I suppose if you are an internet based company you are going to use the internet to find your own suppliers and that is what BlackCircles did when they embarked on an office relocation and fit-out.

We were contacted and arranged to meet with the senior management team in one of Edinburgh’s coffee shops to discuss their plans away from the eyes and ears of their staff as it wasn’t yet public knowledge.

Interior design, fit out and furniture for Blackcircles Edinburgh

As is often the case, we went through a couple of potential locations and then settled on what seemed like the ideal space only to then hear that the company who was moving out of the suite was now staying.

First interior design pencil sketch

So back to the drawing board and the next door suite was selected. To be fair, the space was a much easier shape to work with and it is also larger so the cloud had a silver lining but other challenges were looming. A bigger space but no more budget!

So maximum creativity required – step forward the design team and bring about a functional, minimalist space with just enough accents to keep Nick happy – whose eye for detail and nose for a bargain is the stuff of legends.

Some pretty clear lines were drawn and making the best use of space as well as planning for their future growth, a design emerged. Making sure that the natural daylight was allowed to filter through from reception whilst retaining some privacy for the office staff was achieved using some material more associated with conservatories, but the result is spectacular.

Allowing the staff the opportunity to work away from their desk was another consideration and various spaces have been incorporated to include quiet/concentration space, more open collaborative areas and a town hall space with tiered seating where the staff can gather for company announcements.

BlackCircles parent company is Michelin and another component of the project was branding – the desire to have it but not in an overt way.  Using the original inverted M design from Michelins first tyre design, we have created window manifestation for the meeting rooms. 

Shared components on the Samuel Bruce Team Bench desk design kept the cost per workstation down and allowed BlackCircles to specify the award winning Drumback from Viasit for all their operator chairs.

The making of:

The biggest talking point though goes to their wall mural in the reception and something that our Interior Photographer was the most pleased with – a line drawing of an iconic vehicle that he drives himself, the one and only Land Rover Defender 110 with the proper engine (and if you don’t know what he means – that’s not the Ford one!)