Archive for the ‘they speak’ Category

they speak: HUKUROU

August 3, 2009

I bought some shoes from this store recently. They are very, very lovely. Hand-made by the artist they fulfil my ever-strong desire for originality. I also bought some cute anchor earrings. I am still a sucker for anchors even though they have now thoroughly entered mainstream fashion.

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HUKUROU is one cute place to shop. It is located in Taichung’s Art Street and full to the brim with handcrafted items, from earrings, pendants and clothing to rubber stamps, toys and knitted pen covers. (I really don’t know how to describe these objects but they look like finger puppets and fit over the top of your pen.) Anyone who receives a gift from me in the post over the next few months can be assured it will come from this store.

Luckily for me, the owner, Faby, speaks English so I was able to ask her a few quick questions…

JoB: Why did you decide to open a store like HUKUROU?
F: I began creating design work three years ago. At that time, I hoped I could have my own shop to sell my works in Taiwan.

JoB: When did HUKUROU open? What does the name mean?
F: The shop opened in February, 2009. HUKUROU means “owl” in Japanese. It’s also the name of my brand. HUKUROU also means “happiness” and “work hard” in Japanese and I liked that ethos.

Hukurou_ShopFront

JoB: So, you studied design in Seattle. When and how long for?
F: I stayed in Seattle for five years where I studied visual communication, which is similar to graphic and web design.

JoB: Do you design any of the items you sell?
F: I design all of the accessories in my shop. Every item includes a hand-painted feature piece.

JoB: How do you select the work that appears in HUKUROU? Is it by choosing stuff that you like, or stuff that you know will sell?
F: When I was planning the shop, I started to research what kinds of stuff I wanted to have. Then, I tried to select brands that matched the style and look I wanted.

JoB: You mentioned you represent 20 designers? Can you name some of them? Are they all from Taiwan or are they also from abroad?
F: All of the designers are Taiwanese. The shoes are designed under the label, White Not. The designer paints her designs on blank shoes and will make to order. One of our bag designers works under the label One Dog. All of the bags she designs are shaped liked dogs. Her designs usually start with a story and people like to collect the whole set.

Hukurou_WhiteNot

White Not

One Dog

One Dog

JoB: Is Art Street the right location for your store? If yes, why?
F: I’m really happy to have my shop in Art Street! It’s not a very busy location, but it’s just what I want. People come to Art Street because they want to find something new or some specialist design works.

JoB: What did you do after studying and before starting HUKUROU?
F: Before I started my own brand and this shop I worked in Taipei as a bag designer for Disney.

JoB: What are your favorite places to go in Taichung (for music, food, shopping…)?
F: Actually, I don’t have a lot time to go out now I have opened the shop. I usually go to Daiso, a great place to shop place if you don’t want to spend too much. All of the goods in Daiso are $39 NT! Another place I like to go is Eslite; it’s not just a bookstore, it’s also a mall. They have a great food court, too.

Visit their website for more pics and a map.

Hukurou_ShopInside
Images courtesy of HUKUROU.

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