With the new simplistic interior design for a Stockholm shop of the high fashion brand Fifth Avenue Shoe Repair, the Swedish practice Guise was nominated for this year’s Great indoors Award, initiated by internationally renowned magazine Frame. Within the same event Guise was awarded Design Firm of the Year 2009.
Here is what the designers say:
“The project concerns a new concept store for Fifth Avenue Shoe Repair. The Swedish fashion brand Fifth Avenue Shoe Repair works with traditional typologies of clothes but deconstructs them and create new hybrid garments. The assignment was to design an entirely new concept store that meets the commercial aspects of a retail space, but foremost to design the spatial encounter with the brand Fifth Avenue Shoe Repair.”
The retail concept is based on Fifth Avenue Shoe Repair design methods, but transferred into architecture. Existing architectural typologies have been deformed in order to meet both the functional and the commercial requirements for a store interior. The visual presences of the furniture are designed to be ambivalent; they should resemble a stair although clearly having another purpose.
Jani Kristoffersen, one of the founders of Guise explains: “The ambition was to use strong silhouettes whereupon we choose a double helix-shaped stair as a basic form. In order to adapt the helix shape to meet the functional requirements we had to deform the shape of the stair until it met the commercial need for exposure, but also in order to give it an unique character of its own”.
Andreas Ferm, one of the founders of Guise continues: “Since the main form is folded and rotated it both conceals and exposes the garments and accessories while you move through the store. The rotated shape aims to create a more dynamic experience for the customers, by that we try to create a more well directed spatial experience.”
“The stairs has become the main spatial carriers of the retail concept Fifth Avenue Shoe Repair, but in addition to the stairs a shelving system was designed to meet the flexible needs of the store. The exposure has to adapt to the changing needs of a retail shop. Each shelf is designed and tailored specially for each placement in the store. The shelves consist of a rigorous framework of steel rods, which together create a matrix of small cubic space in the structure, all with dimensions of 360x360x360 mm. By using the cubic dimensions of the structure, the clothes that hung in its bottom exposed in two directions, either along a wall, or by turning 90 degrees to allow for a frontal exposure from a wall.
To the shelf, hundreds of thin black steel plates were designed in order to make the shelf to become rearrangeable by changing the position of the plates. Both the visual aesthetics and the functionality of the shelves are radically changed by shifting the position of the plates.
Not only the furniture has been custom made, but also the cash register, the doll exposure, fitting rooms, doors and the mirrors are special designed to enhance the overall shopping experience.”