Case Studies


Transforming mode’s Office Space

About mode


mode specialises in creating transport strategies for various sectors. From our very first meeting, it was clear that mode is not your typical transport planning company – they have a distinct personality that needed to be reflected in their new office space.


mode operates from three different office locations: Manchester, London, and Birmingham. Birmingham holds special significance as the birthplace of the business, and the opportunity to purchase their office space presented itself as a chance to create a true “home” for mode. This is where Copper & Ash came in, to transform their existing office space into a multi-function space that they could really call home.


The Brief


The journey began with a site visit to mode’s new office space with Director David Frisby. The existing layout was uninspiring, divided into small, non-functional spaces that didn’t align with Mode’s vision. David expressed his desire to cultivate an environment that not only encouraged the team to come into the office but also made them proud of it.


The new layout was to incorporate these key elements with an infusion of the unique ‘mode personality’ throughout.


  • A flexible, open-plan main workspace.
  • Social spaces for team integration, including a communal kitchen and a breakout area.
  • Semi-private areas for specialised teams, like accounts, to still emphasise team cohesion while giving space for the nature of their work.
  • A spacious boardroom for team gatherings.
  • A separate office for David.
  • Restroom facilities.




Stage 1: Define

The initial phase involved formulating a clear and concise brief that outlined the primary objectives for the office layout. Multiple layout options were explored, introducing fresh ideas to David and his team, including relocating the kitchen.


In tandem with feasibility planning, a lookbook was created, delving into the office’s overall ambience. The design aimed to showcase the industrial heritage of the mode brand while injecting the fun and vibrant spirit of the mode team. Material selection and construction detailing played a crucial role, and a bold orange hue from the company’s branding was woven into the design.


The mode team were thrilled with the layout and direction presented, enabling a smooth transition to the next stage.

Stage 2: Design

With an agreed-upon layout and design direction in place, the design concept was brought to life in 3D. The concept celebrated the raw beauty of materials while maintaining a refined feel, utilising a palette of birch ply, concrete, black metalwork, and subtle white tones. Crafted joinery, top-tier hardware, and lighting contributed to the blend of textures and aesthetics.


Key Design Features:



  • A striking orange entrance that leads seamlessly to the central walkway featuring an eye-catching orange mesh ceiling raft leading to the branded boardroom.
  • An open-plan kitchen strategically located to make the best use of the natural light. With a stunning elevation of Crittle glazing, it included a birch ply kitchen, concrete island and feature ceiling raft using the kitchen surround to add a pop of signature orange.
  • Breakout area, defined by contrasting wall finishes, acoustic ceiling rafts to soften the space, and freestanding furniture to help give definition and separate the space, including an arcade machine (as requested by the client) to add personality.
  • Open-plan office incorporating desk blocks distinguished by feature liner lighting and freestanding, moveable furniture to offer flexibility for the space to adapt as the company grows – with defined private spaces and dedicated project areas.
  • A striking office for David with bold orange shroud and bespoke built-in storage, to give a relaxed meeting space characterised by vivid colour and pendant lighting.
  • Boardroom showcasing the brand’s logo, utilising industrial metal cladding with refined application, adding built-in joinery, feature lighting and Industrial elements extended to the entrance, column radiators, glazed doors, and partitions resembling original crittle glazing. The boardroom is a key space within the concept -with industrial nods included throughout the space.
  • WCs that continue the industrial theme with fixtures and fittings, orange grout details, and bold Terrazzo flooring.

Stage 3: Develop

The team at mode loved the concept, enabling us to progress to the detailing stage. A comprehensive technical drawing pack was created, detailing finish specifications, feature finishes, and bespoke joinery. This allowed us to obtain quotes for mode that could be accurately compared, allowing the client to get fair and competitive costings for the fit-out. From here, we were able to recommend our fit-out partners, who were appointed once the tender process was completed.  This involvement in the costing stage meant we were able to guide the client. reducing the stress involved and allowing them to achieve maximum value.

Stage 4: Deliver


At Copper & Ash we like to support our clients from start to finish, which means offering full support throughout the fit-out stage too. We worked with the contractor throughout, providing design guidance and working through any issues that came to light on site. One example of this was the discovery of concealed pipework which meant we had to re-work the layout to suit. Our approach and desire to see a project through to completion meant we were able to react to such issues and limit any stress for the client.


We also assisted in sourcing furniture, fixtures, fittings, as well as elements like plants and artwork. This comprehensive approach ensured that every aspect of the design scheme was meticulously considered, leaving nothing to chance.




The final result at mode surpassed the client’s expectations, with David noting the remarkable alignment of the end product with the initial design concept. mode now boasts a fantastic new home, offering flexibility, room for growth, and a space that authentically represents the company’s values and personality. Copper & Ash wishes mode continued success in the years to come and looks forward to seeing them grow from strength to strength.

We had a fantastic experience working with Copper and Ash on our new office location in Birmingham. Their project management skills were exceptional, and they showed great professionalism throughout the process. What impressed us the most was their dedication to understanding our brand, not just from an aesthetic standpoint but also in terms of our cultural values. They truly went the extra mile to create a space that reflected our brand identity and created a positive and inspiring work environment.
David Frisby
Managing Director

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