Multi-Family Projects Interior Design Guide: Amenity Spaces

It’s no secret that multi-family projects and apartment living are the way of the future. In Canada, we’ve seen a 9.7% surge in apartment building developments from 2021 to 2022.

In this article, we examine the value of amenity spaces in multi-family complexes and practical design strategies for them. In multi-family housing structures, amenity spaces are the common areas that are utilized by all occupants. They are crucial in improving residents’ quality of life overall, encouraging social contact, and creating a feeling of community. A well-planned amenity area can improve a building’s reputation, enhance property values, and draw in and keep tenants.

Conceptual Rendering: The Press  |  Seattle, WA  |  Interior Design by JDG

For the past 16 years, Janks Design Group (JDG), an established interior design company based in Vancouver, has provided innovative and distinctive spatial design project solutions to the hospitality, restaurant, retail, medical, and corporate industries.

We hold the view that our designs reflect who we are, and vice versa. We have a group of skilled and innovative designers who work together to invent, listen, and build projects to the highest standards. JDG provides clever spatial planning and interior design services to transform commercial properties catered to the requirements of our clients.

We will give a brief summary of the typical amenity areas present in multi-family developments, including gyms, clubhouses, and rooftop decks. We’ll also go over design factors for amenities including functionality, durability, and beauty, as well as how these factors might affect how residents interact with their surroundings as a whole. Read on to see how to boost the potential and rental income of your apartment building project!

Common Amenity Spaces in Multi-Family Real Estate Investing


Amenity spaces are essential in multi-family residential buildings. Different compared to single-family homes, they provide residents with shared spaces to gather, relax, and engage in various activities. In this section, we will provide an overview of common amenity spaces found in multi-family properties and the benefits they offer residents.

Fitness Centres

Fitness centers are popular amenities in multi-family properties as they offer residents a convenient space to exercise and maintain an active lifestyle. A well-designed fitness center can feature various equipment, from cardio machines to weight training, accommodating different fitness levels. The benefits of fitness centers include improved physical health, reduced stress levels, and a sense of community among residents with shared health goals.



Clubhouses are versatile spaces that can serve different purposes, from hosting events to lounging and relaxing. They can also function as coworking spaces for the growing group of individuals who work from home. They often feature comfortable seating, a kitchen area, and entertainment options such as games or TVs. Clubhouses offer residents a space to socialize, connect with neighbours, and build a sense of community.

Rooftop Decks

Rooftop decks provide residents with a unique outdoor space to enjoy the sunshine and fresh air, often with stunning views of the surrounding area. They can feature comfortable seating, barbecue areas, and greenery, creating a relaxing and inviting atmosphere. Rooftop decks offer residents a space to socialize, unwind, and take a break from the busy city below.

Fitness centers, clubhouses, and rooftop decks are popular amenity spaces in multi-family real estate. In tandem, they provide residents with a variety of benefits such as improved physical health, socialization, and a sense of community. Effective design of these amenity spaces is critical to enhancing the overall living experience of residents..

Property Owner Design Considerations For Multi Family Property Amenity Spaces


Conceptual Rendering: Multifamily Project   |   Interior Design by JDG

Designing effective amenity spaces requires consideration of several factors that impact the overall resident experience and even real estate investing. Understanding investment property, we illustrate design considerations for amenity spaces such as functionality, durability, and aesthetics, and how design choices can impact the overall resident experience.


The functionality of amenity spaces is essential to ensure that they meet multifamily housing residents’ needs and are easy to use. Professional designers should consider the purpose of the amenity space and design it to accommodate a range of activities, and an appropriate number of people based on the number of residents in the multifamily property. For example, a fitness center should feature appropriate flooring, dedicated space, and varied equipment to cater to different fitness levels and activities.


Compared to single-family homes, amenity spaces in apartment buildings are high-traffic areas that experience significant wear and tear. Therefore, designers must select durable materials that can withstand heavy use and require minimal maintenance in apartment buildings. For example, using easy-to-clean materials such as vinyl flooring and durable upholstery can extend the life of furniture and finishes.


Aesthetics play a crucial role in amenity spaces, creating a welcoming and inviting atmosphere for residents. Designers should consider the building’s overall design and incorporate complementary colours, textures, and materials. Artwork, lighting, and decorative elements can also enhance the space’s visual appeal and create a cohesive design aesthetic.

Design choices can significantly impact the overall resident experience in amenity spaces. A well-designed amenity space can increase resident satisfaction and retention, while a poorly designed one can lead to frustration and poor tenant retention. For example, overcrowded fitness centers with limited equipment can discourage residents from using the space, while poorly lit clubhouses can create an unwelcoming atmosphere. organic feel.

In summary, functionality, durability, and aesthetics are crucial design considerations for amenity spaces in multi-family projects. Effective design choices can enhance the overall resident experience and create a sense of community within the building.

Fitness Centres

Fitness centers are a popular amenity space in multifamily housing, providing residents with a convenient and accessible space to exercise. When designing fitness centers, designers must consider equipment selection, layout, and lighting to create a functional and inviting space. modern or traditional.

SpinHouse  |  South Surrey, BC  |  Interior Design by JDG

Equipment selection

Fitness centers should feature a range of equipment to accommodate different fitness levels and activities. Cardiovascular equipment, such as treadmills and ellipticals, are commonly found in fitness centers, but designers should also consider including strength training equipment, such as weight machines and free weights. Equipment should be selected for its durability, ease of use, and safety features.

Design Layout

The layout of a fitness center should be designed to accommodate multiple users and ensure adequate space for movement and exercise. Adequate space should be allocated for stretching, warm-up, and cool-down areas. In addition, the layout should allow for clear lines of sight to ensure safety and promote a sense of community among users.


Lighting plays an important role in the functionality and aesthetics of fitness centers. The space should be well-lit to promote safety and allow users to see their surroundings and equipment. Designers can provide some creative solutions for incorporating artificial light in these spaces. In addition, designers should consider incorporating natural light into the space to create a more inviting and energizing atmosphere.

Successful fitness center designs in multi-family projects can enhance the overall resident experience and create a sense of community. For example, the fitness center called The Pearl in Silver Spring, Maryland, features a dedicated yoga and Pilates studio in addition to cardio and strength training equipment.

