This is the first of (hopefully) a series of blog posts on interesting and successful small spaces. In a row of shops between Terenure and Harold's Cross, this cafe / deli / eatery is a re-use of an old butcher's shop. What struck me, apart from the fact that it seems permanently full, is how well the traces of previous use have been preserved and used to provide "ready-made" character. You can't reproduce authenticity - but you can use somebody else's... Rails for hanging meat, a walk-in fridge that looks like it's from the thirties, and beautiful old tiles all provide a setting for the new use. The owners seemed to know instinctively what to leave alone. This includes the old facade, which makes for an incredibly bright and glare-free interior. Many old shops are being re-used for new purposes, but few so sensitively preserve the legacy of old-fashioned commerce they inherit. And the food is great!

Mayfield Collage copy.jpg

Fridge Door.jpg

Old Tiles.jpg

Menu Board.jpg

Butchers Rails.jpg

Hard at Work.jpg

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small spaces is a one-man architectural practice dedicated to helping people find the best way to add space to their home, or to make the most of what they’ve got. You can find out more here.