San Francisco-based interior designers Studio O+A have recently completed the new Silicon Valley headquarter of data storage company Evernote. In a clean and modern context, construction materials may acquire the design impact of richer finishes. Evernote’s coffee bar and break areas are clad with Douglas fir plywood, the texture and grain of which provides its own graphic patterns. Forgoing expensive interior branding, Evernote instead hired chalk artist Dana Tanamachi to draft a wall-sized representation of the company’s identity, complete with its tagline, “Remember everything” and elephant logo. Low-maintenance, water-conserving plants on an adjoining wall contribute to the reception area’s look of unforced spaciousness.
Adding to the informality is the placement of a coffee bar—with fully functioning donut and pastry counter—at the reception station. An echo of Evernote’s mission of turning impulses into lasting archives of information, the interior design transforms the spontaneous habits of its staff (grabbing a donut on arrival, for example) into a lasting element.
This encouragement of spontaneity is reprised in the white ash stairway that connects the second and third floors. The wide staircase is fitted with cushioned step seating to make it a natural gathering place and area for relaxation. There are other spaces for breaks and informal meetings throughout the office—a large communal dining room; a ping-pong table; a designated fitness center equipped with treadmills, stationary bikes, and other exercise devices; and a series of small, strategically placed snack and coffee counters. The cumulative result of all these break options is an environment that promotes those casual interactions from which so many creative impulses spring.
As befits a work environment attuned to informal collaboration, the finish palette for Evernote is light. White walls and pastel accents mix with blonde wood and lighting that augment the natural brightness of the windows to subliminally communicate the spirit of the company—and turn a tight-budget, tight-schedule build-out into something memorable.
all images © JASPER SANIDAD