Interior Designer | My thoughts| My Work
Plans and elevations.
‘Done as part of a team at INTERNO MODA during my employment, not singularly. ”
The basic underlying theme of the design is a fusion of Indian and European in a way that they do not clash to create confusion but complement each other to create something unique and thus have a character of its own. This we achieved by using very contemporary straight lined display units while creating a striking Rajasthan inspired 4 arched canopy at the very centre of the store. The store interiors are in tune with the prêt-a-couture which fuses the Indian designs with western concepts to offer the bridal, Indian and western collections. Atmospherics which refers to the design of an environment via visual communication, lighting, colors, music and scent to stimulate customer’s perceptual and emotional responses and ultimately affect their purchase behavior, have been given great significance in the way the store has been designed.
As humans we are naturally attracted to nature. Keeping this in mind our concept took a more defined shape. Soothing hues and natural elements within this boutique bring about a serene atmosphere to the space. Our focus was to let the customer explore the store.
Store Design Signature:
Inspired by Rajasthani architecture, the boutique portrays a fusion of Indian designs with a touch of contemporary ideas and effectively brings one back to nature. The effect thus produced was “Europein Rajasthan”.
Store Front Design:
The entrance itself speaks of the oomph factor of the boutique with high walls and the open courtyard. Done in creamish yellow tone, the storefront carries a warm and sophisticated look. The façade is fashioned in a contemporary style where the linear look is coupled with a bold chrome signage. Halogen lamps lit from the floor illuminate the façade thus vividly bringing out the rough sand finish plaster of the walls.
The main entrance consists of glass double doors leading into the boutique and embellished antique doors which are in reality fake panels that give an impression of an old “Rajasthani” door folded away to welcome one into the store, like one would into a home. The superfluities have been specially bought all the way from Rajasthan as are the handcrafted Jaisalmer stone “samais” flanking either side of the doorway complement it perfectly and provide a fine balance to the entrance.
Store Interior Design:
The design and layout had to be contemporary to reflect the products, but yet the basic feeling of warmth, comfort and individuality had to be retained. The unique design parameters of a high –end boutique catering to a select clientele was kept in mind. The glass double doors at the entrance offer a gentle invitation and open to a neutral color palette. It is distinct and eye catching with varying shades of pale yellow offset by warm wooden tones. While dark walnut tones of the wooden flooring of wood combine with the opulence of beige wall paint, the décor is still largely understated. The surroundings have been kept more neutral and texture so that the garments themselves are accentuated. The focus was on the product. The décor merely highlights them and provides both the milieu and the drama. The bridal section has been spiced up with a backdrop of paisley motifs in hues of ochre and blue. The lighting is subtle and ambient in order to capture the essence and exclusivity of the products and to create the perfect mood for relaxed shopping. It helps in the buying process. The tree painted on the wall in the reception area and the water body at the entrance, were elements incorporated believing that humans are always drawn to nature in search of calm and peace, these elements helped bring in a certain sense of calm and tranquility, aspects that are most essential when one wants shopping to be a leisurely experience.
Innovative use of materials:
The focus was on using durable materials that would be low on maintenance and yet look good over the years. The material that has been used is long lasting, appealing to the eye and still easy on maintenance and upkeep. The high rise walls created to demarcate the boutique from its surroundings have been constructed using cement sheets instead of the conventional bricks. The cements sheets have been interestingly finished with rough sand plaster.
In the interior, gypsum sheets have been innovatively used to create the three dimensional arches. To add an interesting dimension to the staircase and to do away with a handrail, bead strands have been hung on hooks from the ceiling. The attractive transparent beads while creating a visual barrier keep ones vision away from the staircase leading to the workshop area and glitter in the light adding to the grand look of the boutique. Wooden flooring has been used not just because of the visual appeal and coziness it creates but also since it does not reflect light and hence does not attract attention unlike high gloss tiling.
The basic layout of the boutique is essentially open plan to make the store look spacious and uncluttered.
As one enters the space which is segregated into two levels with a step up the most striking feature and the high light of the boutique, that is, the four arched pillars, welcomes you. The stark contrast afforded by the black headless mannequin clad in the latest designer outfit, placed right in the center leaves one mesmerized. The canopy houses the reception cum billing area.
The store has been divided into western wear, ethnic wear and the bridal and ready-to-wear sections.
The sound of tinkling water tickles your senses all along. The rectangular water body dominates the right hand corner on immediate entrance into the boutique. A granite bridge passing over it leads to the changing room which is unobtrusive since it is placed within the niche of the stairway beyond, thus making optimal use of space. The exterior panels of the changing room house huge mirrors making the space look more spacious besides allowing clients to view themselves. The wall directly opposite has been utilized to display western wear.
Creating a unique zone in the store is the accessory wall, where a traditional tree has been painted on the wall in copper tint to display earrings, neck pieces and bangles besides being a tribute to our “Nature” theme.
As you walk further into the interior, the high back sofa upholstered in white, forms the piece de resistance. This section basically houses all the heavier outfits and bridal wear. The sofa gives one the feeling of being seated on a throne and at the same time proves comfortable for clients as they go through the process of selecting fabrics and designs. Nested tables in steel and glass occupy the central portion of the section and serve as floor units to stack and display the merchandize.
Visual merchandizing And Display:
The merchandize has been displayed on simple shelves and antique rods. It has been brought to life by use of focal lighting recessed into the ceiling. The color palette has been kept neutral in order to focus all the attention solely on the products, which by themselves a lot of color and glitter to the overall display. The merchandise display is straight lined and user friendly and along the periphery of the store, wall mounted in order to make good use of the wall space. The display has been designed anthropometrically keeping in mind the standard height of women. Headless mannequins in black have been used to exhibit outfits. The mannequins were intentionally chosen to be headless and black so as to direct complete attention on the garment rather than on the figurine. These have been placed strategically in every section of the store to create drama. Lighting has played the most fundamental role in visual merchandizing through out the store. The hand painted tree motif on the wall, besides adding an interesting dimension to the theme creates a unique vision of jewels appearing to hang from the tree. The nested tables in glass and steel act as display for stoles and dress materials, while the table top doubles up as a surface to open out materials for better viewing.
Graphics and Signage:
The external signage is the exact antithesis of the traditional entrance to the store, hence it is eye catching. It speaks of the elegance of the store at the very first glance with the understated glitter of the chrome material used for the alphabets forming the stores name
The lighting design had been planned along with the furniture layout. The lighting color and quality bring out the best feature of the boutique, the arches have been highlighted by the subtle use of floor lights which strike the curves of the arches and bring forth the grandeur of Rajasthan in the space. Tungsten halogen lamps have been recessed into the ceiling and angled in such a way that they play the light against shadow to create the distinctive effect of highlighting the merchandize. We have not lumen and lux levels importance since lumens do not measure the psychological and biological effects lighting has on human minds, as also whether the lighting is stimulating enough for the person to relax enough to be able to shop at leisure. Hence the lighting has been expertly choreographed to create the buying mood, a continuum of an all sensory experiential delight by focusing light purposefully on the products in the most requisite and optimal way. Chandeliers have been incorporated to add to the glamour and regality of the space besides illuminating the island displays.
This Store Featured in “The VISUAL MERCHANDIZING AND RETAIL DESIGN (VMRD) magazine)