Wataru Kumano converts Japanese factory into sweet shop

Wataru Kumano converts disused Japanese factory into sweet shop

Japanese designer Wataru Kumano has transformed an old confectionary warehouse into a sweet shop that prepares and serves only one type of sugary treat (+ slideshow).

Shibafune-Koide by Wataru Kumano

Located in Kanazawa, the shop is the second retail space for century-old Japanese confectioner Shibafune-Koide, and is situated within a building once used for manufacturing.

Shibafune-Koide by Wataru Kumano

While the first store serves a wide range of sweet products, this new branch will only sell Monaka – a Japanese candy made of jam filling sandwiched between two thin crisp wafers.

"From the beginning, we decided to use the old factory space, because Shibafune-koide has a new factory in another place," said Kumano.

"We made a new facade on the old factory wall, and put a new box inside the space."

Shibafune-Koide by Wataru Kumano

Kumano previously collaborated with British designer Jasper Morrison on the design of a self-assembly chair. For this project, he teamed up with graphic designer Hiromura Masaaki.

Shibafune-Koide by Wataru Kumano

The designers opted for simple materials for the interior. Translucent polycarbonate sheets and plasterboard were used to create walls with varying opacity.

Shibafune-Koide by Wataru Kumano

A kitchen and cash desk at the back of the space are visible through holes in a wooden wall. Here, customers can choose their flavour of Monaka and watch it being made by on-site patisserie chefs.

Shibafune-Koide by Wataru Kumano

They can then sit down to eat at a series of custom-built wooden tables and stools.

Shibafune-Koide by Wataru Kumano

Architect Yuko Nagayama also recently designed a cafe-cum-sweet shop in Japan, which was designed to look like two separate buildings with a tree sandwiched in the middle.

Photography is by Sohei Oya.