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    Axel Arigato rejects “McDonald's approach” to interiors with Berlin flagship store

    Travertine displays that double as DJ podiums feature alongside glistening butter-yellow columns in Axel Arigato’s Berlin outpost, which the streetwear label has designed together with longtime collaborator Halleroed.

    The brand’s flagship boutique is set in the central Scheunenviertel neighbourhood, across the ground floor of a prefabricated concrete Plattenbau building typical of post-war East Germany.
    Axel Arigato has opened a flagship store in BerlinStockholm design studio Halleroed was tasked with conceiving the interior scheme for the space, reviving some of the key visual themes the practice has established across all of Axel Arigato’s other stores.
    Rather than simply copy-and-pasting these elements, Halleroed mixed and matched them to create something new.
    Travertine was used to cover the floors and form chunky shelvesThis is illustrated in the store’s pale yellow columns, which effectively merge the glossy lacquered-metal surfaces seen in the London boutique with a muted version of the distinctive yellow accents that were used in the pop-up Stockholm shop.

    “We don’t have a McDonald’s approach where each store looks the same,” explained Axel Arigato’s creative director Max Svärdh.
    “We treat them as contemporary galleries and focus less on the transactional element, whilst staying true to our blueprint that keeps coming back in new shapes and materials.”
    Yellow-lacquered metal was used to envelop columns and form clothes railsRoman travertine, which features heavily across the brand’s Paris boutique, was used to cover the entire expanse of the floor, as well as forming chunky shelves and the plinths that encircle the interior columns.
    Rendered in various shapes, sizes and textures, these sculptural plinths can be used to display different trainers or act as counters and curved seating nooks when Axel Arigato is hosting an event in the store, which can comfortably accommodate up to 250 people.
    “The podiums – and in a way all the surfaces – are multipurpose in that we use them for displaying the weekly rotation of product drops, DJ decks at parties or pop-up merchandise when we hand over the space to other creatives,” Svärdh told Dezeen.

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    The raw natural texture of the travertine is contrasted against the lacquered metal, which was used to envelop the pillars and form a series of clothing rails curved around the perimeter of the room.
    “The glossy finish lends a highly visual element to our spaces and creates a nice contrast to the very organic materials and softer characters of the stone and the store’s generally muted character,” Svärdh explained.
    Mirrored pillars bookend a huge LED screenTogether with the floor-to-ceiling mirrors flanking a huge LED display, the shiny metal surfaces also help to reflect the illumination that is provided by the rows of strip lights running all the way across the ceiling.
    The flagship is Axel Arigato’s second bricks-and-mortar store in Germany, following the opening of its Munich outpost last November.
    Axel Arigato joins Hay, Acne Studios and a growing number of international brands that have moved into the Scheunenviertel in recent years. The area is rapidly being expanded into an alternative shopping destination tucked away behind the more touristy destinations of Berlin’s central Alexander Platz.
    Other businesses in the Scheunenviertel neighbourhood include Sofi – a bakery set in the courtyard of a restored brick factory.

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    Perron-Roettinger clads Kim Kardashian SKKN pop-up store in raw plaster and cement

    Design studio Perron-Roettinger has created a pop-up shop for Kim Kardashian’s skincare and homeware brand SKKN in Los Angeles that showcases its products in a physical space for the first time.

    The minimalist pop-up store, which is located inside Los Angeles shopping mall Westfield Century City, was designed using a limited material palette in a nod to the brand’s pared-back design.
    Perron-Roettinger has created a pop-up shop for Skkn”The SKKN [store] is about raw materials – bold, big blocks of stacked raw material – which is inspired from an inactive quarry that I visited once,” Perron-Roettinger cofounder Willo Perron told Dezeen.
    “All different plaster and cement finishes echo the emphasis on the raw natural materials.”
    The walls and counters are made from concrete and plasterIn the 1,330-square-foot (123 square-metre) space, homeware and skincare products are presented within curved wall alcoves or on top of sculptural counters made from grey concrete and plaster. The room is framed by two large portrait photos of reality television star Kardashian.

    “Just in time for the holiday season, the pop-up will offer customers a luxurious in-person shopping experience with the entire SKKN By Kim collection – from skincare to home decor,” said the brand.
    Skincare items are displayed in alcovesThe use of raw materials references Perron’s partner Brian Roettinger’s packaging for SKKN products, as well as Kardashian’s recently launched concrete homeware collection called Home Accessories Collection.
    All the materials come in varying shades of Kardashian’s signature beige and grey colour palette, which she has used in her home and her shapewear collections.

