What Does It Mean To Be An Integrated Design Firm?
We are an integrated design firm, but what (you may wonder) does that mean? And, specifically, what does that mean for your project and how it benefits you? Here is a breakdown for what it means for you and your project when the integrated design firm you are working with is us, Board & Vellum.
April 12, 2018
There it is on our homepage - we’re an integrated design firm. It sounds great but (you might be asking), what does that mean? And (you might also be wondering), how does that benefit you and make your project better?
Let’s start with that first question. If you Google ‘integrated design,’ you’ll see there are many, many strains of thought on what it should be and who should or shouldn’t be involved. Setting aside the areas of disagreement for a minute (well, this entire blog post), let’s look at the commonalities.
On larger projects, the integrated design process starts with assembling a team with diverse expertise to work collaboratively on the project. The goal is to tap this diversity of perspectives early enough that good (and/or awesome) design happens.
At Board & Vellum, this includes architects, interior designers, and landscape architects, all under the same roof with the shared goal of generating awesome, seamless design that doesn’t bother with limiting ideas by profession, but rather seeks to find the best solution specific to each client and project.
But (you might now ask), what if I don’t have a large project? Or, maybe you’ve only hired on part of the Board & Vellum team to work on your project. For example, maybe you’re working with our landscape team to renovate your backyard, or maybe you’re working with our interiors team to freshen up your living space. Will you also benefit from our integrated design team?
The answer is… yes, you will! Because the culture of collaboration runs so deep at Board & Vellum, that naming it ‘integrated design’ feels like a bit of an afterthought – it’s just the way we do things because, in addition to producing great results, it’s quite simply a lot of fun to work this way.
Your project might be the topic of a Thursday crit (free advice from the entire office!), or a flash crit (a smaller group to quickly help the main design team think through a problem), or an informal desk crit (where you’re walking by and stop to engage with a colleague on the project they’re working on – a daily occurrence). It all adds up to a lot of scrutiny from a lot of different angles – and that’s good for you and your project. It’s the Board & Vellum flavor of integrated design.
As a landscape architect myself, and having worked in a handful of design firms over the course of my career, I can tell you, benefiting from an integrated team is fantastic. I have the ability to freely collaborate with my colleagues about how the interior and exterior will play together. I also get the opportunity to chime in and point out to the architecture and interior teams how their moves can better integrate with the landscape. This might be with simple material gestures, or with larger design concepts that observe sightlines through windows and across entertaining spaces.
All in all, we’re big fans, and we hope you’ll enjoy it, too. Check out our portfolio projects to see the results!