The Shop at Bluebird: A Playground of Wonders

One of the pleasures of shopping in the physical world is the joy of discovery. However it’s not often that you stumble upon a completely new concept store in central London, especially not a 1,500 sqm one. Welcome to “The Shop at Bluebird” nestled in Floral Street, a stone’s throw from Covent Garden Piazza. Described by its creators Dalziel & Pow as a ‘playground of wonders’ it certainly creates a huge statement in an area rediscovering itself as a “jewel” in London’s retail crown.     If the name itself sounds familiar it’s no surprise as the Bluebird was an…

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MissGuided: Heat Seeking Fashion Gets Physical

Born and bred online, young fashion retailer Missguided is now cutting its terrestrial teeth as it continues to roll out its physical flagship stores to major shopping centres in the UK. Full of attitude, high on fashion and riding a dynamic rollercoaster the task in hand was always to translate this successful e-commerce formula into real stores considering their limitations of space, product availabilities and operational restrictions. And while it learns well from the best of bricks ‘n’ mortar it brings new thinking and ideas to the physical space without the baggage of tradition constantly pulling it back down to…

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Missguided Opinion: Cracks in the E-commerce Golden Egg

The Evening Post:- 20th March “Missguided Opinion: Cracks in the E-commerce Golden Egg!”   Firstly, let me say I am a huge fan of Missguided. Whilst not the classic target customer I remember the palpable excitement of walking through their first store in Westfield Stratford, conceived in collaboration with Dalziel & Pow. It was such a refreshing store with so many ideas for the new era of physical shopping, not bogged down or held back by the mistakes and misconceptions of a retail history. The way it used the entrance to create amazing theatre and spectacle, the way it combined the latest…

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Spanish Statement: The Primark Pinnacle of Pre-eminence

As part of VM-unleashed’s 10th anniversary year we take a look back at some retail milestones from the last decade and explain why each store’s message is as relevant for us today as it was then. The last decade has seen the rise of Primark as a tour de force in the world of value fashion as it strides from the UK and Ireland across Spain, Germany, Italy and now to the United States. It is easy but incorrect to brand Primark as simply low prices. These it certainly has through its volume driven supply chain efficiencies however the success…

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MissGuided: Heat Seeking Fashion

Born and bred online, young fashion retailer Missguided is now cutting its terrestrial teeth as it continues to roll out its physical flagship stores to major shopping centres in the UK. Full of attitude, high on fashion and riding a dynamic rollercoaster the task in hand was always to translate this successful e-commerce formula into real stores considering their limitations of space, product availabilities and operational restrictions.   In reality the stores do exude all the brand energy and then some, with a bright and brash environment, a heavy emphasis on visual merchandising and mannequins, digital screens of all sizes…

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Max&Co: Fashionably Good Company

Stylish and socially sophisticated Max&Co still packs a huge punch of personality into every meticulously planned meter of its store experience. A warm welcome from manicured mannequins with lipstick, lashes and a coy curiosity immediately alerts any casual customer that this lady of the more fashionable lanes offers a lifestyle proposition both feminine, fashionable and fun. The store design from top to bottom communicates an individualistic tone of voice from the spindle legs of its fixtures and furniture, the lazy lamps that splash light across displays, the beautifully crafted oval mirrors, the porcelain owls and swifts that sail across the…

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Stand & Stare: Pull & Bear Take to the Road

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The anti-corporate momentum builds…

 

as recognised brands balance the safety of recognition and loyalty with the excitement of individual assortments, personal enhancements and store environments that look like they come off the back of a lorry rather than the end of the corporate conveyer belt.

Pull & Bear, from the biggest brand house about, have a new store, urban and improvised, re-stressed and distressed. The logo is viewed through the glass blocked windows of the municipal shelter, whilst tiles and timbers, the remnants of a ruined landscape, are used to create the tables, fixtures and focal points.

The assortment is mixed with originality, imagination and unusual juxtapositions away from historical categories, whilst unit depth, table piles and the order of colour and fashion position are all for experimentation for the pleasure of the modern customers delectation. The abandoned Beetle drives a solitary path through brand convention as this innovative emporium tests the limits of brand conformity, and the battle for loyalty enters an ever more familiar territory.

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…is your brand stuck in your corporate past, or responding to customer trends and forcing the market with innovative store environments and creative customer engagement?

 

VM-unleashed has worked with retailers to develop commercially based but innovative store environments.

Crew’s Control: Red Hot BluePrint for International Expansion

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After the tantalising teaser of mens and womens only stores,

… the fully fledged J Crew opened with fun and fanfares, and stars & stripes, in London’s Regent Street. The template taken from major US cities sits comfortably amongst the mid-level and high level brands of one of the UKs most prestigious addresses.

However, of more significance than bricks and mortar, furniture & fixtures, tops and trousers is the expansion strategy combining both the landing of identikit stores to identified customer segments throughout the globe, in combination with the entry of exclusive niche fashion destinations, assortment and experience elite, located in select sites, destinations for the well-heeled.

Fashion flagships and exclusive emporiums suit the wider objective of creating a worldwide brand, which is both in-reach yet out-of-reach. Exclusivity with Economics.

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…are you being smart & sophisticated when it comes to your international expansion, format development, customer segmentation…location strategy

 

Scotch & Soda: The World through a Glass Half Full

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Lifestyle brands take inspiration from the globe, nourish it, nurture it and develop it for like-minded individuals throughout the world.

Scotch & Soda takes its soul of adventure from the streets of Amsterdam to the familiar scenes of the Seine, further-afield to African plains: from Savannah to Soho, from Paris to Paradise. The collections are carefully constructed and beautifully embellished delivered with style & simplicity into stores and social sites.

Web pages subtly combine product with context, breaking the conveyor belt format with injections of inspiration and carefully constructed narrative. Bringing individuality to the masses has led Scotch & Soda down an Amsterdam Avenue pop-up shop where artefacts and treasures from the travels of creative minds are free for exploration and discovery in their own right.

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Blended Scotch: Dutch Courage from the Avenues of Amsterdam

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Own your stores to conquer the world.

Amsterdam innovators Scotch & Soda continue to expand with an impressive portfolio of directly owned stores. True to the values of the brand the stores create a journey of exploration combining expected adjacencies with unlikely bedfellows in an environment of creative interest.

From its menswear origins the retailer now creates collections for boys – Scotch Shrunk, catering for children in the image of their fathers as well as Maison Scotch, for the modern woman and R’Belle for the daughters of style ambassadors. Success is no Scotch mist, but the sweet smell of Soda Success.

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