As Japan’s many small manufacturers seek new ways to attract business, there is one approach that should interest design-conscious consumers: the creation of original factory goods.

For business-to-business manufacturers, establishing their own product lines doesn’t just offer interesting and unusual items for the public. It’s also a branding exercise — a way to showcase machinery skills in an attractive form — as well as an opportunity to experiment and develop production techniques. This month, On: Design looks at two industrial manufacturers who have launched their own design-led contemporary homeware products.

All in the process