Office Renovation Project with Jaw-Dropping Results (Before & After)

We’ll get to the details and photos from our latest office renovation project.

(If you just can’t wait to see the results, watch this video slideshow of the results!

But first, let’s clue you in on a little “secret.” Well, maybe it’s not a secret. But you may not have known it already. Are you sitting down? Here it is…

Vital Spaces can provide project management for commercial and residential projects.


Okay, maybe it is kind of a secret. We post most often about several topics we really feel have life-changing potential: reducing exposure toxins, managing electromagnetic interference, gaining optimal health, and more. But did you know our Founder + Principal Angela Self is a licensed builder? Yep. There’s a fairly extensive body of knowledge and experience that underpins our work as a building biology company. It just so happens that this unique skill set makes Vital Spaces an ideal partner to provide intelligent, health-optimized project management for commercial and residential remodeling projects. Our latest office renovation project was a joy, and we are excited to share the results with you.

Here’s Our Latest Commercial Renovation Project

“Extreme Makeover-worthy” is how eTextile Communications labels our most recent and exciting office renovation project for a textile company, Greenwood Mills, Inc. Here’s their full post:

BACK TO THE FUTURE:Greenwood Mills returns ‘home’ to collaborative, healthier HQFor a number of Greenwood Mills…

Posted by ETC – on Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Why did we love this office renovation project so much?

Many aspects were great but we will pare it down to the top five.

1) The Transformation

And it was … quite a transformation. Transformations always seem magical, and this one was all that and more. As they say, pictures are worth a thousand words.

Here are some photos from BEFORE the office renovation project:
And here are a few photos from AFTER the office renovation project:

2) The Beauty

Wow, is this space ever gorgeous! It’s an open floor plan with lots of glass, beautiful refinished concrete floors, specialty lighting, a “Glam” kitchen, modern but comfortable furniture, and artwork/accessories to make you feel “At Home At Work.”

Gray was our base shade on walls complemented with luxurious shades of blue and green. We used high-impact tile in the kitchen and restrooms and brought in primarily new modern desking but accented with some historical pieces from this textile company’s rich history.

And check out the door hardware! The loom shuttle replicas to tie together what this company is all about.

Reclaimed wood and stone greet you as you enter this space: a space to represent the future of a longstanding business committed to not only recruiting new talent but also ensuring workplace satisfaction to retain valued employees.

3) The Functionality

As this office was designed with Millennials in mind, collaboration spaces were key. This generation prefers open areas to meet versus sitting in an office, so we created the space to host impromptu and scheduled meetings.

And take a peek in modern offices these days: you will see modern, even funky, furniture where one can get comfortable working, almost like home. We incorporated sofas and other upholstered chairs to bolster this trend.

Technology… that’s a given right? Absolutely. I’m convinced the board rooms in this office could communicate with other planets. Okay, I’m kidding, but they are super cool. Of course they are designed with all the typical presentation functionality, but we love the feature which can set music, lights, and window shades at the touch of a button. Heck, you never know when you might need to switch from presentation mode to project celebration mode in an instant! Now that’s a multi-tasking office of the future!

4) The Green + Health Components

Because our Founder + Principal Angela Self is a certified Building Biologist, incorporating healthy features really excites us, but more importantly: incorporating health is a top workplace trend. Here are few of the ways we made this office renovation project healthier and greener:

  • Ceiling. The ceiling tiles are the Calla series by Armstrong, which are 76% recycled, provide better air quality through reduced volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions and Living Building Challenge compliant.
  • Hydration. Our water bottle filling stations are not what you see in most buildings because those are only filtering one toxin (generally lead) and there are thousands of toxins in tap water. The ones in this office will give you some of the cleanest, healthiest water possible.
  • Paint. We used Ecos Zero VOC Paint. While many paints advertise zero VOC, they can still contain harmful chemicals because they are not required to be identified on the label. This company excludes these harmful chemicals, and although our painter had never used these paints, he let me know he loved using these products.
  • Combination Nursing/Peloton Room. A Peloton is an indoor bike with a screen that offers all sorts of on demand workout programs.
  • Carpet. You’ll notice we did not do much carpet. Carpet decreases air quality — even new carpet materials are high in VOCs and toxins. Carpet has the ability to hold in all sorts of toxins, especially anything on the bottom of your shoes. Studies (and common sense…) show there are thousands, even hundreds of thousands of chemicals, toxins, germs, etc. routinely found on the bottoms of shoes.
  • Lighting. Studies show offering as much natural light as possible improves employee satisfaction and performance. We used a new technology called tunable lighting. That means we can change the color temperature and brightness of the LED fixtures to mimic times of day and natural light.

5) The Fun!

