Flooring is one of the most important features of any interior. Not only does it have to set the scene and create a backdrop that complements the rest of the interior, but it can also have a dramatic functional impact on a space, from acoustic quality to wellness.

Brisbane-based interior design studio Bearspace Design has an unparalleled understanding of the power of flooring and uses it to craft interiors with complete freedom of expression – and Milliken products are one of the most creatively innovative tools they work with to achieve their vision. “The range of carpet with Milliken is incredible and allows us to create interesting design layers in our spaces,” says Julia Tamatea, founder of Bearspace Design.

Taking interiors to the next level: 4 Bearspace Design projects that are big on impact
The Bearspace Design team

Custom colourways establish a sense of identity at Dexus

A recent example that showcases the full range of Milliken’s potential is Dexus L26 / 145 Ann Street by Bearspace Design, a collection of four speculative suites, each with a distinctive identity to appeal to a particular tenant type, ranging from a sophisticated monochromatic scheme for a boutique legal/fund management firm to a playful fit-out designed to appeal to a vibrant recruitment company.

To achieve these four distinct visions, Bearspace Design took advantage of Milliken’s Milliken Couture design process to provide custom colourways and designs that will precisely fit the scheme – such as the use of Topography 2.0 in the Explorer and custom Wayfinding designs, Breakline custom colourway in Suite 01, which was adapted to bring the vision to life.

“Milliken’s products not only aligned with the desired aesthetic for each suite but also offered the flexibility to customise areas,” says Adele Friedman, QLD state sales manager for Milliken.

Taking interiors to the next level: 4 Bearspace Design projects that are big on impact
Suite 04 | Milliken Patina Vibes in Vintage Brass colourway

While furnishings and other finishes were an important consideration in each of the speculative suites, it’s the Milliken flooring that really celebrates the individual style of each suite. “All four suites pushed the boundaries of traditional spec suite design,” says Tamatea. “Adele, our sales representative at Milliken, has always [been able] to assist us with any request, even if it may seem ridiculous!”

The Suite 03, designed for a speculative recruitment client, really showcases this approach, with a sophisticated arrangement of Milliken carpet in Patina Vibes in a Vintage Brass colourway and Milliken Luxury Vinyl Flooring in Mixed Formations, Made of Stone in Open Fragments, and a Chrome colourway. The two finishes offer up a pleasing contrast in materiality while also working together to map out intuitive wayfinding throughout the space.

Taking interiors to the next level: 4 Bearspace Design projects that are big on impact
Suite 02 | Milliken Fractals collection in Enlace and Entangle in Frost colourway. 

Like many of Milliken’s collections, the flooring used throughout the Dexus suites take inspiration from the natural world – from the geometric map interpretations of Topography 2.0, to the abstracted softened florals of Fractals in Enlace. “Biophilic design principles and natural elements were built into each environment,” says Tamatea of the decision to use these designs. “This created a more balanced, harmonious, rhythmic, and comfortable space for the tenants.”

Not surprisingly, given the proven benefits of biophilic design in reducing stress and increasing productivity within working environments, this biophilic approach is favoured by Bearspace Design.

A graphic runway brings direction to Connect Offices

Taking interiors to the next level: 4 Bearspace Design projects that are big on impact

In the Connect Offices Eight Mile Plains coworking space the entrance corridor features a lit hanging plant wall at its end – and a graphic runway of Milliken carpet from the Topography 2.0 collection in the Explorer design in a custom colourway draws the eye to this dramatic feature.

“Bearspace Design expressed a desire to incorporate a sense of direction and movement in the Suite spaces and wanted to specify something unique to highlight their high-end work,” says Friedman. “By leveraging Milliken’s collections and their aesthetic and sustainable attributes, Bearspace Design could also easily tailor and modify existing ranges with Milliken’s PrintWorks™ innovative technology to suit the specific project requirements.”

Energising workers with Milliken Patina Vibes

In another Brisbane CBD building – this one located in front of King George’s Square – another commercial project by Bearspace Design uses Milliken carpet from the Patina Vibes collection, using the neutrally toned Vintage Brass and rich, energising Mulberry colourway to spectacular effect.

Taking interiors to the next level: 4 Bearspace Design projects that are big on impact

The refurbished workspace for a corporate tenant needed to celebrate the historic architecture of the surrounding area and infuse the space with both energy and a sense of wellness to support mental focus. Permeating the collaboration zones with an essential sense of calm is the Vintage Brass colourway, which also acts as a neutral base to the more vibrant Mulberry colourway. The Mulberry carpet has been consciously matched to the plum-coloured walls and “naturally lifts the energy levels for anybody utilising this space”, explains Tamatea.

Dynamic flooring reinforces a strong design concept

On Level 15 at Dalrymple Bay Water Front Place in Brisbane, Bearspace Design has used horizontal and vertical lines to great effect. Equally, Bearspace wanted the flooring to contribute both direction and a sense of movement to the fit-out, supporting the site’s strong connection to land, ocean and nature.

Taking interiors to the next level: 4 Bearspace Design projects that are big on impact

To this end, Bearspace selected Milliken’s Major Frequency: One Collection a design they were “thrilled” with, as it captured  the effect of the sun reflecting off rippling water. “The ocean appears dark while light sparkles off the water – which is exactly the effect these carpet colourways created when combined,” says Tamatea of the Distortion and Vibration designs in the Tremor colourway.

Flooring is key to the interior design concept and functionality of the space, complementing the chevron architecture, desking and traffic flows. “We had the traffic flow areas in one direction and then we placed the carpet on a diagonal”, emulating the interplay of water ripples that arise when wind and ocean currents meet.

Bearspace’s collaborative relationship with Milliken saw them overcome both time constraints and stock limitations. Milliken went over and above to deliver ‘quiet room’ carpeting, getting the design printed onto a different carpet base. The flexibility, says Tamatea, was brilliant, “and the carpet looked amazing”.

Making sustainability the common thread, with Milliken

The use of Milliken carpet tiles goes beyond aesthetics, think improved acoustic and ergonomic performance, and impressive durability for high footfall areas. Perhaps most importantly, Milliken products boast serious sustainable credentials.

“We all need to be conscious of our impact on the environment these days,” says Tamatea. “It is becoming more prominent in everything we are doing and a new dimension we need to consider for each design.”

Milliken’s ambitious M/PACT™ Carbon Neutral Program – which has resulted in every Milliken floor product globally being certified carbon neutral and an ongoing commitment to reducing the brand’s impact on the world – was key in achieving this goal in each of these projects.

As these four projects show, the relationship between Bearspace Design and Milliken is a fruitful one, resulting in truly remarkable workplaces that balance aesthetic beauty, superior functionality, and ambitious sustainability goals in equal measure.

“Julia and the team at Bearspace Design are known for their remarkable creative work,” says Freidman. “Milliken’s technology and innovation on their product offerings perfectly complement her designs and help bring them to life.”

Bearspace
bearspace.com.au

Milliken
millikenfloors.com.au  

Photography
Grace Ko, Julia Tamatea, Cieran Murphy, Hannah Puechmarin

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