Case Study: Ulla Johnson Showroom, NYC

  • 2 min read

"Whatever furniture comes into the space, it doesn't just come in as an object, it gets modified to join the whole story of who Ulla is and what her aesthetic is about." —Poonam Khanna, architect and interior designer, The Union Works

Heartwork Sawhorse 4 Pod Desk with white cable management tray and Building Block Bravo mobile pedestal storage in white

In 2015, when NYC-based fashion designer Ulla Johnson moved into a bigger space that could accommodate her growing team, she called upon Poonam Khanna, founder of The Union Works, to outfit the new atelier. The multipurpose space called for mobile, customizable designs that could flex across model fittings, fabric selections, photo shoots, and desk work. Khanna, a celebrated designer of high-end retail environments for clients such as Loeffler Randall, immediately looked to Heartwork for a modern, high-quality system that could be scaled over time.

Detail Shot of Heartwork Sawhorse Table cable management tray in white

The Sawhorse Desk and Active Duty Bookcase aligned perfectly with Ms Johnson's aesthetic of "bohemian elegance" (as coined by the LA Times) providing a light, airy footprint while allowing for customization of colors and surfaces. Khanna chose ash wood veneer tops and white legs and cable management for the desks, and the white powder coat finish for the bookcases, which she further customized by adhering brass sheeting over the tops and sides for a hint of shine. Heartwork Bravo Pedestals in white fit neatly beneath each desk or could roam over the course of a day.

Active Duty 2 High Bookcase Bookshelf in white

Poonam Khanna, architect and interior designer, The Union Works

"The system lends itself to flexibility," Khanna commented about the Heartwork designs, noting that every time she's been in the Ulla Johnson atelier over the past year, the staff is always using the Heartwork furniture differently—to organize materials and samples, as magnetic mood boards, for team huddles, etc. "Ulla's company is growing quickly, so what we've put in place is the DNA of their cultural aesthetic, and now they can continue to scale with it. The Heartwork designs will allow them to keep growing, and we can continue to add Heartwork elements and make them specific to the space."

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