You’ve heard the quote: “Love what you do and never work a day in your life.” It’s our absolute belief that work should be fun. And that’s just what we did.

[x_image type=”rounded” float=”none” src=”” alt=”GMI Office Renovation Project Team” title=”GMI Office Renovation Project Team” info=”tooltip” info_place=”top” info_trigger=”hover”]


Chlorine Alternatives: Sanitize Without Toxic Chemicals

Looking for Chlorine Alternatives to Disinfect Your Pool? Read On! We dealt with water filtration and purity in our last post. This time, we’re going to tackle chlorine alternatives. Water is vital for life, and it’s important that it be as pure as possible. Hopefully uou have some sort of filtration system in place. If […]

Clear and Clean: An Overview of Residential and Commercial Water Filtration

Water Filtration is Necessary for Clean Water

“It is estimated that there are over 85,000 possible contaminants in the water supply. Of these thousands of contaminants, water municipalities test for only roughly 120.”

~ Article in Healing Our World, a publication by the Hippocrates Health Institute

An Overview of Residential and Commercial Water Filtration OptionsWe’re talking about clean water. H2O. Pure aqua. It’s a necessity for life. And there are tens of thousands of possible contaminants potentially present in the water that reaches your home. Municipalities who supply water test for only 120 of those substances. That’s less than two tenths of one percent. Let that sink in. Water may be “tested” to be safe by your water treatment facility for those 120 items, but what about the other 84,880 contaminants?

If you are concerned about your health (and you should be!), filtering your tap water is an easy and cost effective way to decrease illness and increase wellness.

We often have clients ask why certain water filtration methods are not recommended. Many of you have heard about filtration methods or your health care practitioner has recommended a particular method. This article will be a good start toward helping you understand the different methods of water filtration and why we recommend ours over other popular methods. The methods we will discuss today include reverse osmosis, distillation, and our custom filtration.

About Reverse Osmosis

Reverse osmosis is the process of using high pressure to force water through a semi-permeable membrane. It is very effective in removing dissolved salts, minerals, bacteria, and pyrogens. Its pores will block large molecular structures but more dangerous chemicals like pesticides, herbicides, and chlorine are molecularly smaller than water and may pass through. Additionally, because it strips the water of natural minerals that your body needs, it can actually leach minerals from your body (this is also the case with distillation, below). Finally, it wastes a large portion of water that runs through the system and is a very slow process facilitating the need for a holding tank especially if used for whole house filtration.

About Distillation

Distillation is like evaporation: water is heated to create steam and as the steam separates from the contaminants, it leaves the contaminants behind. This process removes contaminants that have a higher boiling point than water, which includes a majority of issues. It will reliably remove bacteria, viruses, heavy metals, and minerals. However, there are some chemicals that have a lower boiling point than water (such as chlorine) and it will not remove those. That being said, this is our second favorite water filtration method because it is very effective at removing harmful substances from your water. However, it will also remove the healthy minerals (as discussed above) and, this is an incredibly slow method. It can take several hours to provide one gallon of clean water. This renders distillation nearly impossible to use for whole house filtration.

Custom Filtration: A Better Option for Clean Water

Our point-of-entry whole house customized filtration targets all the water entering your home so that you don’t have to bathe or brush your teeth in contaminated water. We do not sell you an “off the shelf” system. First we ask you to fill out a questionnaire regarding your needs and any health issues. Second, we obtain the water report from your local water treatment facility to check what issues there are with your water. Generally, at point of entry, you will have a carbon tank to remove chlorine, chloramines and their by-products (called THMs and HAAs). This will reduce these contaminants by at least 98%. Industrial chemicals are reduced by 80 – 95%. We can add heavy metal removing media to remove fluoride, arsenic, lead, copper, chromium and most other heavy metals by 80 – 90%. This will clean the water very effectively for bathing, brushing your teeth, etc. Then, additional filtration is placed at your kitchen sink (ceramic and other upgrades depending on your specific needs) for drinking and cooking which will further reduces, chemicals, parasites, VOCs, metals, and bacteria. Best of all, our kitchen sink filtration removes an incredible 99% of fluoride from your drinking water! This approach provides you with some of the cleanest, healthiest water possible.

What About Water Filtration for Businesses?

Lets talk for a minute specifically about commercial filtration. We are happy to see in recent years many offices and businesses providing water bottle filling stations. This is fantastic because research shows that if we have access to drinking water, we will drink more water. However, did you know, these stations use the word “filtered” but in most cases they are only filtering out only one thing such as lead? We feel this is misleading, but in building biology we feel any attempt to be healthier is progress worth celebrating. At least these stations are helping us to drink more water.

Vital Spaces offers not only systems for your home; we also offer systems for offices and businesses including commercial water bottling stations that offer excellent filtration!

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