Design is more than just a business expense. Designing effective fitness centers for an apartment building requires careful consideration of equipment selection, layout, and lighting. Successful designs can enhance the overall experience for tenants and promote a healthy and active lifestyle.


Clubhouses are common amenity areas in multi-family buildings because they give tenants a gathering place for socializing, working, or unwinding. Similar to important design elements for some commercial spaces or even for restaurants, designing clubhouses requires taking into account seating configurations, storage possibilities, and entertainment options in order to produce a welcoming and practical place.

Conceptual Rendering: Multifamily Project   |   Interior Design by JDG

Clubhouses ought to provide a selection of seating options to meet various group sizes and activities. It is best to pair practical seating, like dining tables and workstations, with comfortable seating, like sofas and armchairs. To take use of natural light and vistas, designers should also think about including outside seating areas, like a patio or balcony.

Conceptual Rendering: Multifamily Project   |   Interior Design by JDG

Storage Options

To keep the area tidy and uncluttered, clubhouses should have plenty of storage space. Residents may be given lockers or cubbies to store their possessions, while shared objects like periodicals or board games may be kept in built-in cabinets and shelving.

Entertainment Alternatives

Clubhouse designers should provide entertainment options to create a warm and inviting ambience. Large-screen televisions, pool tables, board games, and even video gaming consoles are examples of this. To promote socialization and entertainment, designers might think about including kitchenettes or bar sections.

A sense of community can be fostered and the experience for tenants can be improved with effective clubhouse designs in multifamily projects. Remember that thoughtful consideration of seating layouts, storage options, and entertainment alternatives is necessary when creating functional clubhouses.

Rooftop Decks

Rooftop decks are a popular amenity space in multi-family projects, providing residents with stunning views and a unique outdoor experience. Designers must carefully consider furniture selection, lighting, and greenery to create a functional and comfortable space for residents to enjoy.

Tap & Barrel – Bridges  |  Granville Island, BC  |  Interior Design by JDG

Furniture selection

When designing rooftop decks, furniture selection is crucial to creating a comfortable and inviting atmosphere. Durable and weather-resistant furniture is essential to withstand outdoor elements, and comfortable seating options, such as lounge chairs and sofas, should be paired with functional seating, such as dining tables and chairs.


Lighting is another important consideration when designing rooftop decks. Proper lighting can enhance the ambiance of the space and create a safe and inviting environment. Lighting options can include string lights, sconces, and even fire pits, which can add warmth and create a cozy atmosphere and encourage residents to use the outdoor space during the evenings as well.


Incorporating greenery is an effective way to create a natural and inviting atmosphere on rooftop decks. Designers can use planters, green walls, or even create rooftop gardens to incorporate greenery into the space. This not only adds beauty but can also help with temperature control and noise reduction.

Successful rooftop deck designs in multi-family projects can provide residents with a unique and memorable outdoor experience. For example, the rooftop deck at The Avery in San Francisco features comfortable lounge seating, fire pits, and lush greenery, creating a peaceful oasis in the middle of the city.

Designing effective rooftop decks requires careful consideration of furniture selection, lighting, and greenery. Successful designs can provide residents with a unique outdoor experience and create a sense of relaxation and tranquility.


It’s not a secret that amenity spaces are a critical component of multifamily housing projects compared to single-family property, providing residents with a sense of community, comfort, and convenience.

The design of these spaces is essential to create an environment that enhances the overall resident experience. Designers must consider functionality, durability, aesthetics, and the specific needs of each amenity space when creating designs that cater to the target market.


Conceptual Rendering: Eagleview Heights   |   Gibsons, BC   |   Interior Design by JDG

As a well-established interior design firm, Janks Design Group has a deep understanding of the importance of amenity spaces in multi-family projects. Our experienced and creative team offers world-class design solutions tailored to the needs of our clients. Whether it’s a fitness center, clubhouse, or rooftop deck, we strive to create spaces that are both functional and aesthetically pleasing, resulting in a memorable resident experience.

If you’re looking for an interior design firm that can create unique and innovative amenity spaces for your multi-family project, choose Janks Design Group. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and let us help you bring your vision to life.


Our Top 4 Wall Treatments for 2023

Interior design must include wall treatments since they provide a room texture, colour, and personality. These top 4 wall treatments for 2023 have been selected by JDG and are the result of fresh design trends that arise with each new year. These cosmetic solutions are not only useful, environmentally friendly, and adaptable for various locations, but they are also aesthetically stunning.

Who we are is how we design; How we design is who we are. This is the guiding principle of the reputable Vancouver-based interior design company JDG. Our team can help you with any interior design project, whether you require appealing and functional restaurant interiors, commercial interiors and more.

The top 4 wall treatments for 2023 will be covered in this blog post along with advice on how to use them in your own home or commercial space.


1. Wallpaper

In recent years, wallpaper has experienced a striking comeback in interior design. Wallpaper, formerly regarded as outmoded, is now a fashionable and adaptable wall decoration that can give any room character, texture, and depth. Wallpaper comes in a variety of styles, from vivid and dramatic designs to refined and subdued textures.

2910 West 47th   |   Photo by: Andrew Fyfe

Wallpaper Materials

Traditional paper wallpaper, vinyl wallpaper, peel-and-stick wallpaper, and textured wallpaper are some examples of popular wallpaper styles. Paper wallpaper comes in a variety of hues and patterns and is manufactured from natural materials. Vinyl wallpaper is long-lasting and simple to maintain, making it perfect for high-traffic areas like kitchens and hallways. For renters or people who want to alter their decor frequently, peel-and-stick wallpaper is a practical and transient solution. A room may feel snug and inviting by using textured wallpaper to provide depth and richness.


When incorporating wallpaper into your home decor, it’s crucial to think about the room’s overall design and pick a wallpaper that goes well with it. Wallpaper can be applied to all walls or just one wall to make a statement. It’s crucial to pay attention to the wallpaper pattern’s magnitude and make sure it complements the dimensions of the room. Overall, wallpaper is a great approach to give your home décor in 2023 a distinctive and personalized touch.


