Tuesday, May 25, 2010

More Space at Twitter HQ

I've had the privilege to continue working on Twitter's office space as the company grows and expands into additional space. Here are some details on the space:

Project goals were to retain aesthetic consistency with the existing office while providing more program such as an increased number of conference and meeting rooms. Luckily Twitter cares about creating a healthy and beautiful environment for employees which allowed encouraged the use of zero VOC paint, choosing low VOC furnishings, and capitalizing on bringing natural light into the space via design.

The space had a preexisting dropped ceiling which we opted to keep intact, along with a number of existing small conference rooms. We inserted community lounge areas within the work area to break up the space. Where we added walls, renewable bio based materials were used for insulation and low voltage lighting was added.

With interior details, I tried to make small details count by making them meaningful, fun, playful, full of color, yet useful and sustainable. With new materials, I opted to keep them in the rawest, most natural state possible, using only water based sealers. With artwork, we involved Twitter employees and local artists, 3 Fish Studios.

Twitter is growing so rapidly that they run the risk of purchasing furniture that won't transfer to our future needs. For this reason, I choose to stay with a handful of chair styles and colors to create a continuity of simplicity throughout the space. Bringing the outdoors was also an overarching theme in my approach. MATERIALS:

1. All paint is NO VOC; Enviro Coat by Kelly Moore.

2. Insulation used in walls is EcoBatt;"Based on rapidly renewable bio-based materials rather than non-renewable petroleum-based chemicals commonly used in other insulation products, ECOSE Technology reduces binder embodied energy by up to 70%, and does not contain phenol, formaldehyde, acrylics or artificial colors used to make traditional fiberglass insulation."

3. Shaw Carpet ingredients are as follows: face fiber: nylon 6, dye method: 100% solution dyed, backing: polyolefin composite, surface treatments: non c8 fluorocarbon chemistry, does not contain PVC, phthalates, or PBD/PBDE.

4. Hanging over the reception desk are manzanita tree branches courtesy of Lundberg Design.

5. Twitter Sign is made of hot rolled steel mounted on reclaimed barn wood which duplicates signs on the other floor. Made by Lundberg Design.


1. Concrete Table surfaces by Concreteworks are comprised of 40% fly ash and 100% recycled aggregates. Bases are maple plywood with parallam cross beams; finished with a water based sealer.

2. Conference Room Chairs: Caper Chair by Herman Miller have returnable/reusable packaging, durability, pre-consumer and post-consumer recycled content, and GREENGUARD certification. Caper is comprised of 21-percent recycled materials. This figure breaks down to 15-percent post-consumer and 6-percent pre-consumer recycled content.

3. Steelcase Workstations are composed of the following materials Recycled content 44%, Post consumer 18%, Pre consumer 26%, Recycled content 73%, PVC-free work surface edge banding

4. Desk chairs are the Think Chair by Steelcase; the chair is comprised of 98% recyclable content and is made of up to 37% recycled material. It is also Greenguard certified and helps contribute towards LEED certification.

5. Reception Desk is made of plywood and sealed using a water based seal by Lundberg Design.

6. Cafe tables are made from Elm sealed with water based sealer. Yes, I got the idea from Four Barrel Coffee's tables.

7. Reception Desk is plywood with a walnut veneer sealed with water based sealer. Made by Lundberg Design.


1. Feather decals were custom based on photos of a feather found on my honeymoon.

2. Bird silhouettes on conference room doors are routed acrylic painted black.

3. Neon art piece in cafe area was graciously lent to twitter by Mary Conrad (@M_Ry)

4. Framed pictures in the Chill Room are from Twitter employees @troy, @ded & @jillyface

5. "Twitter Republic" and "140 Mile" Paintings were custom from San Francisco based 3 Fish Studios

6. Twitter bird prints by Adam Koford - @apelad

7. Ts in the cafe area are listed below (not in order shown). Huge shout out to the Foundaries that gave me a free licenses; Bryan Mason @typekit for making it happen: Abigail (Fonthead - @Fonthead) Big-Smalls Bold (Chank Co - @chankfonts) Blackout Std Chunder (Chank Co - @chankfonts) CornDog (Fonthead - @Fonthead) http://www.fonthead.com/ Embroy Open (HVD Fonts - @hvdfonts) Eurostile Garamond Gill Sans Gotham Helvetica Bold Jeanne Moderno OT Geometrique (Steve Mehallo - @mehallo) Mrs. Eaves Sniglet (The League of Moveable Type - @theleagueof), Stud (Typodermic - @typodermic)

8. Blue fawn is a flea market find, refurbished and painted by me, @sara .


Blogger Leighton said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

11:41 AM  
Blogger Leighton said...

Love to see the Steelcase product in there! :) I work on a different brand at Steelcase but thanks for the shout out!

I also really liked the physical twitter handle idea, that is awesome.

11:43 AM  
Blogger mehallo said...

Hi Sara,

It was great to find your post and see the final results. You're on my blog today: http://mehallo.com/blog/archives/17145

and posted recently, my other twitter find ...



10:23 AM  
Blogger eric said...

Such an amazing list of design tools with sustainability in mind. If Twitter is ever in need of recycled ceramic or glass tile please let me know. We're a local manufacturer that uses bay area recycled materials to make our products. Used by Whole Foods and Google, we might be a good fit for some of your future projects. www.fireclaytile.com or @fireclay

Again, great work!

4:56 PM  
Blogger yong0811 said...

hi sara,
im sy~love ur design a lot~im currently doing a research on office design~can u pls do me a favor?I couldnt find the floor plan of twitter office~and my research is nt complete without a floor plan~can u pls post some pictures of the floor plan?really appreciate ur help~thanks a million~

12:33 AM  
Blogger Adam S said...

The Steelcase Think Chair is a truly great chair for nearly any office setting. For anyone who may be interested in the Steelcase Think Chair, click on the preceding link for a thorough review.

12:25 PM  
Blogger Josh Schwartz said...

Hi, could you provide us the images so we could see the twitter HQ. I am excited how they redesign it. I'm sure they hired a furniture removalists to help them removing furniture or office stuffs.

11:22 AM  

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