Excerpt: The Store between the Lines, designed by LIJO.RENY.architects, intended to create spatial drama and intimate, tactile experience. The store takes maximum advantage of the prime location. Through strategically orchestrated window displays on the street side, a certain level of translucency is created, giving passersby a sneak peek into the store, leading them to find out more.
[Text as submitted by Architect] ‘Magis’ had etched its way into its clients’ hearts as a famous women’s wear brand in South India for the last 13 years. When it came to hosting their products, with their flagship store in Thrissur, the owners wanted the space to reflect the qualities of their products that had made them famous. ‘The store between the lines’, as it’s fondly called, was the result of this dream.
The store takes maximum advantage of the prime location. Through strategically orchestrated window displays on the street side, a certain level of translucency is created, giving passersby a sneak peek into the store, leading them to find out more. The store’s facade is devoid of any significant changes from the existing building. It is brought together with only a minor intervention utilizing a painted metal trellis. This would connect the various parts of the store front, when the flowering creepers attain total growth and act as a dynamic frame for the store windows.
Though the store is designed to create spatial drama, it allows an intimate and tactile experience of the products displayed within it. The white display unit, in glossy automotive paint finish, in the centre of the room creates a focal point for showing the store’s luxury items. While hiding a central column, this unit makes a loop in the store’s layout that prompts the customers to walk around it discovering things in the store as they go along.
The numerous cement-finished platforms surrounding the store’s interior perimeter rise to varying heights in continuation of the cement-finished flooring. It acts as a pedestal for stacking the products, accommodates props during seasonal decorations, and becomes seating for customers or a table for discussions. This allows changes in the general display configuration from time to time, creating interest in their frequent customers.
The hanging clothes are accommodated on stainless steel box sections that rise and fall from the platform and the floor in a random but controlled continuous loop around the store. The LED strip light, used for the general lighting, looks like it’s suspended in midair, reflects the layout of the S.S box section in a plan, and completes the loop.
An entire rear wall has storage cabinets covered by sliding mirror shutters that help double the space visually. These cabinets stack excess products and can be accessed when a customer demands. The neutral shades of grey dominate the overall colour scheme becoming a backdrop for the several colours, shades and textures the Magis designers bring into their collection each season.
The window display, too, can be easily changed by employing a simple yet versatile system, developed by the architects, fixed onto the ceiling inside the store, above the display windows. This user-friendly system helps those at the store change the display according to their need or seasonal demand quickly and efficiently.
The store’s honesty, simplicity, and functionality exemplify the character of the products that Magis is known for.