At the invitation of Simons, Ruby has reimagined architectural designer John Pawson’s original design of the CALVIN KLEIN flagship store. This transformation takes cues from Ruby’s vision for his two previous CALVIN KLEIN projects: redesigning the ground floor lookspace and 12th floor showroom at the company’s 205 W 39th Street headquarters. The floor to ceiling installation at the Madison Avenue store was devised as an intermediary step to celebrate the arrival of Raf Simons’ debut CALVIN KLEIN 205W39NYC collection, prior to a forthcoming full renovation of the building.
“I wanted the store to generate a very immediate physical experience that could as well be intimately connected to the collections”
To reflect that impermanence, the design incorporates and invokes an environment under construction – scaffolding fills the space and an overwhelming wash of bright yellow paint coats the walls and invades interior volumes, reflecting the warning color of cautionary tape and traffic signs. The installation is an immersive floor to ceiling environment that traverses art and industry, reflecting the artist’s own obsessions as well as a new era for CALVIN KLEIN presenting a vision of America’s gleaming highs and its gritty lows. The use of color, everyday materials and the serviceable nature of scaffolding brought indoors all give the reimagined flagship store a warm, youthful energy, communicating the celebration of change and progress at the brand.
“I’m taking the CALVIN KLEIN flagship store from minimal to maximal; my design should be seen as a marker to celebrate the future of the brand”
“I wanted the store to generate a very immediate physical experience that could as well be intimately connected to the collections,” said Simons. “It is also a continuation of the language I am creating with Sterling for CALVIN KLEIN’s visible and physical identity. The use of very direct and familiar references common to the American visual experience creates a simple and emotional connection with the brand.”
“I’m taking the CALVIN KLEIN flagship store from minimal to maximal; my design should be seen as a marker to celebrate the future of the brand,” said Ruby. “I wanted the store to glow from within, representing a new day for CALVIN KLEIN.”
The store features the arrival of the Fall 2017 CALVIN KLEIN 205W39NYC men’s and women’s collection, a mix of marching band uniforms, plastic coated protection, power broker tailoring, antique handcrafted quilting, workwear, and western wear. Looks seen on the runway of Raf Simons’ Fall 2017 debut for CALVIN KLEIN will be available to shop, including new brand offerings CALVIN KLEIN JEANS ESTABLISHED 1978 and CALVIN KLEIN UNDERWEAR 205W39NYC, among a robust assortment of CALVIN KLEIN 205W39NYC apparel and accessories for men and women.
A curated collection of objects for the home can be seen throughout the store; some found and curated, some designed to pay homage to the roots of the brand. New product assortments from the best in class; from iconic Homer Laughlin coffee mugs, to a hand-selected assortment of Rose Cabat feelies, all also reference a nod to the high-low and finest in design. One of a kind vintage American quilts dominate the first assortment and celebrate the quintessential American bed; alongside white bedding new to the brand, and vibrant Italian vintage glassware—all integrated among apparel and accessories throughout the store.
The reimagined store concept approaches the retail experience from a modern and immersive point of view. Upon exploring the three expansive floors of the space, one experiences a playful interaction of categories that in a traditional retail concept would be compartmentalized. All categories, while each having a unique identity within the space, interact with one another in a spirited and unexpected way, creating an energizing shopping experience for the client.