2. Textured Walls

Textured walls are a great way to give space depth and visual appeal. They can add to the coziness of a space, enhancing its comfort and friendliness. Furthermore, textured walls can aid in hiding flaws like cracks or uneven surfaces that might be challenging to cover up with conventional wall treatments.

Plaster, stucco, stone, and wood are a few of the numerous options for textured wall coverings. The traditional material of plaster can be used in a variety of ways to produce a range of textures, from polished and smooth to rough and gritty. Stucco is a popular material for achieving a look with a Spanish or Mediterranean influence, and it can be tinted to go with any colour scheme. Stone and wood may be utilized to build accent walls or entire rooms, and they are excellent for giving a place a natural and organic feel.

2910 West 47th   |   Photo by: Andrew Fyfe

It’s important to take into account the room’s general design when introducing textured walls into your home decor and pick a texture that goes well with it. Living rooms, bedrooms, or home offices are good examples of spaces where textured walls work well since they require a little bit of warmth or character. They can be put on all the walls for a more unified appearance or utilized as an accent wall. When selecting a textured wall treatment, it’s also crucial to take lighting into account because shadows and highlights can enhance the overall look.

Dandy’s Artisan Ice Cream   |   Photo by: Andrew Fyfe

3. Mural Walls

In 2023, mural walls will be a common trend in interior design. They are a daring and distinctive approach to incorporating art into a room and providing a statement piece that can completely change the appearance of the room. Mural walls are a versatile alternative for any home décor style because they can be realistic or abstract, modern or traditional.

OEB Ambleside  |   Photo by: Lawrence Lu

From hand-painted murals to digitally printed wallpaper murals, there are many different kinds to choose from! Hand-painted murals are a unique choice that may be tailored to the particular style and colour scheme of the room. Digital wallpaper murals are a more practical and economic alternative because they are simple to apply to a wall and take down when no longer needed. Peel-and-stick mural solutions are also available, which are ideal for renters or people who constantly change their designs.

When incorporating mural walls into your home decor, it’s crucial to pick one that goes well with the room’s general design. The mural’s size and placement should also be taken into account because they can significantly affect the ambience of the room. While a smaller mural in a soft tone can bring a unique touch to a place without overpowering it, a larger mural on a central wall can provide drama and depth to a room.


4. Painted Walls

With countless colour possibilities and finishes, painted walls are still a classic in-home décor that will never go out of style.

There are many different painted wall treatments available, including textured paint and glossy, matte, and glossy-like finishes. Glossy finishes can lend a bit of elegance and glitz to a space, while matte finishes are a popular choice for a modern and professional appearance. Walls can have depth and appeal thanks to textured paint, which also gives them a distinctive and individualized touch.

It’s crucial to pick colours that go with the general design of the room when introducing painted walls into your home decor. Bolder colours can give space energy and individuality, while neutral colours are a popular choice for a timeless and traditional design. When selecting paint colours, it’s also crucial to take the room’s lighting into account because both natural and artificial light can change how colours appear on walls.

In general, painted walls are an adaptable and personalizable choice for interior design in 2023. Painted walls may be customized to any design and can provide a unique touch to any space because of the variety of colours, finishes, and textures that are readily accessible.

Conclusion On 2023 Wall Treatments

After its resurgence in recent years, wallpaper has become a chic and versatile wall decoration. A room can benefit from having textured walls, which can be composed of plaster, stucco, stone, or wood. While painted walls offer various colour options and finishes, mural walls offer a statement piece that may completely alter the appearance of a space. Mixed media walls blend various wall coverings to provide a one-of-a-kind and customized design.

We can assist you with any interior design project, whether you require appealing and functional restaurant interiors, commercial, home interiors, and more. Don’t forget to contact our team at JDG for help with wall treatments.

How Traditional Design is Making a Comeback – In A Modern Way

5 Traditional Interior Design Elements Making a Comeback in a Modern Way

It’s no secret that the world is gravitating toward sustainability. When it comes to interior design, the same holds true. More and more people are consciously seeking ways to reduce waste while still creating spaces that hold true to their personalities and style. This has led to a comeback of classic design trends, but with a modern twist. Let’s look at some of the top design elements making a comeback in residential interior design.


1. Antique and Vintage Furniture

Yard sales and antiquing were a big thing back in the 90s. There was no Kijiji, or Facebook Marketplace allowing people to find treasures from the comfort of their homes. If they wanted something, they simply had to go out and look for it. For many, it was never about finding one specific item, but more centered around the idea that you never knew just what you might find.

As antique and refurbished furniture have become more popular in an effort to move toward sustainable interior design, we’re seeing a resurgence of these activities, though perhaps in a more modern way. Not everyone held on to their parent’s or grandparent’s “old” furniture, but more people are wishing they had! Online antiquing, anyone?

Interior designers are pairing traditional pieces with contemporary elements, such as a beautiful antique chandelier with a modern, sleek-lined dining set. Or classic, bold patterned chairs with clean, modern wall colours. You may even find that an antique desk or table paired with a modern chair gives you just the balance you’re looking for.


2. Maximalism

Minimalism has been a popular trend for some time now, but maximalism, popular with the Victorians who made a habit of collecting and displaying many exquisite objects around their homes, is making a comeback. Maximalism is a form of self-expression, creating spaces that are filled with fun patterns, bright colours, and odd-shaped furniture that fit the homeowner’s unique personality. Quite the opposite of the less is more trend, a traditional maximalist would say that more is always more. So how is maximalism making a comeback in a modern way?

Modern day maximalism tends to focus creative expression into one aspect of a room, whether that be a feature wall with bright wallpaper, or bold patterned furniture. The key is to keep the remaining elements of the design clean and sleek. A floral-patterned sofa, for instance, could act as a feature in a room with clean walls and less flashy armchairs.


3. Natural Materials

Natural materials have always been a staple used by all interior design services. Humans have an innate desire to commune with nature, so it only makes sense that adding natural elements to our living space would be a popular trend, especially at a time when activities like hiking, nature walks, and forest bathing are at an all time high.

