Retail concepts

It’s not about product so what works in bricks and mortar retail now?



what works in bricks and mortar retail now? Tiina The store Amagansett Christopher Sturman for The New York Times

News broke last week that Debenhams, one of the UK’s biggest department store chains, is closing 50 stores. I worked as a sales girl at Debenhams in Oxford Street during my art student years and I loved it. I worked with amazing people, liked selling and would pop across the road to the Keith Haring and Kenny Scharf exhibitions at the Anthony d’Offay gallery in my lunch hour.

I haven’t really shopped there as an adult, other than occasionally for beauty or pots and pans. I’m more of a high-end heritage shopper or I go to the minimalist stores like Cos and Arket. But it’s a serious warning sign that retail really is changing. Debenhams’ competitors like John Lewis & Partners and Selfridges have been much better at creating a modern lifestyle destination, which taps into the idea that stores aren’t only for shopping. (more…)



Secret shopping: 45R arrives in London



45R Brook Street london

Japanese slow fashion brand, 45R has just opened its London outpost at 6 Brook Street, selling its cult denim, lived in knits and quilted outerwear. The Americans may be the originators but the Japanese are experts at producing artisan-quality denim that you’ll keep for years. (At 45R they hover between £350 and £800 which gives you an idea of the level of quality we’re talking about.) (more…)



Julianne Moore for Porter Magazine



Julianne Moore for Porter Magazine by Camilla Akrans

Camilla Akrans’ editorial of Julianne Moore in Porter Magazine is beyond breathtaking. There’s an extreme close up of an eye (I’m a sucker for an extreme close-up), an abstract portrait shot through a gauze scrim, a fruit and flower still life, and basically hardly any clothes on view.

Remember, this is Porter, the Net-a-Porter catalogue disguised as a magazine. It’s supposed to sell clothes! And yet this abstract treatment makes me more, not less, likely to click through. (more…)



Buy it now: Farfetch X Uniform Wares



Farfetch Uniform Wares Disneyrollergirl by Joe Harper

Funny isn’t it, how despite our tech-invaded world, so many of us still prefer an old-school analogue watch over yet another screen clamped to our wrist. Or maybe not so funny. I’ve noticed that my younger digital native friends are getting fatigued by screen time and craving the simplicity of cash, books and classic timepieces.

Of course, most of us want both. That’s definitely the case for my generation, who grew up with analogue, but for the past ten years has had a foot in both camps. I love my tech devices but I’m equally cynical about them and appreciate that time passes more leisurely when I’m not reacting to endless notifications.

So this collaboration between Farfetch and watchmaker Uniform Wares is, er, timely. (more…)