Archives for posts with tag: Coffee Shops

What is Freese Coffee Co?

…Superb coffee, food and hospitality by the Finnish Barista Champion 2013 Kalle Freese… Source


London – Shoreditch is where all (real) coffee shop activity is taking place.

Just go to Liverpool Street tube station and walk around that district.

There a few coffee roasters around and delightful espresso bars too. To name a few: Nude espresso, Ozone, the notorious Brick Lane Coffee, Prufrock…etc.

But if you explore East London there is something which is not that obvious to check out: Boxpark (virtual tour HERE).

Boxpark Shoreditch London

Boxpark Shoreditch London

It might look like a place where containers are stored but in fact, it is a kind of (new) urban design involving various types of shops going from food to fashion and other unusual purveyors of goods. The city has this unique location of industrial looking pop-up stores…some shops have been here for a while and others are temporary, because of these shipping containers, which make the entire retail space changeable with a flexibility regarding floor plans.

Boxpark also has #Guardiancoffee:

…Launched in partnership with EE, #guardiancoffee welcomes anyone and everyone to drop by to debate the issues pertinent to the UK’s tech sector, share ideas and opinions, or simply enjoy a great cup of coffee… Source

Nude espresso being the coffee supplier for this concept.

Having such a specific place to create a non-permanent shopping village could definitely be the way forward for start-ups. Costs and commitments being limited and certainly not too high,  give the opportunity to independent businesses to make a mark in the retail industry, whatever the sector.

In other parts of the United Kingdom, some Councils give the right to use empty shops for a short period of time. However, something else would/could be interesting: using empty office spaces as shops. Rather than having stores looking like a traditional shopping centre, all could be situated on different levels but in one unique building. Ground floor could be for clothing, first floor would shelter shoes and rooftop a coffee shop or restaurant with (ideally) a view.

So many towns and cities are thinking of a long term investment and therefore decide to convert empty office buildings into apartments, because it is almost risk free: the income will be guaranteed without a fear of a financial loss for the years to come. Going on the property ladder being a dream for so many, especially after the painful credit crunch.

If Boxpark is so straight forward why can’t we see something similar appearing throughout the country/world? A container is not that expensive compared to a real shop!? It can be adjusted easily and quickly according to what is needed.

One day it can have a counter and chairs and the other it could shelter an art exhibition by just using the existing and original walls.

Boxpark London Clothing - Photo Credit: Robert Wade

Boxpark London Clothing – Photo Credit: Robert Wade

Pop-ups are truly part of the 21st century, probably because of the flexibility and short term trading options.

shipping container

shipping container

By now we do know that coffee shops and espresso bars have changed from the basic place to have a quick hot drink to a social meeting place.

Customers like to spend time in such places either before or after work – even during their lunch break. The main idea is to forget the daily stress and “recharge the batteries”.

Most places do have daily newspapers. According to the available space, there is even a kind of little library/bookshop corner.

It can go one step further as well: coffee table books. Great quality items, usually related to food and drink, music, fashion, design and coffee.

Coffee table book

Coffee table book

In general these books have been given by the owner or the barista as well. It is a good way to recycle and re-use what would go into the bin.

Customers always like to go through some kind of visual treat, whatever the publication date.

Nowadays, anything related to aesthetic is a win: the image is the first thing that people see and usually make their mind up too.

It works in retail and fashion. How many times in fact, individuals are buying shoes or clothes because the colour and shape are appealing. However, it doesn’t mean that it will be easy to take care of it.

There is an instant welcoming feel when such products are on shelves or tables. In other words it creates a natural harmony – it is neither too cluttered nor too clinical. Finding the right balance in a business is rather important.

More and more coffee places are going for the warm/simple and cosy décor!

This trend is also adopted by publisher. As a prime example Bare magazine/journal.

Bare issue 1 - Death of a dead man by Bastian Gunther

Bare issue 1 – Death of a dead man by Bastian Gunther

…Holding Bare magazine in your hands or flicking idly through it on the tube, you’d be forgiven realising that there was something different about it without being able to put your finger on exactly what that is. Printed on heavy uncoated stock and without a single retouched photograph between its front and back pages, the difference is subtle, but it’s there… Source

Bare issue 1

Bare issue 1

Overall, it seems that layout and graphic design of the actual printed/published edition or issue (whether hard copy or digital) are what potential readers are looking for. Check some book covers by Astrid Stavro HERE.

Graphic design and typography by Astrid Stavro

Graphic design and typography by Astrid Stavro