The Company Behind Some of Grand Rapids’ Hottest Venues Expands National Product Line for 2017
Studio Wise expands national product line
- The Grand Rapids studio known for unique wood surfaces incubates products for the national market
- 2017 line includes brand-new table-base collection
Grand Rapids, Michigan-based furniture manufacturer Studio Wise announces an expanded 2017 line that includes a new table-base collection, additional power options and an enhanced sales experience.
The design and fabrication studio – known for surface products that were inspired by its designs for some of West Michigan’s most iconic restaurants, breweries, clubs and offices – has expanded its offerings not only locally but also on a national level.
Founded in 2007, Studio Wise went national in 2014 with its FUSE solid butcher-block-style surfaces for tables, counters and bars. FUSE is available in a number of wood species as well as unique custom finishes, all created and applied at the Studio Wise facility on the southern edge of downtown Grand Rapids. In 2016, the company introduced POP, a powder-coated wood surface with 10 standard colors and infinite customization options. The company also introduced a hand-selected, plank-style veneer surface, recently renamed FLYCH, a play on the veneer term “flitch.” Like FUSE, FLYCH is offered in a variety of wood species and finishes.
In 2017 – its 10-year anniversary – Studio Wise brings to the national market an original table-base collection that complements its signature surfaces collections.
New 2017 table-base collection
After having sourced bases for a number of years to pair with its surface products, Studio Wise has designed and is introducing five new proprietary table bases for 2017.
“With our new base offerings, we’ve moved to offering complete tables with virtually endless surface, base and finish options,” Studio Wise Founder Troy Bosworth said.
The new Studio Wise table-base collection includes Apex, an industrial-modern design with a nod to the shape of the letter A. Geo is another new base option; it’s a refined geometric design. Blox is a progression of the other designs, with a square shape that lends itself well to desking applications. Strut offers a runway flair and feel. Rounding out the new bases for 2017 is Parson, a classic, four-corner-modern base.
Bosworth, along with Studio Wise partners Eric Lanning and John VanZee, and product designer Brant Raterink, designed and named the collection.
Studio Wise will continue to offer the sourced Staple and Elements pedestal-style bases.
The five new bases are offered in three heights – standard dining height, counter height and bar height – and also have benching options. All are available in a wide variety of unique finishes and colors.
Although brand-new on the national market, the Studio Wise bases have been “incubated” at Grand Rapids area venues for several years.
“We do a lot of custom work in West Michigan where we’re headquartered, and from this work, some of our designs emerge for production on a national level,” Bosworth said. “It’s a process that starts very organically and becomes very intentional.”
The company’s FUSE product line went national in the same way – stemming from the unique designs that Studio Wise created for such popular West Michigan venues as Brewery Vivant, Cedar Springs Brewing Co., multiple Downtown Market spaces, Maru Sushi & Grill, The Green Well and The Winchester, to name a few.
Studio Wise also creates designs and products for office spaces. The firm designed the lobby for 38 Commerce in Grand Rapids’ Arena District. Studio Wise was commissioned by Start Garden, an organization launched by ArtPrize founder Rick DeVos, to make and install FUSE surfaces as well as unique “office pods” for Start Garden’s new downtown Grand Rapids headquarters.
“We design our products around our customers’ needs and desires – products that have the potential to become innovative solutions for a larger market,” Bosworth said.
2017 power options
For 2017, Studio Wise has expanded the selection of power data units available for “embedding” in the surfaces that the company manufactures. Eight different solutions are now available in a variety of power/data configuration and finish options.
“The expectation for power and data connectivity has become ubiquitous in virtually every environment,” Sales Director Eric Lanning said. “We treat that functionality as an extension of our design element – as an opportunity to set our designs apart by making them user-friendly as well as attractive.”
Simplified sales experience
For 2017, Studio Wise has refined its sales process and experience to be as simple and elegant as its products.
“We now have a lot of options to offer customers, but the number of variations can become intimidating – so we’ve simplified the decision-making process,” Lanning said.
The experience involves three simple steps: customers select a surface, then a base, and then a finish. This simplified process will also make it easy for Studio Wise to introduce new products, finishes and variations to the market more efficiently.
As part of simplifying, the company has updated its website and the tools that its sales team uses. Studio Wise now has 32 sales representatives covering much of the United States.
For its first several years, Studio Wise was more “behind the scenes” and grew by word of mouth. But with the launch of its national product lines, the company has become very intentional about touting its blend of custom artisanal work, with the ability to produce products in larger scales and quantities for customers across North America. The company is full service, from ideation to design to production to even installation on some local projects.
On a national level, Studio Wise products have been installed in a broad cross-section of environments, including at the University of Wisconsin-Madison; at Big Sky Resort in Montana; at Hyatt Hotels at Los Angeles International Airport and in Cleveland; at the Billie Jean King Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows, New York; at the Ronald McDonald House in Detroit; and at San Diego International Airport.
The company’s most recent design project and product installation is at New Holland Brewing’s The Knickerbocker Brewpub & Distillery in Grand Rapids. The work included creating three-story-high “trees” forming a beer garden canopy, producing three bars – including a distinctive “canopy” bar, and tables and bases for indoor and outdoor spaces.
“The product selections for The Knickerbocker became a mix of standard and custom offerings from our product collections. By mixing style, design and finishes, we were able to build upon the architecture and interior design to further define the look and feel of the different interior and exterior spaces,” Designer Brant Raterink said. (Learn more about this unique project at http://www.studiowisedesign.com/design-blog-1/.)
2016 was the company’s best year to date, with revenues doubling over the previous year. Studio Wise is on track to do the same for 2017. The company now employs 16 people.
“We’ve strategically moved from being a company that only did local custom work to being a national product design and development company prepared for major growth,” Studio Wise Partner John VanZee said.
Watch the 2017 product launch video at https://products.studiowisedesign.com/launchvideo.
About Studio Wise
Studio Wise is a design, fabrication and production studio specializing in craft furniture for a variety of indoor and outdoor spaces, including hospitality, office, educational, institutional and residential environments. Based in Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA, Studio Wise blends utility and design to create intrigue, insight and interaction for the built environment. More at http://www.studiowisedesign.com/.