Could you share with us the story behind starting yuko design?
I suppose the foundations started after my first trip to Japan in 2014 - I was often being asked for recommendations by friends and various people who were travelling there.
Last year I travelled throughout Europe for two months and when I got back to Melbourne I made my second book including recommendations for Paris and Copenhagen. I showed this to a friend whose opinion I really value - She gave such an
encouraging response and was actually the first person to commission a book.
Various friends saw the production of this book and from here I started to receive orders for travel books and customised product. Yuko design developed from this point and has consistently grown since officially launching in December 2016.
"THERE ARE NO SHORTCUTS IN THE WORK I CREATE, SO TIME AND PATIENCE ARE ESSENTIAL IN MY PRACTICE."
What are your aspirations for yuko design moving forward?
The freelance side of yuko is continuously growing and I am driven to explore this further. I am currently working on multiple projects including invitations and binding books for a photographer. There is also the prospect of printing which I am looking into at the moment. I would also like to focus on the development of my current product selection, as well as expanding the offering. It is a lengthy process though - A lot of thought and time goes into the execution and there are never enough hours in a day
What is your favourite city you have visited?
Tokyo is the obvious choice for many reasons; my practice has been inspired by elements of Japanese culture and aesthetic, and I source my materials from Tokyo, which has given me the opportunity to travel here frequently and become familiar with the city. Regardless of how busy I am when in Tokyo, there is always a sense of calm and comfort, and the orderly city culture resonates with me personally and professionally.
Where would you next like to visit/travel?
I feel a strong desire to visit South Africa, South Korea, and return to Poland; I would like to learn more about their design industries, cultures and traditions, and be able to explore their countrysides.
What would you consider to be the driving elements of your design process?
Creating product that is unique, considered and handcrafted is really significant in my design process, and I am continuously driven to produce work where these elements are combined.
All yuko design product that I have created so far has been individually hand written and hand bound, therefore organisation and methodical thinking are of a huge importance within my process and execution.
I have recently completed my second collaboration with Aesop. This consisted of 65 handwritten and hand bound books for customer events for the launch of Room Sprays; The workshops were based on the tradition of Kodo, the Japanese art of appreciating incense. Taking this brief and our previous collaboration into consideration, I wanted this book to be unique and interactive for Aesop customers. The book is bound with linen thread which wraps around the exterior allowing customers to unravel and explore. The design appreciates empty space through the placement of
text and features three different papers, incorporating texture and weight.
TAKEO PAPER / TOKYO
Do you have a favourite collaborative project created by yuko design?
My favourite collaboration is a bespoke project that is ongoing - I work with a close friend to create yuko fabric envelopes for various projects and products. It is a really important part of my practice to work with people who I feel a connection with. My friend and I share a similar appreciation for fine details and craftsmanship and because of this, we work well together. We have a mutual understanding when it comes to creating detailed, handcrafted product and I am so thankful for the beautiful work he produces. We are currently working on envelopes for upcoming projects, using a variation of fabrics, colours and designs.
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