Redefining the retail model

Designed to blur the lines between residential and commercial markets

Drechsel Studio

An astute businessman with over 40 years of experience in the commercial furniture industry sought to develop a new retail model. Through extensive engagement sessions, our designers developed the new concept by assisting the client to define their needs, customers, and product offerings.

The design team conducted focus groups and workshops to familiarize themselves with the drivers, customer experience, and global benchmarks. Through an immersive visioning and planning session, the full client and design team collaboratively generated varied customer typologies; the lens through which decisions were made. The team mapped out the showroom’s floor plan on a grid, defining program areas and scenarios for living room vignettes. In addition to its retail function, the multi-use space can host presentations, product launches, pop-ups and special events to support the Architecture & Design community.

The concept for the store is based on a blurring of lines between residential and commercial markets. Our designers helped select the offerings – highly curated, high-end product lines. This was invaluable on two fronts: as designers of the space, we could decipher whether furniture was complementary; as designers-at-large and specifiers, we could advise on whether product lines would be relevant to the markets. The palette was based on new, contemporary, and future material trends – muted colours, such as dusty rose and camouflage green, and blended fabrics –  to appeal to a more sophisticated and connected customer.

Another client directive was that everything in the showroom was available for purchase. Designers worked exclusively with the client’s existing suppliers and vendors to integrate walls units, partitions, and carpets. Essential to the business model was the need for a street presence. The showroom’s lively downtown location presented an opportunity to promote themselves 24/7 with inviting 3D floating window displays that spark interest. This encourages a high level of engagement with the streetscape in this affluent, design-conscious neighbourhood.

  • Client Drechsel Studio
  • Location Toronto, ON, Canada
  • Size 2,500ft 2
  • Construction Value $560,000
  • Completed July 2017