Founded in the quiet neighbourhood of Yanaka, Tokyobike makes bicycles tailored to the streets of Tokyo and with an emphasis on comfort, rather than speed. Following the launch of their Yanaka-based rental service, Tokyobike approached me to develop an online city guide that would introduce the charms of the east side of Tokyo to a global audience.
Cycling through the slow-paced streets of east Tokyo feels like a gentle dance, an experience that provided the starting point for developing this project. From researching neighbourhoods both central and far flung to interviewing natural dyeing artisans, scrubbing brush specialists and established designers, the guide was brought to life on two wheels.
The resulting guide embodies the brand’s philosophy and serves as a gateway to a community of enduring destinations with a welcoming atmosphere and local character. Rather than a cyclist’s guide, it is a guide inspired by travelling through the city on a bicycle.
As a former student residence and studio saved from demolition by a last-gasp art exhibition, Hagiso reopened in 2013 as a small-scale cultural complex for the Yanaka community.
Adding a touch of nature to the streets of Kuramae, Maito is an atelier and shop specialising in naturally dyed goods. Based on simple, understated designs, the shop’s original clothing and accessories showcase a range of rich colours.
Featuring a sleek interior and a wholehearted dedication to the humble scrubbing brush, Kamenoko Tawashi is a curious addition to the famous curves of Hebi-michi in Yanaka.
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