HUSSEIN CHALAYAN flagship store Mayfair London.

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This project continues a long standing working relationship with the fashion designer Hussein Chalayan and ZCD Architects.

HUSSEIN-CHALAYAN-FLAGSHIP-STORE_AN-shopfitting-magazine retail design

The design of his first London shop is based around the concept of a ‘shop within a shop’ and the notion of stepping into another world.

A threshold zone at the entrance defines a liminal zone; an in between space that marks the transition between street and shop.

The simple insertion of a black steel frame defines the shop within the existing space, one simple move that creates both definition and a hanging rail for the clothes.

The frame creates a distorted perspective within an existing perspective. Only three objects sit within the space – the black hull of a boat which transforms from display to a dinner table, a sleek black lacquered cash desk with a digital timer set flush into it’s surface and a black rope­bound waiting bench.

The digital timer in the cash desk runs continuously; a reminder of time passing within a static space, rather than telling the actual time.

HUSSEIN CHALAYAN zcd architects

A language has been developed with Chalayan over the last 10 years, and some of these ingredients have been carried through from previous projects; for example, the triangular shaped tiles (originally a reference to a backgammon board in the Tokyo space) and the black pebbles that separate the steel frame from the walls of the shop. The working process is collaborative, and this dialogue feeds the design process and the project as a whole between space and collection.

The important thing, is the creation of an environment, a back drop to the clothes, rather than over designing the space. The space has been designed not just as a retail environment but an event space for shows, talks and performances, hence the boat transforms into a table around which up to 12 people can be seated for dinner, or, the steel rail can carry objects other than clothes.

Previous projects by Zoe Smith with Chalayan include a retail space in Tokyo, his first solo exhibition at The Design Museum “From Fashion and Back” (which also toured to Tokyo and Istanbul), a number of concession spaces in Comme de Garcon’s Dover Street Market in London and a large scale exhibition at Musee des Arts Decoratifs in Paris in 2011.

Design ZCD Architects

Fit- Out Contractor Bluegroup Retail Boat fabricated by Ben Legg Joinery
Cash Desk, Ashview Joinery
Lighting by Lightworks Ltd
Photos courtesy Leon Chew
by AN shopfitting magazine no.130 ©