Laboratory Showcase: From Maze-Like to AMAZing

LMT Communications, Inc. · Labs & Profiles · Jun 2009

  • Reception Area: Stepping through the frosted glass doors into the laboratory, doctors, patients and visitors are greeted in Nellmar’s reception area, which features natural wood veneer flooring and a sleek, curved reception center that serves as the lab’s focal point. Employee credentials and many before-and-after photographs line the reception center walls, showcasing Nellmar’s talented staff and the lab’s more prominent cases.

  • Elizabeth Hwang-bo, ceramic technician; Charles Lindsay, model & die technician; Laura Blackmer, waxing technician; John Uhes, production manager/ceramist; Wendy Romans, administrative assistant; Kevin Murphy, metal technician/ceramist; and Sara Kazan, owner.

  • Wax/Porcelain Department: Prior to the redesign, Nellmar could have been mistaken for a maze. The old lab was separated into small, individual rooms and the fractured setup made communication and workflow difficult. Workstations are now divided only by glass walls or low granite counters, keeping technicians connected and cases flowing smoothly. “In this open layout, technicians can talk and share professional ideas, which keeps everyone working together as a team,” says Kazan.

  • Metal Finishing & Model Room: The laboratory was designed with esthetics and employee comfort in mind. “My feeling is when you’re creating an esthetic product that’s crafted by hand, being in an esthetic space lends itself to finer work,” says Kazan. To accomplish this, Kazan turned to a local carpenter to craft 43"-wide lab benches with granite countertops, giving each technician a large, comfortable space. The ceramic, waxing and opaquing departments are all in one large area, with the metal finishing and model departments in a separate room enclosed by large glass walls employees jokingly call “the aquarium.” Panoramic windows line the outer walls and almost every bench faces a window, allowing plenty of natural light. Nellmar also features a soaring open ceiling, creating a spacious industrial feel.

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