With cost-competitiveness sweeping through the manufacturing industry like an angry lady with a broom, sparing only those with the strength to scale up capacity and scale down price, what are Japan’s small companies and artisans to do? Inevitably, embrace. That is the philosophy of mass item, a new store started by Takashi Yoshida aimed at exploring the possibilities of plastic. He has enlisted 3 designers to assist him – 2 of which, if you are familiar with spoon & tamago, you should be familiar with as well – Shunsuke Umiyama (Microworks), Norihiko Terayama (Studio Note) and newcomer Kumano Wataru.

Although the pieces have a highly manufactured quality to them, every piece gets finished off with a human touch – whether it is vibration finish or a hand-assembly. I like the idea of subtle resistance. Here is an overview of what they have done for the shop.

Ladder by Microworks (he seems to be obsessed with ladders)

Layerscape by Studio Note

Tokyo Clock by Kumano Wataru