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    According to Perron, the brand’s packaging and the store interior are united in their reliance on simple shapes and raw materials.
    “The throughline idea is materials untouched, most primary and elemental state,” he explained. “Simple geometry is important to add a recognizable component to both the space and the packaging.”
    Perron–Roettinger was also responsible for SKKN’s creative direction, brand identity and art direction.
    The store mirrors the brand’s minimalist packagingThe SKKN pop-up shop is open until the end of the year in Westfield Century City, Los Angeles.
    The longtime collaboration between designer Willo Perron and Kim Kardashian has seen Perron design other pop-up stores for the American reality star’s brands.
    For Kardashian’s shapewear company Skims, Perron created a beige coloured pop-up shop in Paris with chunky display units and partitions.
    Los-Angeles based Perron-Roettinger has also completed other pop-up shops for brands including Stüssy.
    The photography is by Gray Hamner.

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    Nina + Co brings biomaterials into MONC eyewear store in London

    Cornstarch-foam shelves meet mycelium display plinths in this London store that Nina + Co has designed for bioplastic eyewear brand MONC.

    Nestled among a parade of high-end shops in Marylebone, MONC sells glasses made from bio-acetate – an acetate produced completely without fossil fuels – which are packaged using recycled leather cases and compostable cornstarch foam.
    The first MONC eyewear location sits along a row of shops in MaryleboneWhen local studio Nina + Co was brought in to design MONC’s debut store, the team was keen to incorporate biomaterials throughout the interior, while also taking the brand’s short-term lease of the retail unit into account.
    “Circularity was key,” said the studio. “Almost everything we brought into that building was entirely bio-based or recycled.”
    “The furniture is expertly built to last but can be disassembled for re-use, recycling or return to the earth as nourishment.”

    The store features a ceiling installation made from cornstarch foamUpon entering the store, visitors find themselves under an undulating ceiling installation crafted from corrugated panels of cornstarch foam.
    Thicker blocks of the material were used to create rows of squishy-looking shelves, which can be used for packaging or simply dissolved in water when they eventually start to show signs of wear and tear.
    The foam was also used to form small shelvesDisplay plinths made out of mycelium – the vegetative part of a fungus – were dotted across the store to showcase different eyewear models.
    In between the shelves, a couple of long mirrors are balanced on hunks of concrete that were salvaged from roadworks nearby.
    A recycled PET island sits at the centre of the store beside mycelium display plinthsThe craggy concrete was chosen as a subtle nod to the rugged Dolomite mountains, which can be seen from the Italian town where all MONC eyewear is produced.
    Nina + Co worked closely alongside Welsh manufacturers Smile Plastics and London joiner EJ Ryder to design the store’s recycled PET island and bench seat, which are an apricot-orange hue.

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    As both furniture pieces were joined with mechanical bolts rather than glues, they can easily be taken apart, flat packed and transported to a different MONC store for reuse.
    Walls throughout the interior were finished with VOC-free clay paint while the unit’s existing floor was covered with a water-based sealant.
    The plastic was also used to form a bench seat”Previous tenants had ripped up their floor to leave a plywood subfloor, with markings of the adhesive still evident and some paint bucket outlines,” the studio explained.
    “After a test patch, we were convinced that a simple water-based sealant would give it a beautiful depth and sheen with the industrial feel of concrete [while being] kinder to the planet and the budget.”
    Walls were washed with a calming clay paintMONC is one of five projects shortlisted in the small retail interior category of this year’s Dezeen Awards.
    It’s going head-to-head with the Durat showroom by Linda Bergroth, which is decked out in an unusual mix of colours, and Aesop’s Yorkville store by Odami with its oxblood-red balusters.
    The photography is by Handover.

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    AIA Estúdio designs cave-like interior for clothing store in Rio de Janeiro

    Organic shapes and stone-like surfaces characterise the interior of the Haight clothing store in Rio de Janeiro, which was designed by interior and landscaping design practice AIA Estúdio.

    A large pillar with a rough, textured surface dominates the 110-square-metre shop interior, expanding as it ascends before merging into the ceiling to create a cave-like space.
    A pillar transforms into a cave-like structure”Its height starts small and in the back part it ends higher in a nonlinear form, just like a cave,” AIA Estúdio founder Alice Tepedino told Dezeen.
    “The infinite and diverse processes of erosion that form cliffs, caves, stalactites, sands, stones and the movements of water with its tracks and shapes led to our creative process being part of the concept developed for the store’s spatiality.”
    Stone slabs around the pillar are used to display objectsRather than being a cumbersome obstacle, the pillar helps organise the shop’s circulation and movement of shoppers, according to the studio.

