I met my friend Robin yesterday and we spent some time window-shopping in Carnaby Street and Covent Garden. Whilst I liked the interactive window design of the nikeID store on Neal Street I didn’t have to be worried about retail temptation.
I felt uninspired by what I saw at Stussy, Carhartt, Howies and the two adidas boutiques that I checked out. Stussy’s non-sale items were predominantly ‘stock’ designs: that is a small Stussy signature on the front and a big one on the back of the garment. Carhartt seemed to be same as last season, as was Howies.
adidas by Seven Dials had a range of Vespa co-branded shoes that were very reminscent of Camper in style and form, meanwhile the branch on Newburgh Street had some pretty bland colour-ways of adidas ZX7000, 8000 and 9000 models. Whilst items could be purchased at great prices, there wasn’t designs and styles that inspired me to take the retail plunge. Maybe its just that I am decluttering my home at the moment, but there seemed to be a design crunch as well as a credit crunch in place.
This isn’t by any means an exhaustive or objective survey, but it made me think that the shops and designers may need more than a release of the credit wind pipe to mark a return to more prosperous times by rethinking both products and retail experiences.