Also known as biophilic design – incorporating concepts from nature into man-made environments – wood, clay, stone, wicker, rattan, and wool can bring warmth and interest to any room, and adding plants to an indoor space not only helps to purify the air, but studies have shown them to have a calming effect, boosting the well-being of those around them. Wood accents are especially popular, with paneling used to create feature walls, or wood baffles adding interest to a ceiling while creating a modern, clean look. Natural stone is no longer confined to the countertops. Whether river rock or polished marble, stone used for coffee tables, backsplashes, or decorative vases are sure to make a statement.


4. Dark Wood Finishes

After years of clean, white, minimalist design, homeowners are craving more comfort and warmth in their spaces, and the use of rich, elegant, dark wood tones is doing the trick.

Use these dark wood finishes for accent pieces, such as bookshelves or your dining table. Don’t be afraid to give them a prominent spot in your home. The key to keeping this style modern? Pair these dark, moody wood finishes with sleek, white tones. The contrast between the two will give you a warm, but elegant vibe you’re sure to love.


5. Asymmetrical Layouts

No longer are people buying matching furniture sets, but instead are making the most of their vintage finds by combining them with modern pieces for a mismatched, asymmetrical interior design.

There are some guidelines to follow when creating an asymmetrical look with a modern flair. Though your décor pieces may be unique and mis-matched, repeating a chosen colour as a theme throughout the space will do wonders to tie it all together. As an example, you may choose to use two different vintage nightstands on either side of your bed but refurbish them with the same paint colour or stain to create a more curated look. Or, choose one colour from the floral chair you love, and extend it throughout the room with throw pillows and blankets, bringing all your unique pieces into harmony.



A common theme among these new trends is the celebration of individualism. As you may have heard it said regarding social media content, it’s ok if your home looks like you live there. Traditional trends are making a way for personality to shine through while still maintaining a modern feel.

If you need a hand with your interior space, don’t hesitate to contact us. With our expert team of Vancouver based interior designers, we can help bring your favourite traditional trends to life in a modern way.



5 Key Questions to Ask When Choosing a Commercial Interior Design Firm

The 5 Questions you Should Ask Commercial Interior Designers

Finding the right commercial interior design team can feel like hiring a new employee of your own, and it is most definitely just as important. Does their design vision align with what you and your company want? Are you both on the same page? What services do they offer?

Just like hiring an employee, you want to ensure the commercial interior design team you hire is the right fit for your business. Whether you own a quiet dentist’s office, a coffee shop franchise or a bustling restaurant downtown, designers should be working to improve your business first and foremost.

Below are five questions you should ask while interviewing commercial interior designers to determine if they’re the right fit.


How does the commercial interior design team/firm decide which projects are best for them?

This is the designer equivalent of asking a potential employee: “why do you think this role is right for you?”

A commercial interior designer who evaluates your business and project will share their priorities with you. This will illustrate how they handle projects, their services, communication style, personality, design strategy, and other elements. The commercial interior design process can take a few months, or even a year depending on the project, so it’s important that the experience is smooth for everyone involved.


Does the commercial interior design firm have experience in your industry?

Asking what a design team’s existing and past clients were will give you insight into what industries they serve. An experienced commercial interior design team can mention a number of projects off-hand, procure a list and even link you to their past projects or client testimonials.

While interviewing design firms, ensure you review each portfolio carefully. This is like the commercial interior designer’s resume. Previous experience will give you and other decision-makers a clearer sense of what they do and their results.

Don’t hesitate to view projects that are similar to your business. For example, at Janks Design Group, our past projects include businesses such as bars, restaurants, new condo developments, dentistry, homes, ice cream parlours and more!


What was a past mistake they made with a project? How did they handle it and what were the takeaways?

You’ve likely heard or asked this question before in an interview. Working with a commercial interior designer requires trust and the ability to problem solve on the spot. It’s important to learn what the design team has learned from previous mistakes and what their response is if something goes awry.

Commercial interior designers may have preventative measures in place to mitigate past issues. For instance, a team could have close connections to reliable contractors and tradespeople and provide immediate solutions without charge if anything doesn’t go according to plan.


What is their approach to Project Management?

An experienced commercial interior design team should have a systematic approach for your type of business. Breaking down each phase of the project should be communicated to you early on to avoid confusion and surprises.

Phase one should include a strategy, plan, timeframe and accurate cost analysis. Expenses should be negotiated before unexpected expenses arise for the client. Ask if the quote outlines any logistics outside of interior design. Costs like additional consultants, changes during construction, permit fees and more should be discussed prior to signing off on a commercial interior design project.

We ensure to share our process openly with our clients at Janks Design Group.


Are they Communicative and Responsive to you? Do they prefer client involvement?

Good communication is never underrated, especially while working with a commercial interior design company. Working with a design firm is more than selecting paint colours and materials, it’s a two-way conversation about your company’s vision, branding, culture, values and goals. It shouldn’t surprise you that these building blocks of your company influence your interior design.

Having a contact who’s accessible to your firm and who comfortably addresses problems will help you achieve your design goals. At JDG, we communicate using presentations, 3D models, detailed floorplans, specification packages, material boards and more. This allows our clients to review the design before any construction so we can make any changes if necessary. It is MUCH easier (and less expensive) to make a change early in the design phase, rather than amidst construction.

If you’re looking for a commercial interior design team for your business, then don’t forget to reach out to us and see if we’re the right design company for you!


Our Top Tips for Restaurant Design

Did you know that finding a way to improve your customer reviews by only a half star can result in a revenue boost of up to 9%?

Considering this, why not focus on your restaurant’s interior design to give your ratings a boost?

The success of a restaurant doesn’t depend solely on food. At JDG, we can guide you through the process of designing an incredible restaurant – from initial inspiration to permitting and construction.

Here are some of our top restaurant interior design tips to help you think outside the box.



Design a Detailed & Efficient Layout


Although it’s tempting, don’t start ripping apart anything just yet!

The first step is to develop a layout that is functional and efficient for both guests and staff. This restaurant interior design cheat sheet will be a great tool to help you plan out your restaurant. For example, most restaurants locate their washrooms away from the entry and windows, closer to the kitchen and back of the restaurant. This ensures your guests get to enjoy the natural lighting and view from windows.

A detailed and efficient layout will also help customers and servers move freely about your restaurant. This can be a constant challenge depending on how much space you have on your floor plan. Overall, the layout is the foundation of the design process and of your restaurant’s success – both design and functionality wise.

