Our Nkuku Lifestyle Store and Café is now open. It was nearly two years ago that we first stumbled across a beautiful courtyard of stone barns, located just outside Totnes. The buildings were originally dedicated to farming and cattle and had been derelict for twenty years. Despite the exposure to the elements and neglect there was a certain magic to the space. Our first taste of the site was enough to inspire us and as we stood surrounded by decaying timber, rubble and a fair amount of cow muck, we saw our first Nkuku store coming to life.
The buildings themselves are laid out in a horseshoe shape with a courtyard within. This area is south facing and even on cold days if the sun is shining it is a lovely sheltered spot. We were keen to keep as many of the original features as possible and stay true to the original building. In keeping with our Nkuku principles we wanted to restore rather than re-build. This set about a number of research projects, searching for reclaimed materials and other suitable resources. There was also a fine balance to be found between aesthetic and practicalities. We managed to keep several original stone walls by over insulating other areas of the building. Maintaining these important details really makes the building what it is today.
The windows were another vital factor, and after considerable research and discussions we found a local steel fabricator who skilfully built each frame from raw steel. The effect was astounding, and the transformation that took place provided the finishing touch to the overall look that we wanted to achieve.
The total area of the store is 3000 square meters, amazingly we have struggled to fit everything in! In addition to our collection of homewares, gifts and accessories, we now have the perfect space to showcase our bespoke furniture collections. A separate modern barn, but no less stylish, lies adjacent to store and our resident carpenter now has a new workshop. which is a great space in which to build our collections.
In addition to the workshop this new modern barn is dedicated to our new collection of beautiful reclaimed one off pieces. This includes a broad selection of furniture and decorative items from sideboards and chests, to wardrobes, fire pits, ornaments and quirky pieces from old cinema seats to ornate tool boxes.
In the original building we've created a mezzanine floor, which is dedicated to our new collections of sofas and arm chairs. Handmade to order, these pieces are made in the UK, and there are number of styles and fabrics to choose from. This floor also showcases our collection of ottomans, lamps, soft furnishings and accessories.
Last but not least we are excited to open our first Nkuku café. This atmospheric space has been styled with Nkuku products and reclaimed materials. Our café serves the finest artisan, wood roasted coffee. Served by an experience barista each blend has been personally curated ensuring a delicious flavour. We have sourced local suppliers for our beverages and freshly made cakes, and light lunches. As you can imagine the research for this aspect of the lifestyle store was particularly taxing.
The term ‘Lifestyle Store’ derived from the fact that we wanted to somehow encompass all the products that we offer from pieces for your home to accessories for the individual. We hope our products and collections will suit your lifestyle and that you will enjoy visiting our store.