Text description provided by the architects. The Coven is a co-working space for women and those who identify as non-binary. The goal for the design of their flagship location in St. Paul, Minnesota was to transform a dark, historic space into a bright and warm space that encourages women’s empowerment and sets a strong foundation for the future. The goal of the design was to empower those that inhabit the space and create a sense of community and equity. The reception and open lounge take advantage of the high ceilings, natural light, and rich architectural character. The design team restored the historic details in the space and added unique custom features to match that level of detail.
The custom check in desk is made of a soft blue upholstery that creates a cozy moment at the front door. At the entry to The Coven a custom floor mosaic of The Coven logo is laid on the floor. This detail along with custom hardware and decorative lighting make the entry memorable. Unexpected use of color and material reflects the individuality of the members and guests. The open custom coffee bar serves as a social hub for both a collaborative work area and for special events. Furniture is soft, colorful, and flexible.
The Coven’s mantra is “do the most good.” We had those words made into a custom wall tile application in the coffee bar. That provides a bold and empowering imprint on the space. The goal of the design was to connect and inspire members with design and art moments that have become a magnet for the community. The textures and colors amplify the historic building details and provide a sense of place. The connecting stair is a bold move that symbolizes strength and community and connects the open gathering space of the first floor with the office suites of the lower level. The lower level was transformed into a bright and inviting space.
Ceilings are painted white throughout, and moments of surprise happen throughout. Private offices and conference rooms are thoughtful and comfortable. Opportunities for branding and personalization are abundant. Brick walls and hidden niches serve as solid and intentional backgrounds for these moments. The entire space is filled with art made just for this space. The Coven supports local female artists and the space is filled with murals, weavings, paintings, tapestries, tile, prints and objects curated and created for this space. They are important elements in the design and create a canvas that express community and diversity.