April 2017

The Art and Function of Floating Ceilings

Floating ceilings are a trending design element, and they bring both style and function to any space. Adding a floating ceiling to a space will engage corridors and rooms, so that it isn’t just a plain and flat ceiling. This design upgrade is also relatively inexpensive to do, for the impact it will have.

Adding a suspended ceiling has a two way design function. Not only can you dress up your flat ceiling, but you also have the opportunity to conceal any wiring or piping, to avoid negative visual impact. Using a suspended ceiling will also add an engaging and dramatic impact, incorporates a way finding tool, and adds importance to an area of your space. An example in my portfolio is the High Cotton Brewery Tap Room, where I added a floating ceiling above the bar, utilizing colorful wood planks for design, while also highlighting one of the most important areas of the room.

Adding a floating ceiling to a commercial building can also highlight prominent areas for guests, like a reception area or a conference room. When I am designing a commercial office, I prefer to use floating ceilings in design, as the floor and walls need to remain functional. A suspended ceiling allows room for “play” in my design, and helps add an essence of contrast and design without compromising the function of the office. One of my favorite commercial spaces where a floating ceiling added a powerful design element to the space is at Metropolitan Bank, above the reception desk.

Adding a suspended or floating ceiling adds an incredible impact to the design of any space, while also easy on the wallet. I appreciate this design element’s ability to not only add dimension to any space, but provide function to those who use it.

Kooky Canuck

Kooky Canuck is a Canadian restaurant that brings a distinct theme to the city of Memphis. When the restaurant decided to move locations downtown, I took advantage of the opportunity to take his cleaner line, and further advance it by showcasing rustic elements of a classic Canadian Pub, while also hinting a more sophisticated look. Various ceiling heights and floating wood panes give a great composition of space, and I really enjoyed working with the original brick walls and arch to create this space.

Starting with the bar, I used this element as a statement piece for the space. This oversized bar is complete with a red lacquered backdrop and TV’s . There is a secondary element at the bar, as the interior of the restaurant is divided, there is a front and back half of the restaurant. The front of the restaurant is cozy with banquettes and booths, so if the bar is empty, it still looks and feels inviting.

The restaurant is divided into two halves, which allowed me to design for multi functions of the restaurant. The front portion of the space is where the bar and banquettes are, and provide a sophisticated yet cozy dining experience. The back half of the restaurant is filled with tables and chairs, specifically for big groups, like the Mississippi Queen riverboat tours or the City bus tours. This part of the restaurant makes Kooky Canuck the only place in Downtown Memphis that can accommodate that large of a group, and gives them a chance to eat the famous Kookamonga Challenge, which is to eat a 10 pound burger under an hour.

Using dramatic elements in this Canadian restaurant allowed me to add a sophisticated element to a classic Canadian pub. Whether you are touring Memphis as a guest, or a local wanting to enjoy a Memphis classic, the new location is definitely one to visit.

Grizzlies Players Family Lounge

When the Grizzlies players and their families come to the games at the FedEx Forum, they often have families and younger children to consider. Often times, long events can put stress on younger children, so the Grizzlies Ordination felt the need to a family lounge for the players’ families and kids. The key to designing this space was to give function and comfort to these families as they watch the games. This space was designed to cater to both the parents and the kids, and the resulting design was sleek and simple.

I began by creating a more workable kitchen with a breakfast bar, and added another restroom. A secondary nursery was added to this space for the smaller kids. I also added a secondary playroom for the Children that are too old for the nursery, complete with a lower wall so that the parents could easily keep an eye on their kids while they watch the game. Although most of the family members go into the stadium to watch the game live, I felt it was important to add oversized TV’s to this lounge, so that parents with restless children could still see their family members play, and so parents visiting the kitchen do not miss any vital plays.

Designing this space required a lot of focus on functionality. It was important to take into account how the space was to be used by families, and to make a stylish but comfortable lounge for parents and children to enjoy was key. For the parents, I made sure there would be easy access to both the basketball games and the children. For the children, I gave all age groups a place to either play or sleep. I was happy to add another project to my portfolio for the Memphis Grizzlies.