This ID's Showroom Is a Museum of Materials and Styles
Having the best of all worlds.
It’s a problem many homeowners often face in a renovation – having to choose a floor, wall or kitchen countertop material through a tiny swatch piece.
While they do give an idea of how things may look and feel – nothing compares to seeing it at work. The only question is, is there a place that allows homeowners to compare and touch all types of applied materials, under one roof?
The loft space was extended to twice its original size, to include the staff desks, cosy corner and glass encased living room.
Schemacraft’s brand new showroom at Henderson does just that. Be it homogenous tiles, marble slabs, laminates, glass or carpet grass (you name em’), the 2,000 sqft loft/office concept space is a literal museum of interior materials.
“Our goal was to create a space where homeowners can experience a complete range of materials, design styles and methods of execution available in the local market at work,” explains Raphael, the Project Manager at Schemacraft.
This is instantly evident upon stepping through its sleek, contemporary foyer. Decked in realistic, marbled homogenous tiles, visitors are greeted with a modern-style kitchen area, which serves as the interior firm’s main showcase.
On a raised, vinyl flooring platform, the chic, cosmopolitan-looking kitchen features kitchen fittings from Teka and SMEG.
“The kitchen is the main area where a lot of built-ins are done, and where homeowners can really judge the quality of workmanship. It serves as a good platform for clients to see what we can do.” Raphael says.
Moving in, the showroom subtly transitions from a chic cosmopolitan pad to an edgy, industrial loft. Complete with exposed brick walls and cement screed floors, the central area opens up to a lofty communal table and row of discussion booths.
The showroom is designed to mimic the flow of a typical consultation; first, clients get to see and experience via the show kitchen, before moving to the booths for further discussion.
Meanwhile, upstairs in the staff area, a more Scandinavian approach takes hold, with lighter, laminated wood cabinets and muted colours. Even Raphael’s own office is a play on alternative design styles; dark varnished parquet blend seamlessly with built-in cabinetry for a traditional, professional look.
Besides providing homeowners this unprecedented access to various styles and finishes, the showroom is also a highly functional office space that fulfils Schemacraft’s growing needs.
“It was one of the reasons why we decided to move into this bigger space at Henderson. Back then, a team of 6 of us were squeezed into a 500 sqft office. But now with a headcount of 10, we needed somewhere bigger.” Raphael admits.
With almost double the square footage, the firm sought to create an open and comfortable working environment. For instance, office tables were customized to provide wider working space for staff, plus built-in cubbyholes that work as locker areas. Employees can also choose to work wherever they liked, including the communal table on the first floor.
And not forgetting staff welfare, a bigger pantry space was allocated, with even a cozy corner where the team can sit back on beanbags and watch TV.
“We believe that creating an open environment helps us bond and bounce off better ideas,” he says.
Impressive as it is, perhaps the most outstanding aspect about Schemacraft’s new showroom is the firm's unyielding attention to detail. Despite having a Hodge Podge of styles, materials and functions to deal with – the team managed to tie everything together in a modern contemporary flair.
Storage cabinets were built throughout to maximize the usable area of the loft space. Here, the stairway area features a full-length shelving solution for placing swatch books.
“It was a challenge, but well worth it. We learnt to juggle with different expectations. For instance, how can we benefit the clients that come here? How can we best showcase the products of our vendors, and does the showroom tell our story and show the quality of our work?” Raphael explains.
After several months planning and executing, the result was thankfully all they could have hoped for.
With partitions doubling as seating areas, the custom-made discussion booths were designed to provide privacy for clients during consultations. Carpet grass was utilized to create a sense of comfort.
He quips, “Most visitors can’t believe we managed to squeeze everything inside this showroom! (Laughs). But I’m glad that we are able to show them how the right design can bring the even the most differing elements together”.