Your move into your new space is complete and furniture is in place, but your new office space is still missing that certain energy or atmosphere you desired. You are still in need of that finishing touch…art and accessories. Just as the perfect dress needs the right necklace and earrings, or the perfect suit needs the right tie, so does the office need the right art and accessories. The finishing touch to your new office space cannot be an afterthought. Just as your office space was carefully developed, your finishing touches are as well.
|The large artwork piece hung in the dimly lit Therapy room, adding the final touch and sets the mood for new patients.|
The following is the first piece of a three part article on Art & Accessories.
- How much money? – Budgeting and where to find it
- What goes where? – Philosophy of design intent
- What piece works? – Selection by size and installation
How much money do I need for art?
The art and accessories for your office do not have to be expensive but they are necessary to give it that finished appeal. You need to include it in your budget up front.
The cost of art and accessories can be, if you are an art aficionado, extremely expensive, such as $1000’s for a piece. But to get a great completed finish for your space, this is not necessary.
We typically budget $300 for each piece of artwork and $100 for each patient care poster. This establishes a good overall budget that also allows us to shift money if necessary. For example, we may spend up to $500 for a piece that we really love in a key spot; and then only $100 or less for pieces that are a little more common.
|Original Fine Artwork collected by our client. We displayed them in more public space and saved more inexpensive pieces for closed offices.|
We buy art at all kinds of places. You can buy pre-framed art at places like Target and IKEA, or you can find a little bit more upscale art at places like Z Gallery or West Elm. You can also find a variety of art on websites such as Art.com and Prints.com, etc., and you can get these items framed very nicely online as well. We have seen some incredible pieces when people bought a photo on line, had it printed and framed it using a ready-made frame with a large white mat.
|We selected this inexpensive piece of art from Ikea for the Restroom and sources more expensive pieces for public areas.|
We love very artistic expressions of the spine. We have definitely seen some beautiful pieces that become a focal point for the office. We have also found a few sources for art that is more mass produced and can allow for that expression, without as much expense. Look for Part 2 for these contacts.
One important thing to know is it’s all about the framing…it can turn a mass-produced poster into a masterpiece or a masterpiece into a mistake. Some of the tricks of the trade in framing those pieces is to frame it so that it doesn’t look like an inexpensive outlet store piece, but has substance and artistic flare. We suggest a mat of at least 3 to 4 inches in width. Make sure the frame is not out of proportion to the art itself. Typically, mats are not colored, as this can date the picture faster, but are neutral off-white or black. Michael’s is a great place for framing, especially with coupons. Obviously, if you have a great art gallery that you work with, they can help guide you through the process. Even as designers we quite often use art galleries and their expertise in matting and framing.
Patient Care Posters
|All Patient Care Posters are framed in a higher end frame and hung in groupings in order to blend with the re-designed office space.|
The other thing we do is to make sure that your patient care pieces are framed appropriately. We have seen a lot of patient care posters framed in really inexpensive frames and they are hung by the lip of the frame, usually creating a bow at the top, and they are never level. Needless to say, that is very cheap looking when you have a beautiful space. So you need to budget for these posters too. We usually budget $100 each – which would cover both ready- made frames for common sizes and custom frames for those posters that are odd sizes.
|Final touches – a beautiful bowl was selected to complement a sitting space.|
To give your space the final touch, you need to have a few decorative accessories. This can include a vase on an end table, a bowl on your front desk, a nice book on your coffee table, a pretty clock on the wall, a floral piece in the restroom and at the various spots in the office. And always add plants, live if you have the light, or silk for adding “life” in a dark area.
For a 2,000 square foot office, we typically budget $800 for these items. Once again, Target, Home Goods, and IKEA can be a great source for these objects.
We hope this has helped you in your planning. Look for part 2 and 3 to come, and please contact us if we can help you in your search.