OEB Breakfast Co, Burnaby, B.C / Photo by: Christine Pienaar Photography / Design by: JDG



Thoughtful Lighting & Colour Selection


Lighting and colour selection is a vital element of restaurant interior design. You should involve both natural and artificial light to capture the essence of your establishment, and strategically select colours that boost the appetite and mood of your guests.

Creating a perfect balance of lighting levels can help influence our moods, emotions and feelings. Studies have shown that brighter light can intensify our emotions while lower light keeps them steady.

Here are some quick tips on how colours affect our brains and moods:

  • Blue: lowers high blood pressure and calms us down. Portrays trust, loyalty, wisdom, intelligence, truth, water and tranquility.
  • Green: Green stimulates muscles, bones and more. For restaurant interior design, it portrays nature, growth, wealth, health, harmony, and calmness.
  • Purple: reduces emotional and mental stress. Portrays royalty, power, luxury, dignity, romance and creativity.
  • Red: red is a powerful colour that portrays love, warmth, energy, excitement, leadership, intensity and courage.
  • Orange: this is a colour of creative ideas. It helps portray happiness, energy, enthusiasm, change, and stimulation.
  • Yellow: Yellow is portrayed as a happy colour. It helps us be cheery, optimistic, and energetic but it also brings emotions like caution, hunger, and attentiveness.
  • White: portrays cleanliness, space, coolness, and neutrality.

Dandy’s Artisan Icecream, Regina, SK / Photo by: Andrew Fyfe Photography / Design by: JDG




Select the Right Flooring


Flooring is another critical component of restaurant interior design. There are several choices for flooring – from hardwood, synthetic and more – but you should consider the following features:

  • Safety: Try to get non-slip flooring options and anti-slip coating for customers and staff.
  • Sound Absorption: Noise-dampening floors (like vinyl or wood) can combat this common problem in restaurants.
  • Durability: Wear and tear are expected in restaurants with frequent spills and foot traffic. Tile floors are much more durable, resist wear, and have an aesthetic appeal.
  • Maintenance: Flooring that is easy to clean and maintain is helpful to consider in your restaurant interior design. Concrete requires the least amount of maintenance whereas hardwood is easy to clean but requires regular waxing.

If you’re interested in discussing the many flooring options out there, don’t hesitate to reach out to an expert at JDG.

Tap & Barrel Bridges, Vancouver, B.C / Design by: Tap & Barrel and JDG




Be True to You: Show off Your Brand


Is your bistro a local hole-in-the-wall with lots of charm, character and history? Or is your restaurant modern and sophisticated, serving the bustling business worker community?’

No matter what your brand values are, you don’t want to throw your guests off. Tablecloths and chandeliers will feel out of place at a college brunch joint for example.

Check out this restaurant’s interior design example in Brentwood. The owner wanted customers to walk into a fresh farmhouse as they entered this brunch establishment. By incorporating some raw materials and subtle barn elements, we were able to illustrate the brand’s grassroots values to every customer at OEB Breakfast Co.

Ask yourself: What do you want your customers to feel and remember about your restaurant?

If you need help or more inspiration, you can see our other restaurant interior design examples on our project page.




The Most Creative Layout & Design Ideas for an Open Plan Office

Why Office & Interior Layout Design Matters

The office is your team’s second home. Your team’s lives are connected to the work they accomplish alone and with their team members in the office.

Office interior design and layout do affect everyone in the workplace. Unfortunately, open plans have shown negative employee experiences in recent studies, especially in the realms of noise and privacy.

It begs the question: Is there an open office layout plan that works well for everyone?

At JDG, we believe there is a solution. This is why we’ve explored several inspirational office layouts which are both creative and functional for your team.



Assess Your Team’s Workspace Needs Via Survey

Let’s not put the cart before the horse and assume everyone is wanting an open plan right away. Understanding what your team’s roles are and how they are productive should influence your decision on a concept.

A quick survey via Survey Monkey or a Google Form will help guide your decision on your office layout design. Here is an example of a question you may include:

Ask your team: What percentage of your time is spent on the following?

  • Quiet Tasks (done alone)
  • Collaborating with team members
  • Phone calls and/or virtual meetings
  • In-person meetings

Examining the results will tell you which jobs and personalities are more suited for open office layout designs than others. Workers that spend a higher percentage of time on quiet tasks and the phone will best be suited to a private layout for example.


Choosing an Office Layout Design Concept

After understanding your team’s needs, it’s time to pick a creative concept that works! New ideas are easy to find and visualize, but breathing life into those Pinterest concepts is another task entirely.

Before going down that route, let’s explore a few of our favourite contemporary office layout design options below.


Newsroom Style Office

Best suited for: A team that prefers to be fast-paced and collaborative. If communication and impromptu meetings are your team’s needs, look no further than this office layout design. This works perfectly if your team has some flex time to have meetings, brainstorming sessions and conversations.

Features: Clusters of desks, an open space and flexible seating options

How to Implement:

  • Keep desks together. Make office layout designs based on clusters of desks and tables.
  • Remove cubicles and any room dividers.
  • Provide flexible and comfortable seating options like sofas and bean seats while still supplying ergonomic office chairs.


Artistic Creative Loft

Best suited for: A creative, intellectual team that focuses time on visual work. In this open office layout design, team members can collaborate alongside each other, adding a myriad of pictorial perspectives to projects. Encouraging open ideas by adding whiteboards along the office’s perimeter will encourage the flow of ideas. Your team can find inspiration from one another, even if they’re working on separate tasks.

Features: Extended, colourful gallery desks, whiteboards and abstract art.

How to Implement: Start by thinking like your office space is an art classroom and push individual desks together – or close by – and form horizontal rows. Gather whiteboards, pieces of art, wall graphics, and plants and set them in the main work area. You can also gather input from your team of creatives to customize the design. Print and frame a few extra graphics made by you, the company or your team and place them around the office as a sign of pride and to reflect your imaginative values.



Best of “Booth” Worlds: A Hybrid Office Layout Design

Best suited for: A team with a more dynamic style. This is the layout design choice that best caters to a team that values individual privacy as well as team collaboration. It’s a balanced solution that addresses the pros and cons of open plans, clusters, and cubicles.

