Camper Together Part 1: Jamie Hayon, Tokyo

Camper is a brand that I am constantly talking about, for my love of its continued creativity in its store design. I love the fact that brand principles are consistent in each store but that there is a new twist in each, each store has its own memorable identity. It’s not about standard roll-out.

Camper Together is a Model of Collaboration as the brand puts it. Their take on it is as follows; ”Camper Together is a model of collaboration between Camper and leading designers to create exclusive products and outstanding stores. Together responds to a new international reality that requires the capacity to integrate through design, different cultures and creative know-how into a single project together with and organization capable of communicating and distributing unique initiatives to a select global marketplace.”

The two stand out collaborations for me are with Spanish artist and designer, Jamie Hayon. His main creative studio in Valencia is where he develops his unique style focusing on blurring the lines between art, decoration and design bringing back a renaissance in finely-crafted, intricate objects within the context of contemporary design culture: creating furniture, product, interiors, sculptures and art Installations.

The first of a two part feature with Camper that I want to look at is the store he designed in Tokyo. It is inspired by classic Circus elements. It is straight out of a fictional film like Willy Wonka where intrigue is created by experimentation with scale, the use of fun items such as candy shaped door handles and curves to every wall and, table and surface.

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Damir Doma, Paris, by March Studio

I recently stumbled upon this beautifully designed store by Melbourne based March Studio for Damir Doma in Paris. The brief was to follow a theme of multi layered ‘rough and refined’ as well as ‘rawness and purity’ which was the inspiration for Doma’s  fashion design at the time. Doma commissioned March Studio to design the boutique store after visiting the Paris store they designed for Aesop that made them internationally recognisable.

An old and new contrast soon fell in to place meeting the criteria set out by Doma and allowing for the site to retain its layers of history. Doma wanted customers to feel like they were in his Parisian apartment. The staircase is a focal point for the store, March Studio used marble in its purest form, slabs stacked on top of one another, adding to the multilayered feel of the store. Cleverly merchandised on each tread of the wide portion of staircase and framed with a sheet of blackened steel it certainly adds plenty of drama to the space whilst contrasting sharply against the remaining natural materials and colour palette. Continue Reading

Les Terrasses du Port, Marseille

Back in 2009 Hammerson, Global Asset Owners/Managers, acquired Les Terrasses du Port, Marseille. At the time it was billed as one of the largest shopping centre developments anticipated in France. The 52,000 m² centre provides 150 stores, 2,850 car parking spaces and a 260 metre-wide restaurant terrace overlooking the sea…..and it looks amazing! The vision for it now in 2012 is breathtaking.

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Burberry Pacific Place, Hong Kong

Burberry have continued on from the Burberry Live flagship store at London Regent Street with a new store in Hong Kong at a mall i love and blogged about some time ago, Pacific Place. The store design follows the same Live concept, but the photos hint that the fixtures and furnishings are a lighter more contemporary retail orientated position than the refined, classical premium appearance in Regent St.

In store at Pacific Place there seems to be less indication of the multi channel influence like in Regent Street, multimedia screens are replaced with a denser product offer, particularly on perimeter fixtures. The outside of the store however features light and potentially movement (it should move if it doesn’t!), lots of it in fact. The whole facade over two floors of the mall is illuminated in the famous Burberry pattern, in blue, reminding me slightly of a somewhat garish Victoria’s Secret shop front concept seen recently at Westfield Stratford in London.

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Bounce London, The Home of Ping Pong

Bounce London is the first site of many promised by one of the founders of All Star Lanes, a retro/boutique bowling alley in Brick Lane. The site in Holborn is verified as being the exact location where the game of ping pong was first created in 1901.

The inside is everything you would expect of a trendy East London venue, it is fantastically themed and the place and its staff know that it is in fashion even only a couple of months after opening. The main area is split between a saloon style bar with theatrical red curtain and a restaurant on an upper level, all beneath a white sprayed warehouse ceiling.

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Agency Feature Part 2: The Uncarved Block – The Galeries Victoria Food Court

The second piece of work the Uncarved Block had shortlisted in the 2012 Australian Interior Design Awards, was another food court. This time in The Galeries Victoria shopping centre. The previous food court was looking tired, located below ground level in Sydney’s CBD. Philip Chia came up with a new direction for the food court, one that would see it offer a new boutique style dining experience.

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Agency Feature Part 1: The Uncarved Block – Melbourne Central Food Court

I have lost count of the amount of times I have used the above image as inspiration over the last 6 months for retail projects focusing on graphic language and tone of voice. I recently stumbled upon this article on Architecture.AU and found that the agency responsible for the project is The Uncarved Block. A relatively young agency, founded in 2010 by Philip Chia. The Uncarved Block’s holding page gives little away, other than a strong, contemporary impression that leaves the visitor intrigued to see more!

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After a few weeks break from blogging that was filled with business trips to Germany, Spain and France I am playing catch up. Here is a summary of some of the great things I have seen online over the last month. Ranging from showrooms and book stores, to hotels and offices. Not to mention a new hotel in Marseille that looks like a take on Shoreditch House by Philippe Starck.

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Mackintosh flagship store, Tokyo

More Wonderwall, back in Japan this time with the opening of Mackintosh. Classic British fashion and lifestyle is the inspiration for the design of this space. The stylish interior is comprised of large scale parquet floor against white fielded panels on walls and white ceilings with chunky grid panel mouldings and covings.

Traditional furniture in the form of chesterfield sofas and polished timber tables and desks sit alongside gold plated steel frame showcases that product hangs in. A low lit corridor with timber clad walls holding minimally hung product, again on gold rails, overlooks a beautiful sweeping staircase in white, with blue carpet and black ironmongery balustrade.

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Does/is Retail Design Need to change?

Retail design creativity has to be driven by new innovative technological thinking. I’ve recently been considering the retail design situation in the high street and many recurring shopping centres. It’s becoming too static. Samey. New shopping centres like Westfield are regurgitating the same look and feel, and the same shopfits. Flagship has become roll out, or visa versa.

We work on Retail design and delivery in my agency, approving new shop designs in shopping centres all over the country. A common problem is that landlords are desperate to get big brands in to shopping centres and whilst they want the best look for their malls in terms of shop design, they do not want to rock the boat so much by demanding more elaborate, show stopping designs that results in tenants deciding to opt out. But as brand guardians, is of course our desire to see thought provoking or jaw dropping design.

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