As creatives, we thrive when we’re given the opportunity to create something beautiful. Ordinarily, this 'something' is a website, branding, or marketing collateral, but this month, it was our office. A tangible, visual, and physical display of our minds.
May 31, 2020
Moving into our new Portland office was the ultimate fresh start. It was an opportunity to design a new space, an opportunity to gain a new perspective on our productivity, and an opportunity to experience the fruits of our own labor.
The process began with a blank slate. Our office was as bare as it gets – white walls with smudges and holes from the previous tenant, no kitchen area, and no decor. Naturally, we wanted to get the most exciting part of the process accomplished first: the painting. After spending a day designing the mural with the design team, spending hours at Home Depot matching colors, and mentally preparing for a long, arduous process, we called on a few friends for access to a 10' ladder and a bright projector. (Thank you Casey and Jamie!) The ladder was crucial to our success. Unfortunately, when we got the projector set up, we realized that the width of the office would not allow us to position it properly, so we divided the wall into a grid and freehanded as much as possible. Ah, life.
The tape looked pretty well positioned, so we decided to begin the painting fun. The process, from start to finish, took about 24 working hours over the course of 3 days for 4 people. Total time calculation: 96 hours. We managed to condense about 10 hours into a 1 minute video, which can be watched below.
Finally, it was time for mural clean-ups. Michelle and Isa, the steadier-handed of the bunch, went through every shape and did edges, while Payge focused on second and third coats on some of the lighter shapes. As much as we love our Wink yellow, it grew to be the bane of our existence on the wall. All in all, the mural turned out gorgeous. We were so proud to see it all come together and watch our hard work turn into a reality.
The Desks + Chairs
Signing a lease during the COVID-19 pandemic was risky enough, but then taking into account the workplace shutdowns, we had an incredibly tough time sourcing furniture. Ikea had a 6 week lead-time, many smaller distributors were too expensive, and most sites had furniture that was too low of quality for this beautiful space. After looking for hours on every site we could find and connecting with our favorite office supply stores, we found the holy grail of all desks on Amazon. These beautiful desks have a minimal frame, a light laminate wood top, and absolutely perfect for our new office. It was official! Wink Digital now had a place to work... but still no place to sit. So, we called our sweet friend, Morgan, at Strive Workplace Solutions and told her the truth of the situation: we want to have more money for chairs, but because of the pandemic, we just didn't know how much we could spend. The lower cost for the chairs, the better. She got back to me with a quote for the perfect chairs, so we snapped them up. In our perfect world, the chair legs would have been white, but you'd be surprised how hard that is to find at a reasonable price, and that actually feels comfortable. Finally, we got our office chairs set up, and we were ready to roll. (Seriously. We can now roll our chairs anywhere!)
The kitchen was our biggest request of our new landlords. Because our prior office had no counter space, nowhere to do dishes, and nowhere to store kitchen supplies, we begged our new landlords for the kitchen of our dreams... and they delivered! Since Payge loves kitchen design, she was able to envision the perfect setup for our Portland team. With a beautiful white quartz countertop, a black matte ceramic sink, and stainless steel appliances, we now have an area for everything, and champagne for all!
Among the most important items in our new office were the signs inside and outside. On the outside of our building, we put in a double-faced, internally illuminated, 20" tall x 40" wide sign. (Pictures coming soon!) On our inside wall with the mural, we needed a 40" by 40" sign to put in the center. We chose to go with our dark badge because of its strikingly professional presence, while also being a nice contrast against the mural. The internal sign is painted acrylic with 1/2" thick letters stacked on top. Both signs represent Wink to a T - big thanks to our partners at Garrett Signs and Sign Wizards for their hard work.
The furniture was the part of the process we had the most fun with, and the most challenge with. With the beautiful laminated timber beams inside our office being such a rich color, we knew we had to match them absolutely perfectly with the furniture. The first step of that process was the desks, the second step was the sofa. We were able to find SO many sofas we loved, but the wood made it a challenge. We needed a sofa that had light wood legs, a neutral color, a modern shape, a gender-neutral appearance, and under $1000. When you narrowed down those options, this was the only choice we looked at and said "YES!" So, we unpacked it from the enormous box that UPS delivered, and proceeded to play a game of "what is this diagram showing?!" When we got it assembled and in place, we didn't even realize that we had spilled a gallon of red paint all over our floor in the process. So, in true Wink spirit, we were very resourceful. ;)
Despite our paint mishap, we were able to get the office cleaned up and sparkling. We are so excited to have this amazing new space and we can't wait for you to come visit!
You can find our new office at:
4719 N Albina Ave. Portland, OR 97217
Written by Payge H. Kerman, President
July 22, 2020
Behold, the PWA
PWA stands for Progressive Web Application, a new approach to developing and sharing applications. At the risk of completely confusing our non-software engineer audience (hopefully most of our readers – that’s why you hired us, after all), we’re breaking PWA down. How it works, why it matters, and why the heck we can’t stop talking about it.