If your team has a diverse set of work preferences, conflicting tasks, and requires just moderate amounts of collaboration, this is often the best choice possible. Hybrid office layout design plans can be adjusted around staff work-from-home preferences.

Features: Hybrid office layout designs vary greatly. There’ll be individual and team-oriented workstations present.

How to Implement: You’ll often need a larger workspace (in square feet) to cater to each employee’s work style. They often feature some open aspects like worktables, meeting rooms, and open coffee lounges with sofas and plants. Private areas can include partitioned individual workstations with headphones and even fully soundproof office booths for deep focus.

Hybrid offices are the most customizable and easy to change. They grant employee autonomy on how to work and improve employee productivity, mood and satisfaction by catering to needs.


If you need a hand with a Hybrid office layout design or any other office design concept, don’t forget to reach out to the pros at JDG!


The Top 5 Principles of Sustainable Interior Design

Isn’t it shocking that buildings consume 40% of our worldwide energy?

It’s no secret that people are considering energy-efficient and sustainable interior design options for a greener future. We’re noticing a sharp increase in our clients here at JDG who want to incorporate sustainable principles in their homes and workspaces.

Are you considering unique and sustainable interior design for your home or business? We’ve made a convenient list for you that outlines a few of the most important principles of sustainable design for your interior space.

1. Interior Design with Energy Efficient Options

Becoming less dependent on fossil fuels is more pressing than ever before. We know that heating and lighting are the highest contributors to energy efficiency that interior designers have control over.

Improving your interior space will result in direct energy savings. For example, converting to LED bulbs can save up to 50% on your lighting bill. They produce roughly 85% less energy compared to incandescent bulbs on the same lighting level.

Windows are remarkable for natural lighting but are also notorious places for your indoor heat to escape. Interior designers can ensure windows are double-glazed so heat loss is mitigated by nearly half. Installing stylish curtains or drapes on your windows can help keep your space cozy in the colder months while keeping the sun’s heat out during the summer.

Did you know that carpets are also estimated to retain nearly 10% of a room’s heat? Consider using carpeting or area rugs in spaces you want to stay warmer, such as the bedroom or your living room.


2. Design with Flexibility & Longevity

Serviceable materials and products are discarded far too often.

Our interior designers at JDG evaluate the lifespan of a chosen material that we plan to use in your space.

Design elements that are heavily used – like flooring – should be durable and timeless in sustainable interior design. Thinking practically and choosing an enduring design that’s high quality and classy – like bamboo or reclaimed hardwood – will help increase its longevity.

Your life changes. You move into a new home, you may have kids, adopt pets, and even host events with your friends and family. Your space shouldn’t remain stagnant; it should evolve alongside you and your life.

Innovative ideas have brought a plethora of options in flexible interior design. Some perfect examples of flexible design include:

  • Modified walls
  • Mobile Furniture
  • Modular flooring

Trendy modular carpets are simply pieced together. If an area of the flooring is ever damaged, all you have to do is replace a single square!


3. Using Natural Materials Responsibly

Using non-polluting and abundant products is a common practice of sustainable interior design.

Although lumber may be an answer that’s top of mind, interior designers must consider how ethically it is sourced. Thankfully, there are easy ways to tell. An FSC label on the product will signify that the wood is organically and ethically sourced.

If you’re wanting ethically sourced lumber, there are three different FSC labels to be aware of:

FSC 100%: Products originate from FSC-Certified forests
FSC Recycled: The product is only from reclaimed material
FSC Mixed: at least 70% of the wood comes from FSC-Certifed or recycled material.

Fast-growing bamboo is another great lumber alternative to use for interior design. Bamboo forests grow much faster and are harvested sustainably. Depending on the application, coated and treated bamboo can easily last at least 10-12 years in your space



4. Improving Indoor Air Quality

It’s staggering that the US Environmental Protection Agency considers indoor air pollution in the top 5 biggest environmental threats. Living with optimal air quality is imperative for sustainable interior design.

Volatile Organic Compounds (or VOCs) are known to cause poor indoor air quality. These solvents can be found in certain types of paints or products. Our interior designers opt for eco-friendly water-based paints which don’t contain any VOCs. You can rest easy at home or even at work in your home office with better air quality.

Greenery will always freshen up your indoor living or working space. Indoor plants are aesthetically pleasing while they purify the air around you. Popular choices for indoor arborists include peace lilies, spider plants, snake plants, monkey trees, rubber plants and succulents.


5. Harbouring a Low Impact & Low Waste Mentality

Interior designers have a lot of say on what materials to use to mitigate waste. We know the planet’s resources are dwindling and limited.

Designers are highly aware of current sustainable interior design thinking and practices. New trends here to stay are recycling, upcycling and repurposing. For example, upcycling is when an unwanted piece is repurposed and reused. Picture an aimless piece of driftwood washed up on the beach. Imagine if it could be cleaned and beautifully stained into a distinctive shelf or coffee table?

Our interior designers can be creative with functional pieces and find ways to grant them new life. Today, at least 2.5 million tons of textiles are recycled annually. Sustainable materials for interior spaces include recycled polyester for drapes and upholstery.



That sums up our top 5 list of sustainable interior design elements to consider for your next project.

Do you need a hand with your interior space? Don’t hesitate to contact us and our expert team of interior designers can certainly help turn your space eco-friendly and sustainable for years to follow.


The Most Important Elements of Commercial Interior Design

Have you ever thought to yourself “what does my business space look like to other people? What sort of impression do they get by looking at it and being in it?”.

Whatever establishment you enter, whether it be a hotel, restaurant, or office branch, your brain forms a general impression of the area by its design. It’s common for business owners to be so consumed by other business matters to barely consider these simple queries. Your commercial interior design is immensely important to your potential customers, existing customers and even your employees!

Our team at JDG would like to share a number of the most important elements of commercial interior design with you. This is for you to regard while considering any possible future redesign plans.


Your Available Space


Without understanding the essentials of your available space, other design elements and ideas can fall apart. Your available space is the foundation of commercial interior design. A professional designer must be aware of the square footage, dimensions and utilities. Remember your space refers to wall and ceiling height as well, not just the floor (Length x Width).

