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ITAFE locates in the small county Yiwu, which famous for its small commodity trade and vibrant market. ITAFE only sells tea, bread and coffee, but provides new lifestyles for Yiwu. The project activates the life of surroundings by opening itself and pioneering design concept, bringing the new topic and leisure spot to this small city.

This project take the slogan of ITAFE, light your life, as the inner spirit. It contains two meanings, one for bright; one for slim. One of the key elements is the openable facade. With the outdoor seating, the whole shop open itself to the entire block, on one hand, bringing the natural light and fresh air into the shop, on the other hand, providing an extra place for the elderly and local residents to have a rest.

Move over, the materials used in this project were strictly chosen for the performance of natural light. Stainless steel, black coated metal, cement, artificial stone are the only materials appeared in this shop, so one of the challenge was to explode the possibility of different form and various functions represented by the same material in this project.

In the end, it brought us both the bright and slim visual effect. Besides, the LED screen, which normally considered as the last element to be used in a coffee shop, were introduced in the project in order to emphasis the interaction between ITAFE and the people who live here.

In the design process, ITAFE insisted on achieving business success as well as creating society value, which going to be the design tendency in the future. The market positioning and design style perfectly fill the gap of local people’s lifestyle and aesthetic preference. Since its open, ITAFE became one of the most stylish and well known place in Yiwu.

Architects: daylab studio
Architect in Charge: Docee Dong
Design Team: Aimee Liu, Lucx Lu
Photographs: Peter Dixie


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