Where architecture is not about the manifestation of the built but making
As Architects and designers, we wonder about the extent of our own professions. The depth and the varying connotations of the terms ‘Architecture’, ‘Design’ are something which one can immerse into discussions and dwell on for hours. Often in the process of designing, architects pay great attention to detailing, materiality, craftsmanship, precision, aesthetics. But, in a design community, architects are not the only ones who consider some of these values as their guiding principles. It extends to the art and craftsmanship of making objects of everyday use to clothing to the scale of the city.
Based in Saint Augustine, Florida, Yield Design is one such in-house design unit and manufacturer that imbibes in these principles for their architecture of making a wide range of products for everyday use. Co-founded by Rachel Gant and Andrew Deming in 2012, Yield design is setting a new trend for American standards of everyday objects with their minimalistic approach to blend traditional values with thoughtful modern innovations. Their manifesto boils down the essence of what is important to retain the core values of the elements to then be able to create timeless designs. Beauty, sustainability and ethical production set Yield design apart. Their production process consists of finding sustainable resources such as glass, wood, leather which then aims to achieve the balance between technology, craft, and modern design.
The popularity of the profession of industrial design constantly challenged the duo to attempt to create something that is aesthetically pleasing, relatable, minimal yet not mainstream. The beauty of their process in making these hand-crafted products is their personal touch to every product. Their design products shed light on this dialogue of product design as a cultural extension to architecture which is beyond built spaces and environment.
The primary working space for the Yield design is a procured site of a warehouse in one of the oldest settlements of Saint Augustine in Florida. This space is where design, photography, prototyping takes place along with the production and finishing touches to some of the softer products.
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The open floor plan of the studio is flexible to organize into many different configurations. The temporality, flexibility and multivalence in their thought approach is distinct in the products as well.
Ranging from bags, jewelry, kitchen appliances, home-décor, Yield intends to reinvent the ingenuity of American craft with modern innovations and technological approaches.
Collection line of in-house products
The collection of Yield’s products attunes to the innovative ideas and customization in industrial design style. Available in numerous possibilities of colours, shapes and textures of glass, aluminum, brass, and wood, it makes the maximum procurement of what is probable. User requirements ranging from elegant touch to savor one’s taste buds of leather to minimalistic approach are all met with fine craftsmanship and expressions.
1. Madeira Coffee table
In the fond memory of Isamu Noguchi, this aesthetically pleasing Madeira coffee table brings together the expressive curvilinear, elevated form to that of the latest production techniques. This simple yet classy and elegant detail of interlocking gives an edge to its visual appeal. The table can be customised in a variety of materials from wood to acrylic and glass and their colours.
2. Sundial Coffee table
The Sundial Coffee Table is an intriguing table. With light appearance and use of acrylic as the base makes it perceive as a floating set of vertical elements. Intersecting planes support the circular top and the use of glass, acrylic weaves in the mystic play of light and shadow. The availability of the table in different colour combinations of a glass or acrylic base makes it fit to best match the taste of one’s choice and the context of the space.
3. Duotone Diamond side table
The Duotone Side Table is a modular minimal table with an interesting design that pairs sturdy details and light visual appearance. Easy to assemble, this side table makes no use of any additional hardware. The base is precisely made of solid aluminum layered with glass and opaque surface mosaic.
4. French press
The traditional French-press method of brewing coffee finds a new appearance at Yield. Crafted with fineness, this French press is available in both ceramic and glass body. The ceramic French press is massive in appearance and its high walled body helps in maintaining the temperature of the coffee during the brewing process.
As opposed to the mass of the ceramic French Press, The Glass French Press, an evolution of the classic press pot is minimal and light design. For it to maintain a consistent temperature, it is made of durable, heatproof borosilicate glass. The Glass French Press is an uncompromising marriage of function and beauty. Dishwasher safe.
5. Wooden planter stand
Made of wood and available in two sizes of 8” and 16”, this planter stand is a classy touch to lift the pots. With their conscious attempt of reducing the complicated use of hardware or tools, this simple, minimal yet elegant intersection of wooden expressive elements adds a charm to the green space. Indeed, a product reflective of its fine craftsmanship and thoughtful detail.
6. Hand spun copper Planter stand
Yet another design reflecting the ingenuity of the sustainable use of making the planter stand from a single sheet of copper. It is a 16” planter with the details worked out to make it self-watering. 1.25” of a catchment area of water at the base is divided by a perforated aluminium disc. This prevents the rotting of the roots and separates soil from water. Also, it evaporates back into the soil when it starts becoming dry. Clever use of materials and innovation techniques recommends it for highly elegant indoor spaces.
7. Picnic bag
The multivalence design of the carry bag that unfolds into a blanket, makes it convenient to carry, transport and is efficient in the use and storage of space. Born out of the need and the desire to eat snacks in a park freshly bought from the market, this water-resistant bag has zippers instead of seams to make it unfurl and unfold to a picnic blanket in one go.
8. Geo stands
Geo-stands are distinct and different from traditional photo frames and photo-holders. Multivalent in nature as desk accessories, these stands are an elegant paper-weights which can be used as the display for photographs or as cardholders. The simple design makes it very convenient to use without any difficult maneuver. These stands are available in three varieties of shapes (cube, sphere, pyramid) and materials (brass, aluminum, glass).
9. Photo bar
A copper-plated steel bar with magnets gives an elegant look to the function of the display of photos in one’s space. This minimal design and thoughtful simple detail make it a subtle innovation.
The Architect Series candles and incense are inspired by a selection of the founders’ favorite 20th-century architects. These candles try to capture and distil the distinct elements of the context of the architect in the smell of the fragrance of the incense. These candles are a clever play of juxtaposition of abstract elements into a finite composition of that of the candle.
These products at the first glance seem to not make any bold statement with extensive ornamentation to attract but rather thoughtful, simple and elegant designs that make one wonder about this art of making and detailing. With clarity in the approach of not losing the core traditional essence of elements and sustainable practice of producing with honesty, Yield puts forth designs of objects that challenge the conventions. They put forth their products that speak for themselves by using materials thoughtfully with innovative design elements. This simplistic approach by and large, reflects back in the design process in architecture. With firms like Yield, a whole new direction and extent of what all are the cultural components of Architecture open up.