Oku room is a Melbourne-based furniture brand founded by a trio of designers and manufacturers with a desire to create high quality sustainable furniture for residential and commercial markets. In February 2020, Oku Space founders Nick Rennie, Brett Julian and Dustin Fritsche decided to pool their expertise to develop a furniture series. They’d shared the workshop space for a number of years, were good friends, and knew each other’s strengths – Brett and Dustin’s extensive furniture manufacturing experience and Nick’s expertise in developing award-winning product designs.
Oku Space’s first collection consists of 11 pieces, a range of storage, seating, dining and office furniture. The wood-oriented collection is a demonstration of the founders’ precise design combined with expert craftsmanship. The flagship is the OS1, a four-way stackable dining room chair that is available in various solid woods with or without an upholstered seat. The goal of the trio when designing OS1 was to create a chair that is beautiful as a stand-alone object, but can also be stacked if necessary.
I find that chairs are the most sophisticated design because while comfort is most fundamental, they also have to be functional, and this is where stackability is so important in my opinion. While we understand that they may not be used as a stacking chair, especially in the home environment, the benefits are very important, especially from a shipping point of view, as it allows us to minimize the property’s possible carbon footprint in an area that is often overlooked will be sent with the shipment.
– Nick Rennie
Sustainability has been considered in all phases of the design and manufacturing process. “In general, when processing and cutting raw wood to the right amount, there are offcuts of various sizes,” explains Brett. “When we walked into the workshop one day, we saw a row of thin four-meter-long sheets stacked on the wall in the corner, and ideas began to form how we could use them.” The result is the bentwood coat rack from Rakii.
Oku Space hopes this mindset will resonate, the idea that products can be made with a considered approach to creating a beautiful, functional object using high quality materials and responsible production methods.
To learn more about Oku Space’s first furniture collection, visit okuspace.com.
Photos: Victoria Zchommler
Art Direction: Natalie Turnbull