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Maximizing Space and Fun

Architecture Design Furniture Interior Japan Lighting Tableware

Whether for work or play, many of us feel drawn to the city. In fact, according to the United Nation’s World Urbanization Prospects report released in 2014, 54 percent of the world’s population currently live in an urban area. That’s more than half of the world’s population, and that number is expected to rise to as much as 66 percent by 2050. The United States alone already boasts 8 cities with populations over 5 million, and two megacities, New York and Los Angeles, with over 10 million inhabitants. Each of these cities is also predicted to add at least 1 million people to their population in the next 15 years. This increasing move towards city life puts space at a premium, and results in many of us opting for apartment and condo living. The question then becomes, what can we do to make these small spaces work for us as a home? One answer is to use furniture that maximizes space. As much as a home needs to function, though, it is also a space that should comfort and inspire us. Japanese furniture makers have been tackling this question of how to make the most of small spaces while preserving aesthetic interest, quality and personality, for centuries.
Sunset Shinjuku long
Source: Joi Ito, 2007


Japan is a country with a high ratio of mountainous, uninhabitable land, and as such the cities built on the inhabitable areas are very dense and populous, with rows of multi-story buildings pressed up right next to each other. From early on, a need developed in Japan for interior design that would maximize space. For Japanese furniture makers, this meant creating pieces that were compact enough to fit in a small space, yet still able serve their purpose well; lightweight enough to be moved to serve various functions, yet durable enough to survive the wear and tear of daily life. Through a combination of their designs, their techniques, and the materials they used, Japanese craftsman were able to achieve these goals.

The shape and variety of Japanese furniture may have changed over the years, but the ideals of maximizing space and function while maintaining quality, have not. With urbanization only showing signs of increasing in the future, now is the optimal time for this tradition to be shared with the rest of the world.

Brick-Block Brick-Block 2 Brick-Block 3


Our Micro-Living collection here at OOKKUU best exemplifies this tradition of maximizing space, in a way that is very adaptable to modern life. The collection finds ways to utilize space to the fullest while infusing every aspect with creativity and fun. Our Brick-Block chests and shelves are a prime example of this. The Brick-Blocks are light and stackable, able to be arranged to fit any space and need, with an open back to maintain an airy feeling. Shelves and chests can be mix-matched and arranged to provide both organization and a space to showcase beloved items without giving the room a cluttered appearance. Additionally, the Brick-Blocks are made of solid oak, with the finest joint details, to ensure their durability no matter how many times they are moved and reconfigured. They are the perfect union of fun and function. 

Having a customizable, well-organized space gives visual interest to a room, but an ideal living space also needs to be comfortable to be in.This is where the Micro Living collection excels, as it also offers various sofas that are petite enough to not overpower a room while still being extremely comfortable and inviting. The FUK and cobrina sofa lines pair adorable designs with plush cushioning that comes in a variety of fresh colors and fabrics. With their playful designs and colors, these sofas can easily work as a focal point to any room.





Fuk FUK sofacobrina cobrina sofa

Along with these pieces, our Micro-Living collection offers a variety of tables, chairs, and stools that can be easily integrated to create the combination that will offer the perfect amount of display and entertaining space. Let our OOKKUU staff help you create a space that will feel like home no matter its size by visiting our showroom or website at https://ookkuu.com/collections/micro-living.

By Danielle Johnson, from your OOKKUU Team

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