation including a wide variety of products, whilst keeping the overall appearance together in one clear statement. The oblique graphical pattern with the diagonally placed objects provide a strong sense of direction: the diagonal layout is a twist for the eye, as it seems like the complete space is turned. Lighting rails, centre floor units and perimeter units are all faced in one direction. A serie of open and closed showcase units provide enough display for the wide variety of products, while at the same time having the experience of walking through a blown up crosswalk.

Completion: 2017

Samsonite Lr 08
Samsonite Lr 01

The Kitchen

After a successful collaboration at Room on the Roof, i29 interior architects where asked to design restaurant ‘The Kitchen’ at De Bijenkorf Utrecht. The brief was to create a unique dining experience which seduces and inspires. i29 developed a concept for the interior design expressing freshness and variety; a subtle reference to food in general, and the diversity of flavors presented in the open kitchen area. The layout reveals several spatial experiences throughout the 850 m2 open area, with a variety of seating. The challenge was to create an environment that was made for heavy use, whilst still keeping quality in sharp details and natural materials. This resulted into an interior that mirrors the brand identity of the store itself, aiming for quality, luxury, creativity and youth. Inspired by the company name De Bijenkorf (beehive) and it’s hexagon shaped logo referring to a honeycomb, i29 designed a lively pattern of black hexagon tiles which seams to ‘swarm’ over the light flooring, bar and counter fronts. A triangular shaped open seating area next to the glass facade offers a diversity of furniture in black and natural wood in combination with a large lively green wall. The rough wood and plants are in contrast with the sharp glass partitions and all white ceilings. Brass details in lighting fixtures and flooring are matching to the yellow glass partitions. Fabrics are developed in custom colors to match within the overall material palet.

Completion: 2017

Bijenkorf Utrecht Lr 05
Bijenkorf Utrecht Lr 01

Private residence

With only 55 m2 footing -plus a 20 m2 1st floor- this residential structure still has a luxurious feel of space, and all around panoramas to the surrounding nature. This compact home is built for a family of four, including a living room, a kitchen / dining room, a patio, three bedrooms, one bathroom and two toilets. The layout is developed from the inside-out, using every cm2 to make the most out of the given space. A smart arrangement of functionalities defined the layout of this tiny home. Four separate volumes are interconnected around one central patio which result in a efficient layout, using integrated custom furniture. Each volume has its own program, while the boundaries between inside and outside are being blurred due to large expanses of glass. We made use of simple materials like natural oak wooden panels -or stained black to combine with the rough pinewood facade- and a continuing polished concrete floor. We strived for a design strategy in which architecture and interior architecture come together in a model combination. By linking interior components to the architecture and vice versa, the result is a high quality project which is not dependent of expensive materials or technical show. In every detail we aimed for the ultimate space efficient solution possible. Every aspect of the design is approached to produce a clear image and a unifying whole. Making quality projects is, in our opinion, not always ‘the bigger the better’. With only some simple yet smart interventions this project is of the highest standard and at the same time energy efficient, eco-friendly, and built with a small footprint. In this sense it’s a model example of a tiny house; smart, comfortable and no consessions to quality in both the interior and architecture design; small is beautiful.

Completion: 2018

Vinkeveen Lr 04
Vinkeveen Lr 06

BKR Center

Dutch citizens visit the BKR center to see their record in relation to mortgages, loans and debts. Our aim was to create an new interior identity that radiates professionalism, accuracy and transparency. An open landscape where employees can meet with visitors and talk about precair financial subjects ask for many private areas in the design and superb acoustics. A serie of acoustic meeting booths are made from soft beige fabrics and wood, with some strong colored surfaces as a contrasting element. Our challenge was to integrate all different elements in a unifying langscape of work and meeting places. A subtle color play of surfaces and materials connects the different objects through the space. Carpets are finished in the same color tone as cabinet fronts, completed with tables and chairs in matching color combinations. The light flooring, walls and ceiling are in contrast with the furniture family. All cabinets, desks, meeting booths and benches are custom designed and made to measure. Added with selected furniture in matching colors to blend in with the general color and material palet. The bold colors and graphical play are referring to traditional Dutch modernism. The result is a simple, timeless and strong new identity for the BKR.

Completion: 2017

Bkr Lr 01
Bkr Lr 05

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