The window shop: gateway to a fantasy world

What is a window shop?

The window shop is the business card of a store and the first impression left on a commercial space; it’s the nymph that draws you inside and the element that says everything about the beautiful, unique, conceptual store you are about to enter and the products you are about to buy.  The window shop is a story, a setting that incorporates a variety of elements which best highlight the quality and characteristics of the products displayed.  


The concept theme for a window shop?  “The sky’s the limit? How claustrophobic!”

Definitely!  Any ingenious architect can find a way to materialize the idea, the concept of the store in such a manner that exploits and generates a paradise of colors, textures, dimensions and forms. With the help of several tricks (which express balance, contrast, repetition, maybe symmetry, well defined contours for interest points, distorted perspectives) and the use of light and specific, concrete materials, the architect can shape the brand’s philosophy into a fantasy world you will definitely want to experience. 



Can you imagine that the first person to take an interest in window shops is the author of “The Wizard of Oz”, L. Frank Baum? He believed in the exceptionality of window shops, as necessary and distinctive features for every store. He wasn’t the only one. Artists such as Salavador Dali (we know him because of his bizarre, surrealist works) and Andy Warhol (with his pop art paintings of Marilyn Monroe) have also amazed us with radical window shop compositions. 



Depending on the profile of the store, on the marketable products and the branding strategy, the architect can synthesize “the personality” of the store and can bring it in the foreground, in the visual field of the viewer. How? The advertising setting of a window shop must be based on a theme – it can be contemporary, baroque, minimalist, neoclassical, art deco or any other style that fits the context. The resulting ensemble combines textures, materials, pale colors – nude, strong, even neon (for example red is  a symbol for shopping and yellow is a highlighting color, the first color that stands out) furnishings, flowers or other decorative elements. The role of lighting is also defined. The setting must be emphasized throughout the day and during the night. Lighting objects (that can be integrated into the design) are the elements that outline the general, ambient or accentuating light. 



The role of interior architecture is to create a special, fantastical universe which pull you in, without being  visually aggressive to the viewer, and more importantly, its role is to bring to life the characteristics of the brand (regardless of the marketable products - clothing, shoes, accessories, furniture, different types of equipments, food, personal care products, etc. )



Honestly, looking at some of the window shops out there, I can imagine myself living in them, in another story and another movie, in another world every single time. Wouldn’t you? 

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