    “It is from the occupation around the pillar that the space fluidity is achieved. This disposition is enhanced by curved lines that define the path inside the store,” said Tepedino.
    Curved stone plates balance on rocksSlabs of soapstone and Bahia beige marble encircle the pillar at different heights and are propped up by Bahia beige marble rocks that create a display surface and a place for shoppers to sit.
    On the perimeter walls, niches with stainless steel bases display Haight’s clothing on brushed-brass rails.

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    The metallic surfaces and straight edges of the niches contrast with the organic shapes and materials in the centre of the shop, which is located in the Shopping Leblon retail centre.
    Tepedino used indirect lighting in the niches to illuminate the space, mimicking cracks in cave walls where sunlight can seep through.
    Clothing is displayed on brushed-brass rails”The exhibition interspace was thought of as a cut in the walls, an operation emphasised by the transition of materiality,” said Tepedino.
    “Inside, there are exhibition racks in brushed brass, which, with their more solar aspect, contribute to subtly warming up the store’s ambience, together with the soapstone and its greyer tone.”
    The bottoms of wall niches are lined with steelTepedino’s design is the first of Haight’s stores to be located inside a shopping centre, which prompted the designer to approach the project in a different way.
    The entrance to the shop is a large opening that provides open access from the shopping centre to the nature-inspired shop interior.
    It is the first Haight store to be located in a mall”The design adopted a contrasting strategy between the store and mall, which, despite the rigid and controlled environment, offers opportunities such as the possibility of not having a door,” said Tepedino.
    “The brand’s conceptual basis is related to natural landscapes but when you are inside the mall, you find a language that is the opposite of Haight’s conceptual basis, with artificial elements and cold materiality.”
    Natural materials and surfaces were used throughout the shop interior”Once you’re inside the store you get disconnected from the artificial atmosphere of the rest of the building,” Tepedino continued.
    The project has been shortlisted in the small retail interiors category of Dezeen Awards 2022, alongside a surfaces showroom in Helsinki with colourful terrazzo-like walls and an oxblood red shop interior with walls decorated with Victorian-style balusters.
    The photography is by Maira Acayaba.

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    ASA Studio Albanese references mid-century offices for Thom Browne store in San Francisco

    American fashion label Thom Browne has opened its first retail location in San Francisco, designed by ASA Studio Albanese to feature dramatic marble against white slatted blinds.

    The flagship store is situated at 432 Jackson Street in the historic Yeon Building, which dates back to 1855, in the heart of the city’s luxury shopping district.
    Thom Browne’s San Francisco store pairs decorative marble walls with white slatted blindsIts interior is the latest collaboration between Thom Browne’s eponymous founder and architect Flavio Albanese of Italy-based ASA Studio Albanese, who has designed over a dozen stores for the brand since 2017.
    Like its counterparts around the world, the 1,250-square-foot (116-square-metre) space is outfitted to look like a Mad Men-era workplace.
    A selection of mid-century furniture pieces was curated for the spaceThis is achieved by pairing highly decorative marble surfaces with strips of white slatted blinds and tube lighting.

    “Behind Thom Browne’s signature slat blind-covered windows is a minimalist mid-century style office with rows of fluorescent tube lighting, polished with white Calcutta and Carrara marble floors, and banker grey Bardiglio and Carrara marble walls,” said the Thom Browne team.
    The store’s desaturated colour palette is reflective of the brand’s clothingAmong the furniture pieces curated to embellish the theme are a glass-topped desk placed in the centre of the room at one end and chairs that form a small seating area at the other.
    “Thom continues to outfit this space with mid-century furniture by American and French designers — including seating and lamps by Jacques Adnet, a desk by TH Robsjohn-Gibbings, office chairs by Knoll, benches by McCobb, coffee tables by Mathieu Mategot, and display etagere’s by Maison Jansen,” the team said.
    Accessories are displayed on minimalist shelving unitsThe largely desaturated colour palette – reflective of the brand’s clothing – is interrupted by brass accessories and details on the furniture, as well as a few camel-toned garments.
    A black band wraps around the rooms at floor level, separating the grey marble on the walls from the lighter toned stone underfoot.

