Truth Coffee Shop

Name: Truth Coffee Shop
Location: Cape Town, South Africa
Design: Haldane Martin

One of the most noticeable trends throughout the world currently is the influx of industrial. With a raw nature, truth of materials, and authenticity it is easy to see how so many have grown to love this aesthetic. As with any trend, there grows the group of people who yearn to be different and to expand past what is 'trendy'. One of the most common trends I see coming into favor is Steampunk. While I can see direct link from industrial to steampunk, I feel the need to stress that these two styles are by no means the same. Truth Coffee Shop is a great example of what steampunk represents and showcases the differences between the two styles flawlessly. 

The steampunk style relies heavily on the mixture science fiction and steam powered machinery. Blurring the line between industry and decoration, steampunk can incorporate a varying degree of components and characteristics. 

While both styles showcase natural woods and metals, steampunk does so in a mechanical way. Touches of Victorian and Art Nouveau can be witnessed through the rich hues, ornate details, and elaborate curves. 

What I love about the Truth Coffee space is that they took the machinery and components of coffee roasting and brewing and used them as inspiration for their steampunk interior. By imagining these machines as both form and function, they crafted a space that perfectly blends the machinery with the art of coffee. 

All images © This is colossal


Name: Maison
Location: South Africa

I love the simplicity and openness that is shown throughout Maison. A winery with a tasting room, deli, and restaurant; all spaces work in harmony but still give a large graphic punch. 

The use of blonde wood, stark acrylic chairs, and polished white creates an airiness throughout the space. Paired with the worn barn wood, stacked logs, and wine bottle chandelier, each spaces still exuded warmth and remains inviting. 

The use of furniture and fixtures that are also light and airy in appearance helps extend the open feeling of the space. 

 Images © Weheartco & Maison

Kitchen at Weylandts

Name: The Kitchen at Weylandts
Location: South Africa

A prominent home furnishings store in South Africa, Weylandts has taken on a fun twist to in-store-dining. Located on the top floor of their shop, they have set up a restaurant focused on fresh, seasonal, and local ingredients that come together to create simple, thoughtful dishes. The space itself is bursting with unique details and evokes warmth and creativity. The space's simple palate creates an almost Scandinavian feel with the Louis ghost chairs adding a layer of airiness to the bright space.

All images © Elle Decor SA


Name: Nando's
Location: Kent, England (Originally started in South Africa)
Designer: Blacksheep

Chain restaurants typically don't do much for me on the design front. However, it seems more and more brands are starting to realize the importance design makes in a successful business, chain or not.
With brands like McDonalds and Starbucks hiring design firms and rebranding their store experiences, it seems our interactions with chain restaurants could drastically change over the next few years. One chain that clearly recognizes the importance of design on brand recognition is Nando's. Originally of South Africa, they have expanded globally. The space below, located in England was designed by Blacksheep is tastefully done. Utilizing natural materials and playing with color, they have managed to achieve a space that feels original and unique while also remaining warm and inviting.

All images © Design Milk

Clarke's Bar & Dining Room

Name: Clarke's Bar & Dining Room
Location: Cape Town, South Africa

Clarke's is on of those places that I wish was located in the US. The minimalist exterior, simple and clear signage, use of natural materials and execution of contrast are perfect. The entire place feels cohesive, seamless, comfortable, and carefree. Clarke's is a perfect example of well done simplicity and a reminder to us all that we don't need more for the space to feel special.

all photos © Guy With Camera


Location: Drakenstein Valley( Located in the heart of the Cape Winelands about 45min. north of Cape Town, South Africa)

I have wanted to go to South Africa for as long as I can remember. Stumbling across this small vacation property and large farm re-lit the fire inside me. Take a look at the photos below and I'm sure you will see why.

The property is a 17th century Dutch(!love it, obviously) farmyard that was built in the Cape Dutch Tradition. The Cape Dutch style typically includes white-washed stone or brick walls,  thatched roofs and ornate gables. The property features a large farm and guests can enjoy picking their own salads, guided tours through the farm, or a meal at the properties restaurant where they use the materials grown on site.

The simplicity and pureness of the area draws me in and I adore the graphic tile wall in the restaurant where the daily menu is written.
The suites are also beautiful and feature small kitchens where you can prepare your own meals, using fruits and vegetables you picked right outside your door.

All photos copyright Babylonstoren

Carne SA

Name: Carne SA
Location: Cape Town, South Africa

This space feels completely raw, but in a purposeful way. I love the contrast between the exposed materials and the extremely chic ghost chairs. The space was designed for longevity and the style was catered to match the food being served. They were going for an "Italian butcher-shop eatery" and used classic elements found in traditional butcher shops in Italy to direct the material selection for the space. The stainless steel floors, for example, seem to be a reference to the stainless steel meat slicer. The space has a great "no-fuss" feel and is just different enough to be visually interesting while still maintaining complete comfort and function.

All images © The Contemporist