Acoustic design has long been considered an important part of architecture. For years, designers, architects and building owners have tried a variety of methods and materials to help control echoes and sound in both residential and commercial spaces.
The earliest efforts involved ugly, utilitarian dropped ceiling panels that were typically made of asbestos, cellulose and other materials designed to help dampen sound. These old tiles did nothing for the buildings’ interiors and were often considered an eyesore at best — and dangerous at worst.
Times have changed, and today’s acoustic material is made of polyethylene terephthalate better known as PET Felt. This unique material is strong, sturdy and better at controlling acoustics than older drop ceiling panels. It’s also much more attractive and better suited to today’s cutting edge interior designs.
What Is PET Felt?
PET Felt looks and feels like wool, but this innovative material is made of recycled water and soda bottles and can contain anywhere from 50% to 100% post-recycled content. It’s formed into sheets which can be transformed into panels, tiles, light fixtures and even furniture, all of which does a superior job of absorbing sound and helping to control the acoustics in a room or building.
PET Felt is highly durable and easy to clean and maintain. Because it doesn’t contain organic material, it won’t begin to degrade or crumble with time, and you can use it in a wide variety of settings without needing to worry about maintenance or care. It can be found in an incredible range of colors, as well as shapes and designs that can help it fit in well with nearly any setting.
At the end of its lifespan, it’s also fully recyclable, making it an excellent green choice for today’s eco-conscious companies.
Why Use PET Felt?
Every building and space is different both in terms of size, shape and height and in terms of interior design and branding. One room may have high ceilings that need better acoustic control, while another space may need acoustic performance only in certain areas to better facilitate study, work or conversation.
Every space also has its own design needs in terms of color, pattern and style, which means that acoustic paneling can’t be a one-size-fits-all product. It should be customizable so that it can meet the unique and individual needs of each space. That’s what makes PET Felt so attractive; it can be formed, shaped, folded and colorized to match the needs of every space it’s installed in.
Designing With PET Felt
This highly innovative and versatile material can be used in many ways. If you’re wondering how it could fit into your office or commercial decor, take a look at these stunning design ideas.
1. Suspended Panels
This conference room has a highly contemporary design with a slight industrial edge, which makes the SoundEdge suspended acoustic panels the perfect fit for the space. The panels are alternated with hanging lights, with the color and texture of the panels blending perfectly with the rest of the room’s design, and positioned right where the room has the biggest acoustic need.
2. Color Pops
This space needs more consistent acoustic control across the room. Rather than sticking with one color and shape, however, the panels are broken into two sizes with the smaller panels showing off a bright, bold yellow that picks up the color of the wall in the adjacent room. This helps brighten the design and the space, while providing equal amounts of sound control at the same time.
3. Moody Blues
This office space has similar needs, but with a more understated color palette. Clusters of deep blue suspended panels are mixed with a soft gray that matches the color of the flooring. Together, the colors help create a dynamic ceiling appearance for the room, while offering superior sound control at the same time.
4. Sleek and Subtle
This space features clean, crisp lines and sleek surfaces. The SoundEdge acoustic panels suspended from the ceiling align with that style in a subtle way, and they help ensure that anyone using the space will be able to carry on conversations easily, no matter how busy it gets.
5. Sculptural Ceiling
One of the benefits of using PET Felt is its ability to be bent, sculpted and pieced together in so many ways. This area utilizes the SoundStar ceiling panels from Arktura in a neutral gray that matches the furniture, creating unique three-dimensional stars that help capture and absorb sound while creating a stunning and sculptural ceiling display.
6. Suspended Stars
For open spaces and buildings with high ceilings, sound control is even more important. Dropping a traditional ceiling only takes away from the height and style of the building, but by suspending sculptural panels instead, you can help absorb sound while enhancing and complementing the height of the space, rather than undermining it.
7. Conversation Areas
Commercial and office spaces are often used for a variety of purposes at once, so they feature wide open spaces. This can make it difficult for people to sit and hold a quiet conversation when needed, particularly as more office spaces are getting away from closed-in spaces. By suspending acoustic panels just where you need them, you can create a quiet atmosphere right where you need it, without closing in the space.
8. Pastel Angles
If you want something a little more substantial than a thin panel, but don’t want a large three-dimensional sculpture on the ceiling, these SoundAngle panels are the perfect fit. They help absorb sound from multiple directions, while offering a unique and stylish addition to the ceiling.
9. Subtle Stripes
Industrial spaces have a lot of character and appeal. They also have a considerable need for acoustic control. These SoundAngle panels blend in perfectly with the industrial style ceiling, without detracting from its appearance. They offer perfect sound control for the people using the space, making it the ideal spot for studying, working or relaxing.
10. Industrial Complement
Industrial spaces that have things like prominent ductwork as part of the design have a unique visual appeal. These SoundAngle panels help add some acoustic control, without covering up the ducts or taking away from their appearance. Instead, they complement the style effortlessly, enhancing the industrial appearance of the room.
PET Felt can also be layered to create unique patterns and three-dimensional ceiling structures. This area features geometric and playful designs that cover the entire ceiling, offering superior acoustics and a design element to the room at the same time.
12. Dual Areas
One of the nice things about this style of ceiling panel is the ability to use it right where you need it. This building has two types of ceiling — one standard ceiling and one acoustic — offering the visual appeal and sound control it needs in one area, along with adding some contrast with a smooth ceiling in the adjacent room.
13. Folded Patterns
Get a contemporary look with PET Felt that’s been folded into repeating patterns and designs. These SoftFold acoustic ceiling panels help soften the look of this contemporary room, while complementing its strong lines and angles, and offering sound control at the same time.
14. Blue Waves
Create a subtle and brilliant backdrop for a room by adding some soft color to the ceiling. These SoftFold panels are a rich blue color that creates the look of an ocean wave across the ceiling, adding a playful element to the room’s design.
15. Open Weave
Busy spaces like this one need sound control to keep the area from getting overwhelmingly loud. With a low ceiling, however, the space would appear too closed-in. These SoftFold panels are the perfect solution; they offer a soft weave-like appearance that keeps the space from feeling too closed-in while adding much needed acoustic control at the same time.
Make the Switch to PET Felt
By switching to PET Felt for your acoustic designs, you open the doors to a wide range of possibilities in shape, color and style. You also get a durable, low maintenance material that’s fully recyclable and green in construction. Make the switch to PET Felt for your next project, and you will be amazed at the endless numbers of acoustic designs you can create.
For endless design possibilities, contact an expert at Arktura to discuss additional PET Felt ceiling panels options.