An Interior Designer’s Guide to Healthcare Furniture

Posted by Janet Voigt on Mon, Sep 18, 2017 @ 01:00 PM
Interior Designer for Contract Furniture
Recently I was talking to an interior designer who took her first healthcare design job. This particular interior designer had a lot of residential experience but when I asked her about selecting contract-grade furniture, she was totally unaware that there was furniture designed for non-residential applications.
 
While the elements of good residential interior design might translate well into a commercial healthcare or group living environment, the furniture and fixtures do not.
 
Bland, sterile-looking healthcare facilities are a thing of the past. Aesthetics now encompass a broad range of healing elements including energetic color-schemes and nature-based hues that encourage comfort. But beyond the basics of color is a new world of functionality.
 
Furniture and fixtures for health care and healing environments must also prevent falls, encourage mobility, discreetly deal with incontinence and fluids, maintain sterile surfaces and support the latest patient-centered technologies.
 
So what exactly is contract-grade furniture? 
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Topics: Interior Design Advice of Group Living Facilities, Contract Furniture, Behavioral Healthcare Furniture

The Contract Furniture Trendsetter

Posted by Janet Voigt on Mon, Aug 12, 2013 @ 11:27 AM

In the world of ho-hum furniture for health care and facility furniture, things are heating up.

The baby boomers are hitting the health care market en masse for both acute and extended care services. As the country's largest consumer-base, the fifty-plus crowd are not just consumers of health care services, they are also decision-makers for respite care for their aging parents. While cost is a primary driver of choices of health care facilities of all types, aesthetics plays a huge role in the decision process.

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Topics: Health Care Furniture, Interior Design Advice of Group Living Facilities, durable furniture, Contract Furniture

Furniture for Behavioral Healthcare

Posted by Janet Voigt on Tue, Jun 25, 2013 @ 03:30 PM

Well Designed Behavioral Healthcare Facilities Benefit Both the Patients and Staff.

In behavioral healthcare environments, the safety and comfort of staff and consumers is always top priority.

Elements from building design and hardware to furniture and fixtures impact traffic flow, comfort, and the overall functionality of the space.

  • A recent feature in Behavioral Healthcare recognized outstanding design in treatment and recovery centers. What united these award-winning spaces is that they offer patients and staff spacious facilities that simultaneously offer both privacy and community. 
  • Functional spaces flow well from one to the next but spaces are separated by floor treatments and furniture to make them feel cozy and intimate even when the overall space is big.  Spaces for dining, group therapy, family visits and game areas are barrier free but still clearly a separate space.
  • Patients have reduced anxiety and appear to be more open to therapy in facilities that welcomed natural light and used colors that were warm and neutral with pops of color to energize the space. 
  • The most favored furniture designs are those that are residential in style and mimic what a patient might find in their homes. Versatile pieces like upholstered chairs and laminate top tables can be used for a variety of therapies and activities. Durable fabrics and vinyls ensure that furniture will last over time.
Furniture Concepts , an industry leader in providing furniture for behavioral healthcare can be counted on to provide the type of furniture that will help you to create the same type of furniture design that defines best in class treatment designs. 
  • With the right advice, even the most overwhelming furniture project can be organized to create the perfect therapeutic environment.  And, at the right price!

upholsteredfurntiure   Created on 01/03/12 at 17:14:03   Need Pricing? Click to Get it!

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Topics: Interior Design Advice of Group Living Facilities, Contract Furniture, Group Furniture Buying Advice

The Power of the Right Upholstery Fabric

Posted by Janet Voigt on Wed, Mar 06, 2013 @ 08:30 AM


When selecting contract fabrics for upholstered furniture, there are many things to consider. When buying for commercial businesses or health care facilities you will  have to Selecting fabrselect upholstery fabric(s) for your furniture purchase.

Contract furniture is always “made to order” due to the enormous variety of furniture styles and fabric types, finishes, patterns and colors. The possible combinations that can be created imagining the endless number of furniture styles plus hundreds of thousands of upholstery fabric and its variables creates a dizzying assortment of potential groupings.

