S T O R E  &  A R C H I V E

Higher production numbers meant a move away from a simple home production setting into their first small industrial unit.  This enable larger batches of products to be made and stored for YOKO.

 

The studio is conceived as a self contained making space within the overall unit.  This studio has been hand carved and built using strong influences of Japanese joinery techniques.

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Location: Bermondsey, London, UK

Type: Refurbishment

Client: YOKO Lifestyle Limited

Status: Completed

Year: 2019

Based in a disused Biscuit Factory in Bermondsey, South London, ‘YOKO a healthy dog lifestyle’ recently commissioned design studio ‘Store & Archive’ to design and build a bespoke timber studio space.

 

Higher production numbers meant a move away from a simple home production setting into their first small industrial unit.  This enables larger batches of products to be made and stored for the healthy dog treat business which is looking to revolutionise the current dog market.

YOKO is the first real design-led brand in the UK and it is important that this is integral to every part of the business.  The studio build itself represents their approach and is therefore seen as a testing ground for ideas.

 

The studio itself is conceived as a self-contained timber making space positioned within the overall 140sqft unit.   The founders wanted to reflect their approach for a design-led dog business that was sensitive in atmospheric qualities and epitomises honest materiality though craftsmanship.

 

The YOKO team were eager to use specific design traits from small Japanese structures, rather than a prefabricated system.  The design was developed through conflicting thoughts – that of desiring a bespoke space whilst using cheap off the shelf readily available materials.  What resulted though this process was an approach that allowed a sense of experimentation in order to develop new skills of joinery.  Being carved by hand added the notion of craftsmanship to their story; an honesty that celebrates certain imperfections.  The rawness of readily available construction timber complements the aesthetic of the handmade treat biscuit process.

 

The timber structure has been hand carved and built using strong influences of Japanese joinery techniques.  “It is seen as much more of a sketch model at 1:1 scale, allowing cheap off the shelf structural timbers to be carved and tested.  There were limitations which have been embraced during the process, namely the lack of experience to carve by hand, however this adds to the narrative, helping to highlight the making process.

 

The timber ‘makers space’ measures 2.4m x 2.4m and was constructed using simple techniques, resembling a Japanese tea house structure or small pavilion.  Towards the front, a horizontal slot window frames the main activity within the unit - making, rolling, cutting treat mixtures - resisting the need to show faces it makes the viewing simply that of the making process.

 

Equipment and ingredients are cleverly stored behind sliding timber doors which have been fashioned from off cuts of strip timber rather than expensive roller solutions.

 

The unit comprises of a storage space for equipment and raw ingredients, a space to make the treats, and a place to industrially dehydrate products.

 

Essentially the whole timber unit acts as an odour buffer to prevent food smells escaping beyond the unit into neighbouring studios whilst raw products are dehydrated over twelve hour periods.

 

Although complex and time consuming in preparation of joints, the structure is relatively simple in its construction, sheets of timber are slotted into routered grooves in the posts in order to form the final structure.

 

Untreated raw linen panels slot between the timber posts to create a warmth of materiality.  The sensitivity towards a material texture and the way light and shadow touches the surface represents the studios fascination with small Japanese makers spaces.

 

Store & Archive plan on developing further small structures as a testing ground for making – helping to redefine the overall design process of drawing, modelling and making, inevitably crafting a new kind of skilled practice.

 

 

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YOKO Studio

Small Industrial Unit Refurbishment

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Store & Archive

Studio 28, 2nd Floor

F Block, The Biscuit Factory

100 Clements Road

London

SE16 4DG