Form and function: two sides of the same coin

In the history of design, there have been those who lead with form (making the design beautiful first and figuring out the practicalities later), and those who lead with function (ensuring operational accuracy before moving on to aesthetics). When it comes to commercial environments, it’s clear that form and function are both hugely important when it comes to ensuring the smooth running of your business, and presenting it in a positive light. Here’s the good news: with truly ingenious design, you needn’t focus on either form or function, they’re two sides of the same coin

green USM Haller quality office furniture with magazine display

That’s because there’s an elegance to genuinely ingenious design. This is true at both the level of individual products and the interior design of your office as a whole. The best way to achieve that kind of elegance is with beautifully designed, well ordered and maintained environment that manifests your key business philosophies and brand identity. Quality furniture and decor that makes use of colours and features associated with your brand is a good start; furniture and other environmental features that perfectly perform their function is the next step. Fully bespoke furniture built using the USM Haller collection and our other ranges of furniture for businesses help you to achieve that vision.

Green USM Haller office storage with internal USM Inos file trays

Masterclass: Kiwi coffee masters in London

New Zealand-based coffee roasters and espresso specialists Allpress have a simple overriding philosophy: “designed simply to be trusted completely”. It’s a philosophy that describes USM furniture pretty neatly. USM furnishings were the perfect choice for the new Allpress Roastery and Café in Shoreditch, London.


That philosophy permeates everything Allpress does. As Tony Papas says, “we have a very simple offering. We roast delicious coffee and give our customers exceptional technical support and training." In the company’s physical environments, this translates into a design approach that puts trust and function front-and-centre. This means a roastery that’s fully visible to the public via a glass wall that runs the length of the building and a second-floor café that is nestled among a training room, cupping lab and open-plan office. This level of openness and visibility is essential to building the kind of trust that the company aims for.

quality open plan office furniture in USM green

In turn, this open atmosphere calls for a tidy and ordered space in which everything can has a proper home and can be easily put in the right place. This requirement is equal parts practical and stylistic - it’s about presenting a space that is not only well-ordered but that also evokes a feeling of reliability and trustworthiness. As Papas says, “It is important that our spaces are functional and aesthetically beautiful in equal measure.” It’s here that the USM pieces come in: used throughout the building’s second floor, Allpress selected a series of USM Haller units perfectly customised to a whole range of storage and display purposes.

modern office design with green USM Haller furniture

In the office, end-of-desk storage provides workers at each bank of desks with exactly the storage they need. A larger unit divides sections of the office at waist-height, controlling the flow of movement in the space without impeding the open atmosphere. The pieces contain both closed storage and open display elements for magazines and periodicals. Additional storage is completely customised to the space available in private offices and meeting rooms. Every piece is finished in bold USM green, simply evoking the company’s branding and the green coffee beans that form the core of their trade, as well as bringing a stylistic unity to the premises.

green USM Haller storage for a coffee roasting company

Continuing this style is the company's Kitos M Meeting conference table. Making the most of the table's height-adjustability, they leave the table raised to its full height when not in use, allowing them to store the high stools underneath it, minimising the space it takes up. Height adjustment also benefits meeting efficiency: they're able to leave the table raised for a quick standing chat, as well as lower it for more official occasions.

height-adjustable USM Kitos M Meeting conference table in grey

In other words, the environment - just like Allpress’s coffee and USM’s furniture - is designed simply to be trusted completely.

green USM Haller private office storage sideboard

Get in touch to design bespoke furniture that’s perfectly tailored to your office, shop or showroom with the help of our experts in furniture design. You can also design your own pieces from scratch with our online configurator.