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We teamed up with Gray Magazine this year to create their feature bars for the Dinner by Design 2016 event. If you are not familiar with Dinner by Design, it’s an annual event in Vancouver where designers and other creative professionals create a one-of-a-kind dining experience. We were thrilled to work with Gray Magazine on the project because we are huge fans of their publication!

Our role in the event was taking two existing bars at the venue and updating them with a new look that incorporated Gray Magazine’s logo. This may sound like a straight forward job for us but there were a variety of challenges along the way. For starters the two bars were enormous and badly needed some TLC. On top of the bars’ existing state they were also tucked away into the darkest corners of the venue. If that was not bad enough we had to design, coordinate and construct the update within a month and with a budget of zero dollars. Zero!


Given the challenges and restraints we wanted to create a high impact design with minimal materials and complexity.  The team and I went back to design basics – colour, shapes and light – to come up with a youthful and bright design. We used raw plywood sheets to make the basic structure of the bars’ new appearance. The dark spaces the bar were in became a feature by allowing light to shine though simple CNC cut outs and Gray Magazine’s logo. Building on blocks of pink, yellow and white, we folded geometric shapes from the bar fronts onto the floor and ceiling.


Luckily we were able to team up with one of our contractors, Raff Merola of Merola Construction, to build and install the bars’. We were also fortunate enough to have Maker Labs (who swooped in and saved us at the last minute) to do all the CNC cutting on the plywood and Benjamin Moore donated all the paint.

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The end result was a playful focal point for guests (and us) to enjoy cocktails at. Gray Magazine was thrilled with the design and I have to say I was pretty happy with what my team created as well!

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Suppliers & Collaborators:

Merola Construction
Maker Labs
Benjamin Moore on West Broadway
Gray Magazine


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