"Stay true to yourselves, be confident, experiment, but most of all, let fun and joy be the guiding forces in what you do."
We are pop-up specialists, idea generators, concept creators, curators, storytellers, communicators, digital natives, networkers and make-it-happeners.
The conviction of creating culinary experiences to bring people together has been engraved in our minds ever since we started our ‘Sweet Sneak’ pop-up bakery in 2012 – and building the foundation for what Sweet Sneak Studio is striving for today
How did you get started as food designers and why, as designers, do you choose to work with food rather than something else?
We originally started out with a series of pop-up bakeries here in Copenhagen – for the fun of it, and because we all had a passion for cakes and bringing people together. From the beginning, though, we thought of Sweet Sneak as a holistic concept, including the design, the photography, and the story-telling. Sweet Sneak Studio today designs concepts that evolve along culinary experiences with a focus on events, communication strategies and visual work. We find it very fascinating that food is a natural part of our everyday lives and a very strong communicator and social determinant at the same time. Eventually, what we do and love is to use the power of food to design experiences.
What does food design mean to you?
As mentioned above, food is not mere nutrition anymore, but has become something we spend a lot of time on – the way we eat has changed, it is a lot more meaningful today and is thus more cultural and social than ever before, on a more conscious level. Our work allows us to work with the excitement and all the facets food offers. It means extracting these facets and making them visible, be it through photography or through an event concept, be it for a company or for a wedding set-up.
What’s your aim as food designers?
To make people enjoy food with all their senses. So actually, to spread joy through food. As corny as that might sound.
Your work is about something bigger than only cooking. You combine psychology, health, nature, science, aesthetic. How do you design this complexity?
The good thing is, that all the above is part of food’s very character. Food is psychologic, healthy (or unhealthy), natural, scientific, and aesthetic. Eventually, it is ‘just’ about becoming conscious about these elements, and integrating them by applying your own angle.
How do you design the experience with symbolic and aesthetic qualities of food?
It is very difficult to describe the ‘how’ with words. Weirdly enough, the question makes me think of fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent who once said: Over the years I have learned that what is important in a dress is the woman who is wearing it. The dress as a tool to elicit the greatness of the woman wearing it. Similarly, we see the symbolic and aesthetic qualities of food as tools to elicit the food experiences we are designing.
What kind of people do you attract to the workshops?
There is not necessarily a specific type of person that would attend our workshops – measured by demographic or occupational terms. However, it would usually be people that are food-savvy, open-minded and happy to experiment.
The most manifestation of designers’ new fascination with food is the way they now view food stuffs as a material to experiment with. What do you think about to design food as we design materials?
Here I would like to return to the thought of food not being mere nutrition any longer. A whole new world has opened up as there is now an interest in and focus on all the different socio-cultural elements of food. Picking up the fashion analogy again: as much as the character of the material determines the character of the piece of clothing, the character of the food would determine the food experience.
Food design is intended to compliment the food physically and emotionally, sensorialy and subliminally. How do you focus on these directions?
We would always take departure in a holistic approach – looking at the different layers independently, but eventually combining them again to create a consistent food experience.
Food preparation has become more tactile. What do you think about the importance to set the table to connect people?
In German there is a saying: ‘Das Auge isst mit’. Literally translated, it means ‘the eye is eating, too’, hinting towards food tasting even better if also visually appealing. Extending the thought, we think that the atmosphere – including the surroundings, the setting, the vibe and the aesthetics, plays an important role in enriching the food experience itself.
Philippe Starck quotes: "For the organic food, the less it's designed, the better it is”. Are you interested in the return to unprocessed and organic food design?
If designed means artificial, then we would probably agree. We believe that food design and experiences are a lot stronger the more authentic and natural they are.
Contemporary designers seem to be more interested in learning from the past and re-evaluating lost knowledge about food. Is the past the future?
Not necessarily and exclusively – there are a lot of innovative ideas in the food scene that play with new angles. However, most innovation is bases on already existing knowledge putting it into a new perspective or adding novel layers to it. So in one way, the answer is yes.
Food design is more happily placed within the arts sphere. How do you experiment this connection?
Sweet Sneak Studio’s projects would span from designing cake-set ups for weddings to food photography, branding and even creative food consulting, the food experience being the core. So there can be a very artistic touch to our work, depending on the project.
What are you currently fascinated by?
A tasteful piece of cheesecake – always a winner. On a less cakey level: Nature and art. Two components that never disappoint in surprising you with inspiration you did not see coming.
What’s the best advice you have heard?
It’s getting philosophical! As life advice tends to sound a little cheesy, let’s stay within the Sweet Sneak Studio universe: Stay true to yourselves, be confident, experiment, but most of all, let fun and joy be the guiding forces in what you do.
What would you say is your strongest skill?
Passion and team work. Passionate team work.
What type of project do you enjoy working on the most and why?
Generally each project that results in a smiling and thankful client. Sweet Sneak Studio allows us to combine all the things we like to do most. Of course, it is especially thrilling if a project turns out differently than expected, but more beautiful, too.
What is your motto?
We do not have a general motto. We probably have a new one every day. Ultimately, to spread happiness.
Informativa ai sensi dell’art. 13 D.LGS. 30 giugno 2003 n.196
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