In May 2009, Derek Lam opened its first stand-alone boutique designed by Pritzker Prize winning architecture firm, SANAA. The acclaimed Tokyo-based duo, Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa, together with executive architect Toshihiro Oki, worked to create a space that is marked by modern sensibilities, calculated simplicity and highly perfected detailing.
"I am thrilled to work with architects who share my design philosophy and whose work I so greatly admire," said Lam. "SANAA has created a retail environment that is minimalist, functional, intimate and warm. The store concept is an important step towards solidifying the identity of the brand."
The 2,800 square foot boutique, situated on the ground floor of a 19th century manufacturing building in SoHo, New York, carries Lam's ready-to-wear and accessories collections. Stripped back to the essential bones, custom fitted furniture of wood and aluminum, a one-pour concrete floor and the original brick walls painted white heighten the exhibition nature of the store. Transparent organic forms crafted of clear acrylic create rooms within the store, each one housing a different collection. Dramatic daylight from the large front fau00e7ade windows facing east cast a shimmering aura as light bounces from one transparent bubble to the next.
The store is located at the T-juncture of Crosby and Howard Streets in lower SoHo, a rarefied and sophisticated shopping corner situated just blocks from the SANAA-designed New Museum. Several of New York's most unique and high-end luxury brands chose this quiet location and neighbors include jewelry designer Ted Muehling, antiques specialist De Vera, custom furniture store BDDW, and the Jil Sander boutique.
Nearly a year and a half after opening the flagship store on Crosby Street in SoHo, Derek Lam collaborated once more with Pritzker Prize winning architects, SANAA, and local executive architect Toshihiro Oki to design the second stand-alone boutique located at 764 Madison Avenue in New York.
"Being accessible to both the uptown and downtown customer is essential in New York, so it was a natural progression after establishing the flagship store in SoHo," said Lam.
"We joined the second Derek Lam store project as friends of Derek and Jan-Hendrik ," says SANAA who met award winning designer Derek Lam in 2005. "Following the image of the SoHo store, we wanted the second store to fit the scale and dynamics of Madison Avenue. It was also important for us to integrate Derek Lam's clothing into the store design."
The materials and open floor plan of the 1000 square foot retail space remain simple, allowing the clothing and accessories to be displayed in a gallery-like setting. The shop can be curated freely, and changed depending on the collection and season. A long curving transparent acrylic wall lightly defines rooms for the Ready-to-Wear and accessories collections, while maintaining a view of the entire space. The life of Madison Avenue is also visible from the interior, daylight from outside flows along the acrylic wall's gentle waves, reflecting the colors of the fabrics and street. Read More About Toshihiro Oki HERE.