We’ve had our eye on NYC lifestyle boutique Nalata Nalata (located off the 2nd Avenue F stop) for some time. A glimpse at their stocked wares reveals the storytelling mission of co-founders Stevenson Aung and Angélique Chmielewski (Nalata Nalata is an acronym of the nicknames of Aung’s three sisters: NaNa, LangLang and TangTang). “We curate products that fit with our lifestyle and interests. As designers ourselves, we have a particular affinity for products that are quiet in nature but impeccably crafted,” Chmielewski tells CH. Most of the pieces are from Japanese designers and craftspeople whom the two have met personally—and continue to meet. The store is full of treasures: a copper-edged glass terrarium, created by 10¹² Terra, a design duo based in Chiba; a cherry tea case built by master wood artisan Norio Masakage in Hokkaido. There are also a few in-house denim cushions and wool blankets created by Nalata Nalata. Each and every piece inspires with its design, quality, intriguing beauty and underlying human touch. Nalata Nalata’s latest inspirational effort is bringing Futagami’s Matureware line to NYC for the first time, coinciding with NYCxDesign week.
The Japanese brass foundry has a successful line of timeless home goods created from sand-casted molds that includes trivets and even a crescent moon-shaped bottle opener. With Matureware, Futagami uses their sand-casting process to produce hardware—an oft-neglected category—that is warm and inviting. The Nalata Nalata founders first discovered the foundry through the works of their friend Oji Masanori, the designer of the Futagami Home Goods Collection. Continuing a relationship over time, Chmielewski and Aung even acted as consultants in the development of Matureware.
The 50 pieces in Matureware are organized into five categories: door handles, switch plates, shelf brackets, latches and name plaques. “Brass is a material that ages beautifully, producing a rich patina through oxidization,” says Chmielewski. “When brass is used in architectural hardware for commercial or residential spaces, these pieces become significant elements of functional ornamentation used to distinguish a space. We love the idea that these brass fixtures will grow with the people that occupy these spaces, gradually changing in character and appearance over time.”
“Matureware” makes its international debut at a special exhibition in-store at Nalata Nalata, 11-17 May 2016 during NYCxDesign Week. There’s an opportunity to meet designer Yamazaki Yoshiki and owner Toshihiro Futagami at the opening reception 11 May from 7-9PM, and the collection will become available for pre-order online or in-store after the opening day. Initially, Matureware products will be made-to-order but will later be stocked in limited quantities. Nalata Nalata is located at 2 Extra Place, New York 10003.
Read more about Futagami’s backstory at Nalata Nalata, written in both English and Japanese.
Images courtesy of Nalata Nalata