Stone Island enlisted OMA/AMO to forge its new retail identity. The updated spatial branding has been unveiled at the Italian fashion label’s Chicago store.
The retail-design scheme emphasizes Stone Island’s focus on technology and development and seeks to share that with the brand’s audience by providing a hub for public presentations, salons, workshops and private events. Explains AMO creative director Samir Bantal: ‘The space, materiality and [programme] of the stores underpin the brand’s ethos and reinforce a sense of belonging of its community of like-minded people.’ In Chicago, altar-like areas and niches for displaying archival pieces and prototypes punctuate the 180-sq-m layout, embodying the experimental process adopted at Stone Island’s Ravarino, Italy, headquarters.
A digital chandelier umbrellas the entry hallway, paralleled by bright orange flooring. Inside, panels created from compressed shredded paper and resin emulate the look of concrete and stone. Burnt, sandblasted and coated cork – the main material within global Stone Island stores – and sand-coated corrugated steel round out the tactile palette. Further debuts of the new spatial-design direction are soon to follow in Seoul, Munich and Stockholm.
Stone Island is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year, making its retail overhaul a timely forward push. The brand’s stores have always taken on an industrial identity, one that has come to include technology both literally and as a symbol for progress. At the same time, as an apparel label, uplifting materiality and tactility is important. OMA/AMO’s design direction balances these factors well while making it possible for Stone Island to reach out to its community better, a foremost task for today’s retailers.
Designed by AMO
Photography by Marco Cappelletti