New York based cult boutique Opening Ceremony has opened its first European store in London’s Covent Garden. The lo-fi interiors play host to a mix of high end fashion, accessories, books and art installations.
Fusing fashion and art, clothing is displayed on a large scale furniture installation called Tinker created especially for the space by British designer Faye Toogood. As well as fashion ranges from a mix of British and international labels, the store also features a bookshop-in-shop curated by well-known London art bookstore Claire de Rouen. In the centre of the store is a glass cube that doubles as an exhibition space.
Eager to raise awareness of the store before its official opening, the brand opened a pop-up space adjacent to the permanent site in July 2012. Launched to coincide with the London 2012 Olympic Games, this enabled Opening Ceremony to capitalise on the increased footfall generated by the Olympics.
The store relies heavily on the “cool factor”, with service coming further down the scale of importance. However, despite this the store manages to eschew the intimidating ambience of many upscale boutiques with many shoppers entering simply to browse. This is achieved with fun house-shaped furniture, use of lo-fi materials and playful visual merchandising.
Consumer Insights: Bringing together a selection of product ranges in an inviting retail space will encourage a varied mix of consumers to step over the threshold and explore the brand.
Brand take-away: Collaborations with other brands and creatives allows Opening Ceremony to focus on their fashion offer, while entrusting the art and book curation to those who have established themselves as influential authorities in these markets. The fact that both Claire de Rouen and Faye Toogood are based in London adds a nod to local culture.