Luke Pedersen and James Lennard debuted the first Field Office on Barrack Street in Cape Town. “James and I have always wanted an interesting showroom for our furniture and are both passionate about coffee so it was a natural fit for us,” says Pedersen.
Pedersen and Lennard crafted everything in the space, from the furniture to the bar counter to the cake stands and food boards. "The concept is a meeting place of well-designed furniture and good artisan coffee," Pedersen says. "It's an inspiring space and gives people a chance to get some work done outside of their usual office or home. We offer free WiFi, which we think should be a standard wherever you go by now and serve good coffee."
Pedersen + Lennard built a custom display wall to show their wares, like the Bucket stools shown here. The studio selected the east city area for their shop for. "It was a forgotten area and many people told us it was a crazy idea to open shop there but we liked the feeling of it and saw that there was some new life coming to the area," Pedersen says. "Our cafe has helped to draw creatives back to the area and given people an alternative to some of the more popular parts of the Central Business District which are often very busy with tourists. The shop [at 37 Barrck Street] is not easy to find which we quite like."
Field Office has drawn a diverse crowd. "A lot of people come and work there for a few hours, such as illustrators and graphic designers," Pedersen says. "Corporates have their meetings and lunches there. Coffee fanatics come try our new inventions. Students use it as a meeting place for group projects."
When the cafe first opened, coffee was served in vintage cups. "We hunted them down in markets but sadly they didn't withstand the daily use of a coffee shop so we let people take them home and now have some refined white china," Pedersen says.
In 2012, Pedersen + Lennard opened a second Field Office in Cape Town's Woodstock Exchange, a new development, and relocated their factory to there as well. "The idea for the second shop is the same [as the first] and aims to meet the same needs in a new area," Pedersen says. "It's also convenient for James and I to hold our meetings etc right here next to our own office. We have a weekly band playing after work on Fridays and regular exhibitions. Woodstock has become a great hub of creative enterprise, much like what has been happening in centers all over the world."
Here's the cafe's front at 66 Albert Road in Woodstock. The studio's Fairlegs tables and benches outfit the space.