Glass Jewelry Box - News - Domus
Hiroshi Nakamura & NAP, L’Ecrin, Tokyo. Photo © Koji Fujii/Nacasa and Partners Inc.

Glass Jewelry Box

For the renovation of the Hermes specialized boutique in Tokyo L’Ecrin, Hiroshi Nakamura & NAP developed a shiny glass jewelry box coated with herringbone motif called Chevron.



Hiroshi Nakamura & NAP completed the renovation for a Hermes specialized boutique called L’Ecrin (that means “jewelry box” in French) in Nishi-Azabu, Tokyo.

The client requested the store to be visually open to the street while protecting the customer’s privacy. Given the client’s request, the architects proposed a glass facade with complex patterns that is transparent and shiny like a glass jewelry box, but distorts the interior view to conceal the customer’s privacy.

However, an ordinary patterned glass lacks in its transparency while a cut glass had a cost issue. The idea was to develop a unique glass with herringbone motif called Chevron, which is used as the lining for the store’s original bags.

Hiroshi Nakamura & NAP, L’Ecrin, Tokyo. Photo © Koji Fujii/Nacasa and Partners Inc.

Hiroshi Nakamura & NAP, L’Ecrin, Nishi-Azabu, Tokyo. Photo © Koji Fujii/Nacasa and Partners Inc.

First, the pattern was made using stainless steel frames with pointy edges. Then a 12mm thick single glazed glass is set on top of the steel frames and put inside a kiln where the glass is heated to 675 degrees Celsius, a point at which the glass softens.

As the glass softens, it naturally sinks 10~13mm by gravity between the frames, leaving the same chevron pattern made by the steel frame beneath it. This soft and inflated glass gives us a sense of delight that fills the interior.

L’Ecrin, Nishi-Azabu, Tokyo
Program: shop
Architects: Hiroshi Nakamura & NAP
Completion: 2014