Time to live differently. Our 5 ways to design to a different tune.

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Companies and designers have to keep challenging their designs to remain contemporary: a challenge that requires alternative approaches and thinking.

With some insight into what RAW is up to, here are our top 5 ways to get in tune with ‘different’:

1. Have an opposite day.

Used to tackling your design process in a specific way? Say, at a desk with all your stationery or on the floor with papers scattered around you? Get your inspiration flowing in other ways, avoid your comforts.

Go outside and document your design inspiration in a different way. Always drawing? Take photos. Used to photos? Get drawing. Make, paint, write, ask outsiders their views, build models. Different perspectives get the wheels turning, allow yourself to question and challenge your thoughts.Raw Studios furniture design inspiration desk

2. Think outside the box, or daringly embrace the box and its restrictions.

So your design language is unique to your brand only, and clients or customers know you for that specific style. That’s great, keep your niche but try to surprise your market with unexpected material, form or function. Find areas to explore that will still embrace your iconic style.

RAW is known for modular systems that address quality, function and user health. Proving its viability and efficiency in the industry, our solutions have been specked by local firms on large scale projects. So why stop there? That’s why we’re introducing two new ranges exploring new functionality and minimal fixing techniques that will inform previously unexplored applications.

Raw Studios Raw_Life Mood Container Raw_Life definition: A minimal, stripped down, unprocessed and undisguised yet passionate, and powerful way of life… Informed by modular design systems that further growth, assists in functional activity and offsets the negative effects of continual change.

3. Good not perfect.

Allow yourself to stop designing. Distance gives healthy breaks. Designers always want to send out a perfect end product. This can result in over designing something that was good or maybe even better in earlier attempts.

One often receives constructive feedback and can design even better after letting the first prototype go through preliminary client or customer interaction. With our latest venture, we will be doing just that, giving the public a chance to live RAW.

4. Live on the user’s side for a while.

Get to know the design’s life after it left the controlled production environment. Understand your solution from all angles. This will help inform your design process in future projects and give you a whole new perspective. Many of the products RAW offers, are used in our own office. By doing that we can easily consider the practicalities and how user-friendly a product is.

5. Travel.

We’re not saying buy the most expensive plane ticket to the furthest place from home. We’re saying find inspiration in local territory, find destinations where you can experience, learn or see new aspects of your homeland. Find it in nature, city movements, stories, patterns or cultural festivities. Some of the smallest experiences and sights can give the biggest light bulb moments.Raw Studios design inspiration SA Travel map

Confessions of our latest RAW member.

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Raw Studios new member BianceThis Visi magazine featured designer reveals her 4 funniest experiences being new to furniture design and RAW.

1. Avoid stereotypes.

On my first visit, I expected a grimy old chaotic workshop full of mounds of saw dust , furniture parts scattered everywhere and sad fluorescent lights flickering overhead. To my surprise Raw Studios was the complete opposite. I kept hearing booming music, (must be from a nearby party, I thought. Nope.) It was from the workshop, an organised, clean and inviting one at that. The employees play music of their choice while they get on with their work seamlessly.Raw Studios workshop music employees

2. Leave summer styles behind.

First few weeks of work is stressful for any newcomer on a job, every decision is made with some mental debate first (making every decision take 3 times longer). Little did I know it would start at my feet. One morning I was calmly told to sit down (my head was racing at the time, what line did I overstep??) and told… my shoe choice wasn’t appropriate. My little sandals weren’t a match for the fast-moving workshop conditions and the existence of toes aren’t to be taken for granted. Hard tip shoes it will be from now on.Raw Studios workshop hard tip shoes sandals

3. Tools are friends not foes.

Working with machines, tools and saws, has never fallen into one of my comfort zones, yet my interest is piqued more now than ever before. So, when a nail gun is held out to me to do the next row, my first assumption is I should just hold the gun until its asked for again. Well that thought was a mistake, especially when I was expected to finish the rest of the task. P.S. Note to self: don’t get a fright every time a nail is shot into the workpiece.Raw Studios workshop power tools

4. A new language needs to be learned.

When new products are designed, or made, things move fast. A sentence barely needs to be finished before the other one understands what needs to be done.

Peet “So we move the part here..”
Thys: “Yes, okay.”
Peet: “Actually, do you know what will be even better? …”
Thys: “Yes, I’ll change that now”

All the while I’m thinking: Wait.. What? What’s being changed? Where did the last paragraph of this conversation go? Some telepathic communication is underway here.

10 solid reasons why we can make a real difference to your next project.

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Raw Studios Worklife Office
Great workspace does not just happen.

Ready to start transforming your (clients) workspace: this is how we can help.
Raw Studios Spyne System Worklife Designer office furniture

Here are 10 solid reasons why we can make a real difference to your next project.

1. We’re more affordable than you think.

Seriously, we hear this from people all the time; “we though this quality and real design was going to come at a way higher price point” or “when we compared your offering with like products we were pleasantly surprised at the value”.

We argue that that is what real modular systems design is supposed to do: make great stuff more affordable, have a wider impact and ultimately help people out.

2. We actually care about your health and wellbeing.

Are you sick of smelling the melamine gasses coming off your office furniture? Well you have another choice, you know?

The engineered materials (solid birch plywood) that we employ in our ranges are natural and conform to the highest Northern European standards for health and sustainability. If you would like to know more about how green we really are, please download this short fact sheet.

3. We don’t just talk the talk, we innovate, we don’t just combine, we design.

So many workplace design companies talk the talk of collaboration, productivity, team activation, employee happiness and engagement, just to turn around and offer the same old rows and rows of table with pedestal combos and maybe some upholstered pod like structures… wow!

We actually take the time to consider where workspace and worklife is heading and to design solutions to the challenges posed by the changing landscape of work.

We consider how “super teams” now operate and what they need and how furniture should not get in the way of great collaboration and creativity, how often mobile workers have become, and how their needs have changed, but also that there is still a large group of employees that simply spend half their lives at the office and deserve to feel comfortable and assisted.

Raw Studios office range solution

4. We actually give a damn about the environment.

Raw is as green as we can make it, not perfect, but always improving. If you would like to know more about how green we really are, please download this short fact sheet.

5. We touch your site lightly.

Our systems are modular, flexible, and for the most part free standing. We don’t make dust or any other mess when we install and actually prefer to install just before the client takes occupation. No mess, no fuss.

6. Our lead times are way shorter that most imports or bespoke solutions.

Our standard lead-time is 3-5 weeks and we haven’t been late, ever! Many imported or bespoke solution can take three times as long to realize.

Raw Studios Blimp Worklife designer office furniture
7. We are agile, flexible and resourceful.

We are makers that are driven by a passion to make better experiences. We have our own prototyping facility where we can fast-track development on specific requests, and on larger projects we can design special apps and solutions. Please see our Customerization blog here.

8. We’re in it for the long solution, (modularity and longevity). Our products last longer.

We don’t buy into the throw away culture of “produce cheap and chuck away after three-five years”. We design and produce modular systems that can be re-configured and serviced from quality solid birch Finnish plywood.

9. We are authentic, with our own design language; we are a great alternative to the generic (yawn) products out there and as a challenger company, we try harder.

Yes, we are now often up against the big boys in the industry and because we offer something different to the generic office (you know it… Steel frame and melamine top… realy long yaaawn! ) We have caught the attentions of producers and corporates alike. Clients are not satisfied with the “usual” look, feel and function any longer.

10. We’re 100% local.

Local content is trending and for good reason… it’s damn lekker and sustainable. More often than not projects call for high local content and you don’t get more local than RAW. To see us at work on our beautiful hill, please see this short video: