As Good As New: 10 Years In, Xorel Continues to Impress

As Good As New: 10 Years In, Xorel Continues to Impress

Design: Cynthia Lindberg, Director of Interior Design + Gensler

Location: Ogilvy, NYC

Market: Workplace

Product & End Use: Xorel Meteor | Wrapped Acoustic and Tackable Panels

Photography: Filip Wolak

“I wanted to find a textile that paralleled what we were trying to achieve in the entire space. We needed something new, innovative, sustainable, forward thinking and this is where Xorel fit in.”

- Cynthia Lindberg, Senior Partner and Executive Director of Design & Construction at Ogilvy.


Design Challenge

When moving into their new Manhattan location, international advertising, marketing, and public relations agency Ogilvy wanted a design that would stand the test of time—and some good wear and tear! As a creative company, it was important to have adaptable and durable surfaces that could be used daily with little maintenance. Originally designed in 2008, it was also around the time when open offices were gaining traction across different industries, and Ogilvy wanted to provide employees with a collaborative environment that allowed plenty of light to permeate work and common spaces.

Design Solution

To ensure that textile surfaces would be long lasting, the design team specified Carnegie’s Xorel Meteor, which offered a wide array of bright and neutral colors and the durability needed for a high-traffic space. Xorel Meteor was applied to wrapped panels in conference rooms and phone rooms as well as walls across the office. As a UV-stable yarn, Xorel is resistant to fading or discoloration, which made it ideal for an open office space that allowed plentiful natural light to permeate the larger floorplate.


When Ogilvy began designing their offices in a former chocolate factory in the Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood of Manhattan in 2008, it was clear that the project would be a major renovation. The project also provided a fresh look at what the office of the future was and what that meant for the employee experience at all levels.

In order to create an open and collaborative floorplate, the design team eliminated private offices, moving all conferencing spaces toward the center/interior of the building so that all employees had workspace along the windows around the perimeter and had access to natural daylight. The selection of textiles utilized across the space was also a key part of this future-forward concept for Cynthia Lindberg, Senior Partner and Executive Director of Design & Construction at Ogilvy. “I wanted to find a textile that fit within the story we were trying to craft within the space: new, innovative, sustainable, forward-thinking. This is where Xorel fit in perfectly.”

“The Xorel held up! You can wash it, pin it, it never fades.”

Xorel Meteor, a versatile plain weave and beloved Carnegie classic, was specified for all acoustic and tackable surfaces in the space. Conference rooms that hosted client meetings and working sessions required a more muted ambiance, and consequently went with a black (770) and white (705) palette that could provide a clean slate for creative presentations.

Over the course of the following 10 years,  pictures and in-progress creative works were routinely pinned onto these surfaces. According to  Lindberg, these Xorel surfaces still look new to this day. “The Xorel held up! You can wash it, pin it, it never fades.”

Acoustic panels in the phone rooms got an added dose of vibrancy with Xorel Meteor color 727, which coincidentally matched the Ogilvy brand red.

"There was constant use as a tackable surface over 10 years and it still looks brand new. I’m a huge fan of Xorel."

One of the key goals for the space when it was initially designed was that everyone—regardless of title—would have access to natural light. This meant private offices were eliminated and workstations were situated along the perimeter of the building for window access. Special considerations had to be made when choosing fabrics and finishes that didn’t fade over time as a result of UV exposure. A unique benefit of Xorel is that the solution-dyed and UV stable yarn makes it resistant to such fading or discoloration; making it ideal for sun-soaked spaces.  “We get tons of daylight all day long, and after ten years it still looks unfaded and perfect.”

Xorel is free of PVC and other red-list chemicals of concern, and has many third party certifications including Cradle to Cradle Gold (biobased patterns) that all contribute to what our industry understands as a sustainable product. However, what sets Xorel apart from other sustainable textiles on the market is its added longevity and durability—which ensures a long-term environmental impact.

As Ogilvy prepares to build out their next NYC office, Lindberg has been giving tours to prospective tenants, and has been receiving comments about how the space looks like it was designed yesterday—not over 10 years ago. “There was constant use as a tackable surface over 10 years and it still looks brand new. I’m a huge fan of Xorel,” she says.

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