Commune used raw materials and authenticity when communicating a physical space for Breadblok, a gluten-free bakery committed to serving fresh and organic goods to the Los Angeles community.

  • area / size 1,020 sqft
  • Year 2020
  • Breadblok is a gluten-free bakery for everyone. We use only the finest, purest ingredients to make artisan breads and pastries that satisfy the needs of every health-conscious lifestyle. Most importantly, we do it without sacrificing taste. Everything we make is gluten-free, but you wouldn’t know it. The majority of our ingredients are 100-percent organic, and everything that comes out of our ovens is made with only the necessities, free of gums, soy, and refined sugars. As a bakery with generations of French Provencal influence, we’re dedicated to bringing you healthful indulgence of the utmost quality. People with dietary preferences love us, from gluten-free and paleo to vegan and beyond. But so does everybody else. Just the way it should be.

    At the center of Breadblok is the story of the product — gluten-free bread, born not of fads nor chemistry, but tradition. It’s the story of a French family that has been adapting recipes to accommodate allergies for generations. The story now moves to Los Angeles, where the client has set out to introduce a like minded market to her family’s baking traditions. With that in mind, we needed the design to convey quality, authenticity and a sense of place. We’ve selected materials that can be left in their raw state and will age beautifully – warm alder wood for shelves and millwork, terracotta floors, plaster walls and textured limestone counters – equal parts Southern California, and the client’s native Provence. Like the product, the materials are timeless but the details are modern. The counter will float on stone plinths and the walls will be treated with a patchwork of tonal plasters. As we developed the concept for the bakery, we were asked to translate it into a bespoke farmers market stand that would introduce the Breadblok brand to LA. For the structure, we looked to the simple wood and canvas stands that have been used in European outdoor markets for centuries. Saw horses support a long table and anchor the framework for a canopy above. We worked with Rojas Fabrication to adapt the design to the realities of LA. The structure would need to be packed in a van and assembled in 20 minutes. Efficiencies aside, we wanted to fill the stand with thoughtful handmade elements that reference craft traditions. The plaster wall treatment from our bakery concept became the inspiration for a canvas and linen patchwork tablecloth by Adam Pogue. And for displaying the loaves, Dax Savage made handwoven rope baskets – a technique passed down from his mother.

    The Charlier family aren’t newcomers to the gluten-free lifestyle: they have been eating and preparing food entirely gluten-free for three generations. It began on the family’s farm in Provence, France, where dedication to an organic and sustainable lifestyle has been second nature for decades. Refusing to settle for subpar breads, the family was inspired to create their own using few, wholesome ingredients. Breadblok takes baked goods back to basics, with a menu of items as nutritious as they are delicious. We’ll change the way you think of this ancient staple, with gluten-free goods that taste just like the bread and pastries you’ve been missing.

    Design: Commune
    Photography: Laure Joliet