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    Clothes are presented on metal rails mounted on wheels, while bags, shoes, eyewear and fragrances are displayed on minimalist freestanding shelves.
    The fitting rooms are hidden behind doors covered in the same material as the walls so that they blend in seamlessly when closed.
    The store is located in the historic Yeon Building on Jackson SquareThom Browne founded his label in 2001 with five suits in a small by-appointment shop in New York City’s West Village, and eventually expanded to include ready-to-wear and accessories lines for both men and women.
    Browne’s Autumn Winter 2022 collection was an ode to toys and featured sculptural tailoring, presented at New York Fashion Week in front of an audience of 500 teddy bears.
    The photography is courtesy of Thom Browne.

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    Reflecting pool centres XC273 fashion boutique in former Shanghai towel factory

    Chinese studio Dongqi Design has turned a disused factory in Shanghai into a multi-brand fashion and lifestyle store, adding glossy marble and metal surfaces to offset its exposed concrete shell.

    Set across three floors, the XC273 retail space houses designer showrooms and pop-ups alongside a small cafe, as well as providing spaces for temporary exhibitions and events.
    Dongqi Design has turned a former factory into a fashion boutiqueFormerly a state-owned towel factory, the building had already been changed several times before the latest round of renovations.
    Dongqi Design strived to preserve and emphasise these different layers of history, which are contrasted against shiny new finishes to create a kind of “nostalgic futurism”.
    “All the differences of the space were kept as part of the building’s history so that people walking in could feel that the boundaries between the past and the present are blurred, as if they had walked into a timeless space,” the studio explained.

    The XC273 store houses a cafe alongside designer showrooms and pop-upsThe building is organised around three voids, which now form the basis of the store’s circulation routes.
    The largest of these voids consists of a double-height space at the core of the building, where Dongqi Design added a small reflecting pool surrounded by a collonade.
    Glossy surfaces are contrasted against the building’s raw concrete shellThe collonade’s raw concrete columns are left exposed where they face the pond, while their other three sides are wrapped with either marble, wood or metal.
    This approach is replicated across the store’s display fixtures to create a sense of spatial continuity. It can also be seen on the first floor, where new paving was added to enhance the existing geometric flooring.

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    A sound tunnel that provides visitors with an experimental music experience was placed near the cafe on the ground floor.
    The second floor is accessed via a metal staircase, which is suspended above the reflecting pool and winds its way up through a small hole in the ceiling.
    A reflecting pool was installed at the core of the building”The key element connecting all the spaces is the stairs,” the studio explained.
    “The stairs are designed in their purest metallic form, further enhanced by the details of the balustrade where the fence becomes a simple element sliding into the structural beam at the bottom while having a profile on the top to allow visitors to grab the handrail comfortably.”
    Concrete paving was added to complement the geometric flooring on the first floorOn the second floor, Dongqi Design selected a bright white finish to emphasise the old wooden structure of the building’s pitched roof. A series of square windows let light into the space and offer views out across the city and toward the sky.
    To balance out the otherwise all-white interior, the VIP room is finished in a darker palette. During spring and summer, these darker shades also contrast with the colour of the trees outside.
    Dongqi Design gave the second floor a bright white finishXC273 has been shortlisted in the large retail interior category of this year’s Dezeen Awards.
    Other projects in the running include a second-hand bookshop in Shanghai that uses supermarket-style crates to display its wares and a reusable sales showroom with fabric walls.
    The photography is by Raitt Liu.

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    Fabric arches divide Jonathan Simkhai store in SoHo by Aruliden

    Design agency Aruliden has created a retail space for fashion brand Jonathan Simkhai in New York City, translating cut-out shapes from its clothing into architectural partitions and furniture.

    For New York-based womenswear brand Jonathan Simkhai, Aruliden designed a temporary installation within the space on Mercer Street in SoHo – a prime shopping area in Lower Manhattan.
    A series of metal structures wrapped in translucent fabric divide the Jonathan Simkhai storeThe geometric shapes and signature cut-outs of the brand’s clothing were translated into a variety of spatial interventions and furniture pieces, creating a store in which the brand can present new collections and host events.
    “Translating Simkhai’s identity into a vision for a spatial environment required a clear and strategic idea that was not just shoppable, but also memorable and visually iconic,” said Aruliden’s senior director of industrial design Erik Kreider.
    “We wanted visitors to be fully immersed in this world, but at the end of the day it was also important that we celebrated and showcased the products the right way.”