Similar to not wanting to overload a new apartment space with too much furniture, understanding your commercial space will help guide your design plan.



Your Lighting Options


Incorporating both natural and artificial lighting is a must-have for commercial spaces. People are naturally drawn to warmly lit spaces and it plays a huge factor in commercial interior design. Depending on the lighting used, you can make areas feel smaller and intimate or larger and unrestricted.

Lighting comes in the forms of natural and artificial light. Natural lighting refers to sunlight which can come through windows, skylights, or glass shields. Artificial lighting is produced by any light source that uses energy (Fireplaces, ceiling lights etc.). This type of lighting can be remarkably effective in creating a certain mood or atmosphere. For example, an office space would use a vastly different source of artificial lighting than a fancy restaurant with outdoor seating. The former would be suited for more task-oriented lighting to keep employees alert and focused, whereas the latter may use a subtle, warmer tone for customers under the night sky.



Choosing Your Colours


Selecting the right colours and patterns can make your commercial space unique and come to life. For commercial interior design, colours are chosen to follow a company’s theme and help stimulate the feelings of a brand.

Colour theory has been studied extensively by designers. Different colours provoke various emotions and reactions. Here are some examples of a few colours and their common associations.

  • Red: Red is a hot colour. It has a range of ties from violence, danger and fire, to importance, passion and love. This colour can become overwhelming quickly if overused in design.
  • Orange: Snappy and energetic, orange can be associated with autumn, creativity and change. It’s also related to health and wellness because of the familiar fruit with the same name.
  • Yellow: Joyous and playful, it’s widely considered the brightest colour. It can be associated with cowardice and caution but also happiness, youth and hope.
  • Green: Green is often associated with harmony and nature. It’s used in design elements related to stability, wealth, eco-friendliness, and renewal.
  • Blue: A popular colour, blue can mean a lot depending on its shade. Dark blue represents stability, security, strength, spirituality and reliability. Light blues are more relaxed, whereas bright blues are viewed as refreshing.
  • Purple: Purple is attributed to traits seen in blues and reds, plus creativity and imagination. The colour used to be expensive to obtain, which makes purple highly associated with luxury, royalty and sophistication.
  • Neutral Colours: Black, grey, white, brown and tan are considered neutral colours and are effective as backdrops in designs. They can also be used on their own to create stunning design layouts. Black portrays elegance, power, mystery and formality whereas white is associated with purity, virtue, health and cleanliness.



Adding Technology to Your Commercial Space


Your business relies on several pieces of technology to operate. Retailers, offices and restaurants use computers for communication, checkouts, and other work functions.

Commercial interior designers understand the importance of space functionality. They have the experience to seamlessly implement your business’ technology into the design. You may need proper pod areas for computer work or perhaps projectors and media players for board rooms. Ensure your design plan considers everyone using the space including employees, guests and customers.



Is it Time for a Commercial Interior Design Remodel?

After reading this article, you should get a basic grasp of commercial interior design. How do you feel about your own company’s design? Do you think your commercial space may need a fresh redesign?

We’d like to be a partner in the process with you. Feel free to reach out to us at JDG for a free consultation.

If you work in an office and want more advice on design pointers, make sure to see our previous blog on office interior design trends to transform your space.


5 Dos & Don’ts for Bedroom Interior Design

Common Bedroom Interior Design Mistakes & Solutions

1. Choosing Loud Colours

It’s tempting to put your favourite bold and vibrant colours in the bedroom, but they’re best left to other areas of the home. Choosing bold and primary colours disturbs your sleep patterns. A recent blog by Casper demonstrates that some of the worst bedroom interior design colours are red, orange, dark purple, dark brown, and black. Red, for example, is a high-energy colour with an extremely powerful pigment which is said to provoke feelings of anger. Orange is said to have similar impacts, but is more related to high energy and excitement, making it difficult to relax and sleep.


Solution: Use Relaxing Colour Palettes & Bold Colours for Accents Only

Choosing a colour palette with shades that make you feel more relaxed, secure and content is best for your sleep. Which colours do you naturally think of? Most people think of blues, greens, light pinks, whites, and beiges. Blue is commonly imagined when people envision a calm environment. A study by Travelodge demonstrated that homes with blue bedrooms had better sleep compared to homes with other colours. Greens are another top contender that symbolizes serenity. A great interior bedroom design tip is to add indoor plants to your bedroom, even if you go with a gentle white or a more neutral beige palette.

It’s alright if you still want bold colours for your bedroom interior design. As a compromise, it could be a good idea to use these colours elsewhere in the room. Try some purple blankets, loud pillows, a bold comforter on the bed, an art piece, or another paint colour on an accent wall.



2. Overlooking Storage & Furniture Size

Bedrooms can get cluttered very quickly. Buying furniture that is too large is another common bedroom interior design mistake. This is commonly overlooked because it’s easy to overestimate the room’s size by not knowing the bedroom’s floor plan or not having a measured drawing of the space on hand. Sometimes, the furniture selected, such as decorative nightstands and desks, don’t come with ample storage space.


Solution: Focus on Space & Essentials First

Bedrooms should look clean, cozy, and elegant. Give yourself space to move while considering your bedroom interior design. A good rule of thumb is to leave at least 3 feet between the bed and side walls and at least 2 feet between low furniture.

Try to focus on only the essentials first. A bed, a couple of nightstands, a dresser for your clothes, and a small desk may be all you need. If your bedroom is bigger, you’ll have the luxury to fill out the space with larger pieces like small cabinets or an armoire. Keeping the space less busy and chaotic will help you relax. Don’t forget that’s what the room is ultimately for.



3. Ignoring the Ceiling

The bedroom ceiling is the largest empty surface of your room. Designers often refer to it as “the fifth wall”. A typical error in bedroom interior design is to throw a simple light up top and not think twice about the ceiling.


Solution: Consider Optional Ceiling Fixtures & Painting Tricks

Your ceiling is an untapped space that can add a special, personalized touch to your bedroom. Remember, nobody says that chandeliers are solely meant for just the dining room or front foyer. If you do select a chandelier for your bedroom, try to consider what style your room will have and whether it’ll be more traditional, natural or contemporary to match.

