Shoe manufacturer ECCO recently hired interior design firm HONG Designworks to design their new office in Xi’an, China.
Set independently at one side, the brand logo wall is in pure white and complemented by soft light. Besides, the designers extracted elements from mottled old city walls of Xi’an, and combined them with ECCO’s spirit of leather innovation, to create a leather brick wall with mixed colors in the reception area. Leather bricks of different colors correspond to distinct phases in leather making, and echo the appearance changes of Xi’an city walls over the last several hundred years. The undulating rhythm of the wall as well as innovative oriental and occidental elements catch visitors’ eye. The built-in leather bricks are gift boxes that can be taken away by visitors, making up for the regret of not being able to bring back one brick of Xi’an city wall as a souvenir.
Beside the reception area, there lies a relatively private resting area, which features simple structures but a distinctive image. The hanging leather artworks are inspired by the Shaanxi shadow puppetry and are made of ECCO’s leather materials. This small-scale space shows a modern aesthetic, and highlights the integration of Xi’an and Danish cultures. The reception area opens to the waiting area, and provides multi-layer visual experiences from different viewing angles and distances. The photo hung on the wall presents the wheat field next to ECCO’s Danish factory. It not only conveys the brand’s culture, but also adds natural elements to the space.
Stepping into the conference room, shadow puppetry art installations on the wall come into view. Those exquisite wall adornments were handmade by an inheritor of the intangible cultural heritage. The etched aluminum artwork features natural grain, which conveys the brand’s concept in a subtle manner.
The space outside the conference room is turned into a break area. Bright yellow hue highlights this functional area, while the semi-closed ceiling produces an atmosphere of resting in open air. The horizontally suspended wooden table has steel structure inside, which enhances stability and is inserted into the wall to separate circulation routes. Next to the break room is the VIP lounge, which echoes the reception area in style. The designers drew inspirations from shoe last, a traditional shoe-making tool, to decorate its backdrop wall. The unique artworks become a visual focus, and evoke visitors’ curiosity about the shoe-making craftsmanship.
The workspace is free, comfortable and open. Diversified working areas and colors generate an energetic, inspiring environment, while also balancing the rhythm between the space and users.
Independent office rooms are connected to the open working area via transparent glass doors, and adopt a calmer tone to match the scenarios,” says HONG Designworks.
Location: Xi’an, China; Date completed: 2020; Size: 14,466 square feet; Design: HONG Designworks; Photos: Tan Xiao / Studio Ten;