    The fabric partitions are installed to fit around existing architectural elementsTowards the front of the building, a double-height space is painted entirely white and further brightened by the glass facade.
    This long, narrow room is divided by a series of tall structures, comprising translucent fabric stretched over metal frames.
    Mannequins flank a staircase that leads to the store’s lower levelFitted around existing architectural elements, the temporary walls wrapped in white, peach and pink fabric are punctured with archways that curve asymmetrically at the top, forming a passage from one end of the store to the other.
    Shoppers are led through the archways and down a flight of stairs, flanked by mannequins positioned on larger steps along one side.
    Units of a flexible display system are shaped similarly to the arched openings in the partitionsOn the lower level, where the ceiling height is considerably lower, podiums for displaying products and decorative accessories are shaped similarly to the archway cut-outs.
    At various sizes and heights, these beige-toned units form a flexible display system that can be moved around when needed.

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    “Clothing and products break the cadence of the fabric arches,” said Kreider.
    “Together with the graphic cutouts, this creates a natural flow to the back area where more products, seating and changing rooms are located,
    The archways, furniture and podiums are based on the cut-out shapes of Jonathan Simkhai’s clothingThroughout the store, garments are presented on identical sets of hangers along minimal white rails.
    The minimalist interior is also enlivened by simple floral displays, presented in a variety of crafted vases.
    The minimalist interior is enlivened with simple floral decorationsAruliden, which was founded in 2006 by Rinat Aruh and Johan Liden, is headquartered in New York City with offices in San Francisco and Amsterdam.
    The agency has several products shortlisted for this year’s Dezeen Awards, including the Whoop 4.0 fitness wearable and the Series One Desk 27 video-conferencing device. It has also designed a series of mirrored structures to be built in a forest in Ontario, Canada.
    The photography is by Sharon Radisch.

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    Offhand Practice designs second-hand bookshop in Shanghai to mimic greengrocer

    Used books are displayed in supermarket-style crates at the Deja Vu Recycle Store in Shanghai, which local studio Offhand Practice has designed to counter the “shabby” image associated with second-hand shops.

    The store, which also carries pre-owned fashion, is located on the first and second floor of a three-storey building on Shanghai’s buzzy Anfu Road.
    The Deja Vu Recycle Store is located in Shanghai’s Anfu RoadOn the interior, Chinese architecture studio Offhand Practice hoped to create a relaxed shopping environment despite the large number of goods on offer, which includes more than 2,000 pieces of clothing.
    With this aim, the studio set out to mimic the experience of going to a greengrocer by displaying clothes and books on shelves typically used to hold fruits and vegetables, while giving all products equal prominence regardless of price.
    A long gallery-like corridor leads to the staircase for the first floor”Picking up books in the way of picking up vegetables and fruits gives a feeling of enriching the spiritual basket,” Offhand Practice explained.

    On the ground floor, the studio recessed the building’s entrance and framed it in cream-coloured mosaic tiles to create a small shelter while making the towering facade feel more welcoming.
    Second-hand books are displayed in supermarket-style cratesOne of the main challenges for the studio was to encourage passersby to walk through the building’s ground floor – consisting of a long corridor bookended with space for mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) equipment– and climb the stairs to reach the Deja Vu Recycle Store.
    This was achieved by turning the corridor into a kind of gallery, showcasing the process of refurbishing second-hand goods.
    “Taking advantage of the narrowness, we identified spatial depth through layers of opening,” the studio explained.

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    Books are displayed on the building’s first floor and clothing on the second. Both levels have an open-plan layout with circulation routes defined by shelving and clothes rails.
    Mosaic tiles made from stone off-cuts were used to form decorative wainscoting in the same creamy beige colour as the facade, which channels 1970s Shanghai interiors.
    Contrasting green tiles were used to frame the generous window openings revealed during the building’s renovation, and to form integrated window seats.
    Green mosaic tiles were used to frame the building’s windowsNatural pine was used to form the cashier counter, shelves and book crates to add a sense of warmth to the interior.
    Offhand Practice said it designed the store to break with negative preconceptions around second-hand stores being “dull, disorganised and piled with shabby objects”.
    “Deja Vu Recycle Store breaks the stereotypical image of a second-hand store and erases the ritualistic impression of a traditional bookstore full of full-height bookshelves,” the studio said.
    The tiles were also used to emphasise arches and other architectural detailsThe store was recently been shortlisted for large retail interior of the year at the 2022 Dezeen Awards.
    Other projects in the running include a surrealist pop-up shop designed by Random Studio for fashion brand Jacquemus and a concept store that Schemata Architects has created for an outdoor brand in South Korea.
    The photography is by Hu Yanyun.

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