Aesop Brighton

The new Aesop store in Brighton is a lesson in seaside bliss

BY CLAIRE BINGHAM

The trend for wellness in interior design is growing. The bolstering effect of a wisely chosen colour can be as soul-feeding as being outside in the open air. Imagine a yellow front door intended to energise and uplift, or a chalky deep purple in a hallway, the painterly equivalent of a warm and welcoming hug… Colour is key to luring buyers and going green is one of the most enticing tips when it comes to inducing calm.

Transporting the serenity of the seaside to home decor, minus any nautical tropes, luxury plant-based Australian skin and haircare brand Aesop has gone head-to-toe verdigris for the palette of its new Brighton store. In the North Laine quarter, it’s the first for the coastal resort and one of only a few UK boutiques outside London. Conjuring up wistful memories of childhood holidays and a simpler life, the blue-green interior echoes the oxidised railings of the city’s seashore with its idyllic Victoriana, backdropped by cloudy skies and an opaque sea.

Aesop.jpg

As with each of the distinctive global Aesop concept stores – often created in collaboration with outside designers, but here delivered by the in-house team – the decor is simple. In one room, a scrubbed farmhouse table has rush seating placed around it, while in another area, porcelain sinks for product sampling add to the domestic scene. Elsewhere, the space is kept empty, save for vintage botanical prints or artfully stacked decorative bookshelves.

At a time when maximalism is dominating many design stories, Aesop makes an eternal case for the beauty of minimal design. Inherently chic, this blissful interior proves that decorating simply is something to aspire to – as is having a display of Aesop products adorning your bathroom shelf!
aesop.com

Aesop Brighton 104-105 Gloucester Road, Brighton, UK

Native & Co

Form an orderly queue for understated pieces from Japan and Taiwan at Native & Co, Notting Hill's newest bastion of cool, calm design... 

BY DEE IVA

native-and-co-owners.jpg

Native & Co is an independent lifestyle store where two cultures meet. Former Central Saint Martins graduates Chris Yoshiro Green and Sharon Jo-Yun Hung have curated a pared back selection of artisanal accessories sourced in Japan and Taiwan to create a stylish haven for the simple things in life. 

Filling the gap between specialist stores selling traditional Japanese pieces and Muji’s modern minimal vision of Japanese design, London boutique Native & Co is also determined to bring harder-to-find Taiwanese accessories to our attention.

ABOVE: 'Copper Kettle' £220; porcelain 'Tea Cup' £16; 'Washi Laptop Case' (in basket) by Naota Fukusawa, from £28
ABOVE RIGHT: Sharon Jo-Yun Hung and Chris Yoshiro Green
BELOW: 'Arita Porcelain Kitchenware' by Makoto Koizumi, from £15

From utilitarian canvas aprons with leather straps to graphic cushions and handcrafted handbags, Taiwan’s modern design aesthetic sits very well alongside Japanese copper graters, elegant Arita porcelain and hammered steel tea strainers. 

TOP ROW FROM LEFT: Hammered Tea Strainer and Saucer' from £9.50; 'Leather Tote Bag (V-Style)' £360; 'Tengui' cloths from £16
BOTTOM ROW FROM LEFT: 'Heavy Canvas Apron with Leather Straps' by GR Studio, £65; 'Copper Grater' £36; 'Manbo Seat Cushion' by Bu Wu, £35 

British-Japanese Chris and Taiwan-born Sharon were inspired to found the store after a research trip to discover Taiwan's native craft traditions. Beautifully made, relaxed designs from small suppliers and local craftsmen is the name of the game here. Think momma’s old chopping board with a sharp-as-you-like knife and you’ve got the picture…
nativeandco.com