While you can expect contract upholstered furniture to take a few weeks to produce, you may be surprised by the pricing which rarely feels like “custom” pricing. The truth is that contract upholstery sales costs far lower than its residential / retail counterpart so while the options are more plentiful, price is actually lower and quality is substantially higher than retail.
  ic for contract upholstered furniture can be a daunting task. Choosing color, pattern, fabric type, and performance characteristics is a lot of decision on top of selecting the style of the furniture itself. While the technical aspects of fabric performance are important, let’s first focus on the more visible elements.
 
  • Color is an obvious consideration.  Color sets the mood for a room, especially if you are adding big pieces of furniture like sofas, loveseats and lounge chairs. Depending on the existing décor or tone of your facility, color can be used play up contemporary elements of the buildings design or conversely can be used to tone down more dated elements. Warm colors complement traditional designs and cool colors tend to highlight contemporary design. Mixing colors within a single room setting can add drama and can improve the overall look of a room compared to a single, repeating color. When mixing colors, look for colors that harmonize rather than contrast to create more of a designer look. Be careful not to choose colors that are too light. Whites and light earth tones are very “in” right now for residential design but tend not to perform well in contract facilities even when treated with soli and stain resistance. Instead, look at deeper solid earth tones with texture.  The textures add an additional natural element without compromising the dirt-hiding properties of darker tones.
 
  • Pattern is probably the most intimidating selection for many contract buyers.   Patterns do not always age well.  What is hip and trendy today might quickly end up looking like yesterday’s news.  Big, graphic patterns can be the riskiest patterns choices but the right selection can really add drama when the building design lacks character. The scale of the pattern should be in balance with the size of the room so large, bold patterns would not be an ideal match for a small room with small-scale furniture. Large, open spaces can accommodate more pattern. A designer trick for using large pattern in a room is to find a color that is present in small quantities in the patterned fabric and select a solid color fabric in that color. Use the large, bolder pattern on chairs and loveseats and use the solid color on the larger pieces like sofas to create a high-end look.
 
Durable furniture fabric is essential in any contract environment. Some qualities to look for include thread count, double rub results and fiber type:

  • The higher the thread count, the more durable the fabric since the weave of the material is denser and therefore more durable. Additionally, consider whether the pattern is woven into the fabric or whether it is printed on top of a solid color fabric. Woven patterns will wear far better than printed patterns.
  • Double rub results measure the number of times fabric can withstand being rubbed together under standardized, laboratory testing. The higher the double rub results the more durable the fabric. Results from 15,000 double rubs on up indicate better performance for heavy-use environments.  Results as high as 100,000 and above are commonly available from contract furniture suppliers.
  • Fibers can be mad made or natural. Man made fibers like acrylic, nylon, olefin and vinyl offer a higher degree of durability and stain and soil resistance than natural fibers. In addition to their inherent stain and soil resistance, many fabric treatments are available through contract suppliers that offer an additional measure of dependability. Crypton is far and away the most common fabric treatment for contract facilities. Crypton is a process that is applied on top, bottom and within the weave of the fabric resulting in a fluid and soil barrier that keeps fabric clean as well as hygienic.

When considering choices for your next furniture project, always contact a reputable contract furniture supplier who understands the needs of your facility.

   Free Ebook on Tips on How to Get started on Buying Contract Furniture   
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Topics: Interior Design Advice of Group Living Facilities, Commercial Lounge Furniture, Contract Furniture, Fabric/Upholstered Furniture for Contract, Contract Furniture & Fabric: Making it Last

Get Rid of Ugly Furniture Once and For All

Posted by Janet Voigt on Thu, Feb 07, 2013 @ 01:38 PM

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Topics: Interior Design Advice of Group Living Facilities, durable furniture, Contract Furniture, Group Furniture Buying Advice, CAL 133, Contract Furniture & Fabric: Making it Last

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