et al. collaborative recently completed the design for a new retail boutique located on Church Ave. It's Alumni of New York's second store to open on the heals of a recent identity rebrand.
From the street, a floor-to-ceiling storefront windows showcases the latest limited edition sneakers framed in a 10' cube light sculpture that invites in the surrounding community. The light structure is an abstract take on a jungle gym with connotations of style and play, simultaneously evoking the hopscotch chalk lines or playgrounds from area parks and the flash of fashion runway. Brass mannequins live inside the light display, dressed with limited-edtion apparel and sneakers with the occasional one-of-a-kind piece; hand-painted or customized by local artists.
"We started with the concept of using the subtlety of the storefront to act as a frame for a visually impactful interior," commented José Núñez, designer at et al. collaborative. "The important part of any project is working collaboratively with the client to make each idea come alive. Working alongside Gene Han, we were able to generate a raw, industrial palette that not only showcased the grit and aesthetic of Brooklyn, but also enhanced the vibrant color palette of the clothes and sneakers against the walls. The light sculpture gave the space a focal point. We wanted to create a presence and capture the attention of everyone passing by."
The shop is lined with sections of steel shelving, displaying the latest styles of special issue sneakers and flat-brimmed hats. The east wall, still covered in partial layers of wallpaper and contains clues and dents from the location's tumultuous days as a bookie gambling venue. The opposite wall contrasts with a hand-parged concrete veneer that serves as a background for colorful sneakers. Each display unit was designed and coordinated by et al. collaborative to elevate and curate the continuously changing collections.
Photos: Warren Chow and Meigan Canfield