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Japanese minimalism, Melbourne style

Hidden away in a lane-way off Melbourne’s Clarendon Street is the Wynyard Café, little sister to Giddiup Café on Coventry Street.

Taking design cue from big brother Giddiup, which is connected to design shop Vincent2, Wynyard Café take its place adjoining Japanese home-wares store Made In Japan, and its this design aesthetic that is present throughout the space.

A dynamic sawtooth roof with full width windows fills the space with a generous pouring in of natural light, while painted brickwork and concrete floors provide a rich juxtaposing textural setting.

Joinery elements such as the coffee station and central unit sit freely within the space, and have been designed to function aesthetically as light furniture pieces, creating a space that feels full yet not cluttered. Detailing throughout takes cues from modernist Japanese furniture design; balancing form, colour and texture. The objects within the Wynyard Café are given a definitive presence through the usage of dark framing elements. This solidity and structure to the pieces is complemented through textured speckled infill work on panels, adding colour and a sense of playfulness.

A dark wall unit grounds the space and defining the center of the café as the area’s heart. Here is where coffee is made, bread is cut and customers are served. Linear plywood shelving elements rest against midnight navy and matte tiles, adding finesse and depth.

The Wynyard Café fit out and branding were handled in full by Adele Bates Design, which sees a unified aesthetic nappraoch from the design of the space, to the accents on the business cards. The café is an exercise in simplicity, playfulness and restraint, without coming across as too overtly minimal or cold.

Adele Bates Design










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