If there’s something truly exciting about fashion brands — and some may disagree, saying that fashion shows or collections themselves are at the top — is their stores and the retail experience they offer, meaning, how they epitomise the spirit of their brands in terms of atmosphere and in relation to spaces. It is there where their heritage, creative and artistic direction and vision of themselves come together. Creating either spaces that feel familiar to us, others opt for new universes or toy with the idea of a voyage to different eras. But whatever their approach is to the store, it is clear that these stores arouse the interest of visitors and architect
Floor area: 545 ㎡
Designer: Sò Studio
Sò Studio developed an ethereal collage of materials and juxtaposed objects for Looknow’s new Beijing store. Pursuing the concept of a ‘Newborn Island’, the studio created a series of divisions enacting the feeling of shop-within-a-shop, representing the uniqueness of every garment of the brand. With a series of circular openings and textured floors, uncanny boundaries are formed and introduce a collage of materials and colour palettes — as if shaping the temperament of every island.
In a way, visiting this store is like visiting dilapidated city ruins in which greatness cannot be undermined, as the lightning and broken columns act as a final focal point hinting at a curated retail experience.
COPERNI @Printemps, Paris
Designer: In collaboration with USM Haller
Thriving on the spirit of innovation, Coperni has been one to keep an eye on. However, the duo behind the brand Sébastien Meyer and Arnaud Vaillant not only make it to the headlines with jaw-dropping shows such as the spray-on painted dress on Bella Hadid, but also with their relationship with design, which has materialised by means of different collaborations, especially with the Swiss manufacturer of modular furniture USM Haller.
Their ongoing collaboration has fused the art of design with the art of fashion in ways that point to the evolution of lifestyle into working places; or working places into living spaces. Either way, Coperni’s DNA of innovation and USM’s passion for connectivity have conjured the future of modular homes showing at Salone del Mobile in 2018 and 2019. But the study of different configurations and aesthetics has made this collaboration one to stand the passage of time with Coperni’s new store located at the department store Printemps in Paris. The store reinvents the Parisian chic with an ultra-minimalistic look composed of white-coated metal and silver tubing as per USM’s aesthetics, a great compliment to the 90 minimalist and chic Coperni garments.
ACNE STUDIOS @SKP, Chengdu
Floor area: 338 ㎡
Located in the submerged SKP department store, Acne Studios’ store in Chengdu has a discrete sandstone exterior marked by a red LED sign displaying the brand’s logo, and in the interior, grey sandstone walls contrast against sculptural tie-dye furniture in earthy tan hues by British designer Max Lamb, and with that, the Swedish design studio Halleroed toys with the idea of going back to 80’s and 90’s and imagine the future, as Halleroed founder Christian Halleroed tells Dezeen in an interview.
And this idea is realised with inclined stone-clad walls, futuristic lighting and mannequins — the vision of the future — which is contrasted with Lamb’s more primitive sculpture-like furniture, creating a disembodiment of time yet, a spaceship-kind of feel. Additionally, Lamb designed four fabric-clad touchscreens held by slim poles to provide an overview of the brand’s current collection and availability.
JACQUEMUS @Galeries Lafayette Haussman, Paris
The design of the Jacquemus boutiques in London and Paris began with the idea of testing the limits of working with a single material, which corresponds to capturing the atmosphere of the south of France, where the brand is from, through the materiality of spaces. And that is how the pillows have become a staple in Jacquemus stores, as they are reminiscent of the textiles of Provence.
No need to say, that pillows point not only at the origins of Jacquemus but serve the purpose of comfort as much as objects of display. And more than feeling like entering a cushiony cloud, the store exudes a sense of craftsmanship and naturalness — qualities that are easily attributed to the brand.
Floor area: 580 ㎡
The concept of this store was to create a house for the future of Gant: a well-loved home full of comforts. But the store is not only about wood and traditional herringbone, natural light and a relaxing atmosphere. With the lead of the studio Snarkitecture, known for its modern designs, the GANT’s new location showcases modernity with terrazzo stone tiles and plaster, accentuated by warm tones and furniture made of natural materials.
The large space, distributed over three floors, houses a creative studio whose mission is to bring talent and the community together, with an agenda of panel talks, exhibitions and immersive events in the near future. In that way, the GANT store becomes a space that propels a connection between the brand and the city marked by the return to home, offering a multilayered retail experience.