Originally published in Interiors & Sources

09/26/2012

Celebrating Your City

Mannington Commercial's Design Local program kicks off in Chicago with 24 hours of frantic, inspired design.

By AnnMarie Martin

 
  • /Portals/3/images/magazine/2012/1012/I_1012_Web_Hpng_1.jpg

    Suzanne Maynard of Cannon Design, Erin Foster of Perkins Eastman and Victoria Stemmer of Murphy Jahn mull over the pieces retrieved by each team member and marvel at the common aesthetic thread that runs through all of them. View larger

  • /Portals/3/images/magazine/2012/1012/I_1012_Web_Hpng_2.jpg

    Emily Robinson of HKS contemplates what direction to take the Team Chicago collection in. View larger

  • /Portals/3/images/magazine/2012/1012/I_1012_Web_Hpng_3.jpg

    The amazing photography of Team Chicago is edited down and pinned to boards for further inspirational direction. View larger

Inspired by the Shops at Target campaign, Mannington Commercial launched its own nod to Main Street in late August with its Design Local program.

First held in Chicago, the company will make stops in three more major cities through the fall— San Francisco, Austin and Washington, D.C.—assembling a team of designers from various firms in each location. Each team member is given $200, a digital camera and free reign to collect details, objects, pictures and artifacts that represent their city. The team then reassembles and puts all of the pieces together to create a new flooring collection—and it all happens in a span of just 24 hours.

“As we watched the Shops at Target campaign unfold this past year, we were captivated by the idea of a large company creating a platform to support and celebrate independent retailers—all with an emphasis on how design can contribute to community and the buying experience,” explains Natalie Jones, vice president of commercial brand development and creative product. “These values resonated with our own core values at Mannington, and Design Local was the result.”

“We have always been interested in finding new ways to connect with the design community. In particular, we look for ways to engage designers in our product development process. As a nearly 100-year-old, family-owned company with manufacturing locations in nine communities throughout the U.S., we are also deeply committed to producing local goods, keeping jobs in America and giving back to the communities where we live and work,” she adds.

Media partner I&S was there every step of the way to document these highly original ventures. While in the Windy City, tagging along with Team Chicago members, we found them inspired by everything from graffiti to architecture to fashion, resulting in an overall theme of “hard and worn.”

Many members sought out texture and pattern and found themselves stuck between nature and architecture, the two worlds colliding on a continual basis throughout the city.

“The city mimics itself constantly,” says Madelaine Eschrich of Forrer Business Interiors, who found similar shapes throughout town.

Another important theme for Team Chicago was reflection. “I played with reflection and layering,” says Victoria Stemmer of Murphy Jahn, “as there is lots of reflective glass around.” (We are proud to report that Stemmer got kicked out of a couple clothing stores that afternoon!)

For Team Chicago, it was a study in oxymorons: luxury met grunge and elegance met rawness that afternoon. “And that sort of defines the city,” explains Suzanne Maynard of Cannon Design.

“The designers in the first event, representing six firms from the Chicago area, dove in deep from the first moment, collapsing the traditional design process—inspiration, interpretation, conception and translation—into an intense 24-hour period,” says Jones.

“As they shared their perspectives and inspirations, it was remarkable to see common underlying themes come to the surface, then evolve and develop. Seeing six individual talents work as a group to shape patterns and color palettes was an incredible experience and makes us look forward to seeing where their entry in the competition ends up—as well as to the 24-hour design workshops in San Francisco, Austin and D.C.”

Once the Mannington production team has completed all four collections, they’ll be posted online by early 2013 for the public to vote on.

The winning team and collection will be celebrated at NeoCon in June. Look for more coverage of Design Local in future issues of I&S and on www.interiorsandsources.com.

 

 


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Visit our website today to learn about the design flexibility of a Morton building and the endless possibilities of partnering with our designBUILD team.


Wood construction is both cost and energy efficient. Check out Morton Buildings and our designBUILD team online today to discover all the benefits of post-frame construction.


When choosing a metal-clad building for your next construction project, consider Morton Buildings, Inc., and their designBUILD team, we’ll make your dream a reality.

Bluebeam® Revu® simplifies digital facilities document management from design review to leveraging as-builts, maintenance manuals and O&Ms submittals.

We Can Help You Reduce Energy by 30%

Our mission is to help our customers manage their buildings' energy costs, improve reliability, and enhance performance while having a positive impact on the environment.
CLICK HERE to find out how.


 
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