After spending a rather extravagant 6 weeks on a global snoop for inspiring retail experiences I must say at the end of it I returned home foot sore and sadly underwhelmed. It was tough to find something new out there. I have decided that future explorations will have to be to emerging markets. The use of technology was on my eye-spy agenda. Where it was used for Christmas decorations I gave it the big thumbs down (Barney's Electric Holiday ... a clever concept but not a good in store experience in my opinion ... it just didn't feel like Christmas). Happily the Lord and Taylor department store on 5th Ave used technology to provide a new shoe shopping experience for me. Australian department stores still have floor staff who have to go out the back to check if the shoe is in stock in the required size. It's a slow and lousy experience. Lord and Taylor have floor staff with hand held devices, they take your name and then scan any shoe you like. They can tell you immediately if they have stock in your size. If they do, and you want to try it on, a customer support person pulls it from the back of house and within minutes it has arrived on the floor without the sales person leaving your sight. Now if only they had more size 11.5's in stock ... sadly I left empty handed.
Lusting over a Louboutin and a Choo or Two
Lanvin’s got legs
Lanvin's Christmas windows are a little madcap this season with mannequin's arms and legs projecting from trees adorned with bags, shoes and trinkets along with traditional baubles. Spotted on the Rue St Honore, Paris.
Folded Fashion Fabulousness
Melbourne shook off her winter coat on Saturday and served up a balmy spring day which was just perfect for a stroll through the CBD and a spot of 'retail eye spy' ... and having just picked up a brand new zoom lens I went off in search of the good stuff. Colour is everywhere in retail land this season. Melbourne's GPO was running with a striking desert inspired installation to celebrate spring. Made from folded paper, garden beds of cacti showcased the season's 'must haves' amid the blooms. Right next door to GPO the Myer windows had gone to Mecca (the cosmetic variety that is). Again, folded paper delivered another 'make you stop and look' moment (I also happened to chance a snap of that young lady with fabulous red hair in the distance - the new lens works a treat!)
Sportsgirl was the last of my top 3 VM picks in the Bourke Street Mall. Ply wood palm trees in pastel and citrus tones promised a fashion paradise awaiting in store. This retailer always delivers an eye catching entry statement and is worth a look if you're in that part of town. As for the other big brands in the vicinity ... well it was all a bit dull really (a bit like their share prices). Sigh.
Yayoi oi oi oi
My mate Murphy, my mum and my good self went along to the kooky, wonderful, quirky Yayoi Kusama exhibit at GOMA (Brisbane) last Christmas (above). Yayoi has since collaborated with LV on a range of clothing and accessories. The instore experience at Selfridges is indeed just that ... and then some. LV images via Dezeen.
The entry foyer to Zara's flagship in Milan is quite sombre and somehow feels a little 'intimidating' (twice as intimidating when you factor the big burly security guard with an 'eagle eye' for a blogger's camera into the equation!). Some form of dramatic sculptural piece and seasonal fashion showcase is a feature of the minimalist marble entry. Duccio Grassi are the architects behind this rather sensational installation. They are also the architects behind the superb flagship in Rome (below). via Duccio Grassi
Band’s little bit of Wonderland
Kim Band is currently freelancing in London. She was the Creative Director behind the award winning Glasson's (an N.Z. fast fashion brand). Lots of small design detail which I am sure the target demographic loves. I also liked her whimsical pitch for Trellise Cooper's on line presence. via behance.net
Louis is always worth a look
LV invest in VM. Love the gorgeous paper shirt campaign currently wowing around the globe.
Repeat repeat repeat. Clever Calvin Klein windows. Spotted at Chadstone.
These recent windows for Review were a show stopper. I felt like I could have been walking past Printemps in Paris or Selfridges in London. Nice work Myer.
If the shoe fits
The word on the street in downtown Burwood is that Rubi Shoes is doing very nicely as a result of a store makeover. Part of the Cotton On group, it would appear that some serious talent from Top Shop has come on board to direct the new look and feel. From what I hear, it is kicking goals with a 'cheap and cheerful' boot or shoe or two! Nice work Rubi! Spotted at Westfield, Burwood.