Suleïma Ben Achour and Antoine Lallement of Studio Classico run a two-person, two-city architecture firm: she’s in Paris, he’s in Marseille. They began collaborating as students at École Nationale d’Architecture de Paris la Villette, and, since opening their office in 2020, have been producing thoughtful, spirited work: see, for instance, Order and Pattern in a Spirited Apartment Remodel and A Room of One’s Own: An Ensuite Retreat. Those two projects are in Paris; today, we’re following the duo to Marseille, where they were asked to give a frilly cupcake café a new look for its tenth anniversary.
The owner of Minoofi Bakery spent time living in the States and describes her establishment as “homemade American with a French twist.” Suleïma and Antoine’s mandate was to telegraph Minoofi’s bilingual focus while making the setting feel “more grown up”—and working within the existing very tight layout.
In response, the architects zeroed in on three of the bakery’s guiding principles: “timeless, warm, and homemade.” As research, they “looked at who in America used to make beautiful things in natural materials,” which is how the work of the Shakers became their point of reference. “We appreciate the Shaker combination of harmony and modernity, and the use of wood,” says Antoine. We also like the functional aspect—this is a bakery that’s a workspace.” And like the bagels, pecan pie, and red velvet cake on offer, the new fittings are lovely translations, all designed by Suleïma and Antoine and executed by friends of theirs. We plan to study the details and interpret them for our own rooms.
Photography by Marvin Leuvrey, courtesy of Studio Classico (@studio_classico).
The push broom is from Marseille institution Maison Emperereur, France’s Oldest and Most Esteemed Hardware Store. An important small detail: the wooden vent in the counter was sourced from David Kotora.
Adds Antoine: “For us the nail is a kind of metaphor of arts and crafts culture, and also links to the pastries which are handmade.”
More Shaker design:
And here’s a recent Paris apartment with a Shaker-inspired home office: