ARMS is a husband and wife team composed of woodworking x designer roles that both conceptualizes and produces unique wooden household wares. Isao Aoyanagi is a self taught, first generation artisan. His wife, Yukiko, is the designer. In the city of Higashikagura, a small community in the middle of Hokkaido, ARMS has been creating original pieces in their studio for over 10 years. You can find their products sold in many parts of Japan.
Isao began his career dealing mostly with wood-based household products and furniture. He was working in sales. As he interacted with many skilled artisans in the business, he realized there weren’t many young artisans that can carry on the tradition and skills necessary to preserve what he viewed as a beautiful craft and industry. That’s when he decided to transition away from sales and become an artisan himself.
Around the same time, in Tokyo, Yukiko decided to pursue her passion in woodworking by moving to Hokkaido, where many skilled woodworking programs are held. With a background in design, Yukiko met Isao at a woodworking event and shared visions of changing the landscape of wood products by injecting modern and elegant designs with the natural beauty.
ARMS creates household products that are for everyday use. Thus, the inspirations come from everyday interactions of living away from the busy hustle of the city, yet still embody a modern feel. As a result, their designs aim to reflect what is natural, rather than the material. The careful selection of wood and color brings out the characteristic of Hokkaido living, reflecting the beautiful scenery and the seasons.