Another bedroom interior design trick is to paint the ceiling a lighter version of the wall colour. What this does is help visually lower the ceiling to evoke a feeling of intimacy and comfort. Further ceiling customization options may include wallpapers, beams, mouldings or decorative paint treatments.



4. Forgetting Artwork & Greenery

After considering the essentials, a big mistake is not incorporating any artistic or natural elements to make the room unique and natural. Not incorporating artwork or greenery can make your room feel ordinary, dull, or even claustrophobic.

Solution: Add Thematic Art & Recommended Indoor Plants

Bedroom wall art gives your room a unique, expressive touch. Depending on your budget, you may go for higher end original art or less expensive art print. Think about what tone or theme you’d like your art to emit. Going for mystery and curiosity? Consider picking up a piece of abstract wall art to position above the bed or desk. Wall art can also help build contrast with vibrant tones compared to your wall colours, so have fun and experiment!

Plants can do wonders for bedroom interior design. As green is a symbol of nature and serenity, plants will evoke the same feeling in your bedroom. They also assist with cleaning and purifying the air for you. Some of the best plants to include are snakeplants, which are low maintenance and even convert CO2 to oxygen at night (most plants do so during the day only). Other noteworthy options for houseplants include heart leaf philodendrons, English ivys, aloe veras, and spider plants.



5. Disregarding Mood Lighting & Multiple Lighting Options

You’re going to want a relaxing place to start and end your long day. A common mistake is to rely on a single light in a bedroom and not include other lighting options like lamps, accent, adjustable or ambient light.

Solution: Explore Your Lighting Needs Based on your Activities

There are a plethora of lighting options to consider for your bedroom interior design. A great idea is a lamp with a moveable arm for reading in bed. If you’re using intense lights with higher lux levels, they have been shown to suppress melatonin, a hormone that helps you get to sleep. Instead, try installing lights with an adjustable dimmer to allow your eyes and body to adjust to the bedtime phase.

Design by: JDG // Photo by: Christine Pienaar Photography


The key takeaway is to use various lightsources based on what you need throughout the day. Whether that’s reading or checking your phone in bed at night, watching a movie, or getting ready in the morning, make sure you have lamps, window treatments, and a comfortable overhead light so you can recharge yourself each day.














Creative Ways to Use Artificial Lighting in Your Commercial Space

Light surrounds and affects us every single day. Both natural and artificial lighting contribute to our comfort, vision and our ability to be productive.

From busy retail stores to productive office spaces, setting up artificial lighting in an establishment can be a time-consuming endeavour. We’d like to arm you with some creative solutions here at JDG so you can brainstorm some innovative artificial lighting solutions for your company.

Over the past decade, lighting has shifted to primarily LED-type fixtures to be more energy-efficient, environmentally friendly and much more cost-effective in the long run. Let’s go over some methods you can use to use to boost artificial lighting in your business.


A customer is much more likely to be attracted to a retail store that illuminates and showcases its product in a flattering way. A dim interior may create a sense of mystery, but would ultimately diminish the display and showcasing of a product. Ambient lighting refers to the artificial lighting that evenly illuminates the general space. This is the base of a successful lighting design. You don’t want customers to have difficulty reading your signs and products in a retail space if it’s too dim. A dark space will also emanate an unsafe atmosphere to customers. Conversely, having lighting that’s too overwhelming and powerful will create discomfort for prolonged periods of time.

There are some simple solutions to these problems. Having natural lighting to complement your artificial lighting will save costs and additionally, it will make your space feel roomy, unique and welcoming. Make sure to exploit natural light as much as possible and add windows to the southernmost section of your commercial space to allow sunlight in.

One caveat of this is that natural lighting won’t always be constant. To amplify natural and artificial lighting, keep in mind what tone and gloss of paint your space has. Glossy, white paint tends to amplify light, whereas dull and darker tones absorb it. You can also augment the space with recessed lighting. This way, each light emits a cone to allow no dark spots or unlit areas. There are great low voltage bulbs on the market that can accomplish this. If you’re looking for an eye-catching lighting method, we recommend using LED light strips to create and illuminate various features throughout your space. These focal points can add a great amount of interest to an otherwise plain wall.


If you have more of an office-like space, you will want your lighting to keep your employees focused for the workday. The brightness and colour (warm vs cold) of the lighting will have a significant impact on workers’ productivity. Artificial lighting that’s in the middle of the spectrum from orange, yellow, green and blue, are proven to be better for efficiency and focus. Again, having some daylight will always help and will relax the mind while helping the brain refresh from hours of computer screen time. Diffused natural light will also lessen eye strain.


Adding decorative artificial lighting to your space will transform it from utilitarian to unique. Decorative lighting usually has some illumination to it but is mainly focused on the display factor. You can invoke powerful feelings with these lights such as nostalgia and can be used as a tool to further the design concept.

Classic track lights allow for flexible lighting and can make products pop when used for illuminating displays in a certain area. Wall lights and sconces are a strong choice for mood lighting. Sconce lights are much softer and produce more shadows. They can envelop an intimate, timeless atmosphere, such as having a romantic dinner out or walking the sidewalks of a century-old downtown street. If your business has tables, decorative pendant lights are a must-have. They create “islands of light”, which are great for separated group tables. There are several classic and more ambitious designs to choose from, all depending on if you’re looking to make your space look clean or dazzling.

Sculptural lighting pieces are trendy in modern design. From illuminated wrapping ropes, flowing waves, and jagged lightning zig-zags, there are limitless options to explore for artificial light sculptures. These shapes are best in very open rooms, as they draw attention but do not obstruct people. Great areas for these are lobbies, high office ceilings, in the middle of restaurants, and in recreation spaces.


Considering what mood you want to envelop in your space is a good place to start. Do you want something elegant, jaw-dropping and dramatic or timeless and soothing?

Having a consultation with a JDG Interior Designer will widen your horizons if your business needs an artificial lighting facelift. They can help you experiment with colours and lighting to ensure your space is illuminated successfully based on your specific business needs. Whether you need to showcase a product, set an ambience, or keep employees feeling their best and focused, JDG interior designers can help you to develop a successful lighting plan.