After almost ten years working out of our unit just outside of beautiful Modbury, Devon, it was fair to say that the place was starting to look pretty well lived in. It had served us well, and had it's fair share of stories to tell, but it was definitely time for a fresh coat of paint and little bit of attention. That's why, over Christmas, we rolled our sleeves up, stripped out all of our old furniture, and undertook a total renovation. Now, thanks to the hard work of a few dedicated people, we've got a beautiful workspace for our staff, complete with homemade upcycled furniture and a brand new customer area.
Our plan for the renovation was simple: a clean, organised space that reflected the company's passion for renewable technologies and an eco-friendly lifestyle. To achieve that dream, it meant stripping everything back to basics, and we mean EVERYTHING! Furniture, flooring, wall coverings, just about everything was set to get a refreshed new look. So we set aside a few weekends over Christmas, donned our scruffy clothes, and set to work rebuilding the office so we could see in 2018 in style.
The first thing on the to-do list was the walls, which had taken their fair share of punishment after almost a decade of service. Luckily, it's amazing what a change just a few coats of paint can make, and in almost no time at all, our office was starting to completely transform. For the walls, we chose a beautiful leaf green that matches our logo and really brightens up the room. We knew from the beginning that we wanted to get some green into the room, but we also didn't want our staff to head home everyday with sore eyes, so we decided just to give a few feature walls the green treatment, and having seen the finished product, we're definitely sure we made the right decision.
Next on the agenda was the flooring, which has been with us since the very beginning, even longer than some of our staff members! But unfortunately, nothing lasts for ever (especially when it comes to linoleum) and it was time for the flooring to come up. In its place though, we've now put down some beautiful, dark wood panels that really complement those new walls and give our office a whole new look.
When we first set out to renovate our office, we had one specific word in mind: rustic. We wanted to build a space that felt fresh and modern, but also one that fit into our countryside surroundings and stayed true to our small business roots. We were also desperate to do something with all of the pallets that had built up in our warehouse from our solar panel and heat pump deliveries. Thankfully, after being struck by inspiration, we came up with the perfect solution: everyone's favourite buzzword, upcycling!
With our warehouse full of pallets and talented technical staff, it took no time at all for us to start putting our waste wood to good use. By simply fixing it to the wall, giving it a light sanding and a few coats of stain, we transformed our boring old pallet wood into a beautiful feature wall that we feel perfectly embodies the rustic feel that we were aiming for. It was the perfect place to mount our sample solar panel modules, and looks great next to the sleek style of our display Tesla Powerwall unit.
For a long time we've wanted to provide our customers with a comfortable seating area where we can discuss their renewable technology options, but we've just never had the space. But after moving some desks into a different part of the office, we had the newly freed up space instantly pegged for our customer area, and when it came to furniture we knew there was only one way to go: more pallets! We already had some ridiculously comfy chairs picked out, but we didn't want to buy a new table when we were already on a hot pallet wood upcycling streak. So we got back on the tools and put together our own meeting table, which is simply some treated pallet wood fixed to the top of an old Ikea table! Once again, we were very impressed with what you can put together with some recycled materials and a few hours of hard work.
With the office almost finished, all that was left to do was build the furniture and get it in place. Luckily one of our staff members is a furniture-building machine (also known as a man with few hobbies), so it only took a day or two to completely kit the place out, and we are over the moon with the results. The new furniture goes beautifully with the fresh look, and by reorganising all of our workspaces, the whole office now runs smoother than ever.
With the main office completed, we're now moving onto the other two workspaces, which hopefully won't take up quite as many weekends! Safe to say we're chuffed to bits with how it all came together, and even though it took quite a bit of hard work, having such a lovely place to work is definitely worth all the hours we put in. Together with our brand new website, this is just one part of our new strategy to power through 2018 and continue to grow our business and make the South West that little bit greener. We're excited to see what we can accomplish this year!