Stilwell Baker

The house was a mess. After years as a shag-carpeted, wood-paneled, dingy ranchburger house, the structure was severely flooded in the winter of 1996. In 1998, the damaged house was given a new life – being transformed into a wide-open, bright and colorful work environment for a small, high technology firm.


The project’s goals were to give a residential look to the workspace, to showcase the firm’s growing art collection and to have an open feel, while giving selected spaces acoustical privacy.  At the entry, casualness is emphasized in the form of a kitchen with group worktable and a sitting area adjacent to a fireplace. The reception desk is set back behind the reading chairs as are other, more commercial functions.  Principal offices in the rear have all-glass walls.  The glass walls are downplayed as desktops and shelves flow through them. The elliptical forms of the desks (which raise up mechanically) and the retro 50’s form of the kitchen table are set against more orthogonal surfaces to emphasize their forms.


The 10 foot wide sliding conference room door was custom designed and built by the Emmons firm. It is made of aluminum and polycarbonate panels, with rivets and exposed bolts at connections. It overlaps translucent glass panels and a white brick wall, to allow an ever changing play of light and reflections.


Strong, saturated colors were used on selected walls, the entry floor, and in light fixtures to help define space and give the project warmth.