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Visual Merchandising and Display

Visual Merchandising and Display

Visual Merchandising and Display

Sixth Edition

Martin M. Pegler

Fairchild Books

New York

Executive Editor: Olga T. Kontzias Senior Associate Acquiring Editor: Jaclyn Bergeron Assistant Acquisitions Editor: Amanda Breccia Editorial Development Director: Jennifer Crane Associate Development Editor: Lisa Vecchione Creative Director: Carolyn Eckert Assistant Art Director: Sarah Silberg Production Director: Ginger Hillman Senior Production Editor: Elizabeth Marotta Copyeditor: Susan Hobbs Ancillaries Editor: Noah Schwartzberg Executive Director & General Manager: Michael Schluter Associate Director of Sales: Melanie Sankel Senior Account Manager: Allison Jones Cover Design: Carolyn Eckert Cover Art: TK Text Design and layout: Alicia Freile, Tango Media Illustrations: TK Copyright © 2012 Fairchild Books,

a Division of Condé Nast Publications.

All rights reserved. No part of this book covered by the copyright hereon may be reproduced or used in any form or by any means—graphic, electronic, or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, taping, or information storage and retrieval systems—without written permission of the publisher.

Library of Congress Catalog Card Number: 2010943283

ISBN: 978-1-60901-084-3 GST R 133004424 Printed in the United States of America TPXX CHXX

Extended C ontents

Preface

xiii

Neutral C olors

14

Acknowledgments

xiv

Using C olor t o Promote C olor

15

 

Texture

17

Part One

Getting Started -

 

Visual Merchandising and Display Basics

xvi

  • 3 Line and Composition

21

 

Line

22

  • 1 Why Do We Display?

1

Vertical L ines

22

  • 2 Color and Texture

9

Horizontal L ines

22

Physical a nd Psychological R eactions t o C olor

11

Curved L ines

22

Yellow

11

Diagonal L ines

23

Orange

11

Composition

23

Red

11

Balance

23

Pink

11

Dominance

26

Green

11

Contrast

26

Blue

11

Proportion

26

Blue-Green

11

Rhythm

27

Peach

12

Repetition

29

Rust

12

 

Violet/Purple

12

  • 4 Light and Lighting

31

Gray

12

The C olor o f L ight

32

Brown

12

Planning W indow L ighting

32

White

12

Lighting t he O pen-Back W indow

33

Black

12

Lighting t he C losed-Back W indow

34

Color Families

12

Planning Store I nterior L ighting

34

Color M ixing

13

New L ighting Trends

35

Color S chemes

13

General, o r Primary, L ighting

35

Analogous, o r A djacent, C olors

13

Fluorescent L ighting

36

Complementary C olors

13

Compact F luorescent L amps ( CFL)

37

Contrasting C olors

14

Incandescent L ighting

37

Monochromatic C olors

14

High-Intensity D ischarge ( HID) L ighting

38

MR16 a nd M R11

39

  • 7 Display Window Construction

71

Metal H alide L amps

39

Closed-Back W indows

72

Ceramic M etal H alide L amps

40

Floor

73

LED ( Light-Emitting D iode)

40

Back o f t he W indow

74

Secondary, o r A ccent, L ighting

41

Ceiling

75

Colored L ights a nd F ilters

41

Sidewalls

77

Planning Store L ighting

43

Proscenia

77

Suggestions f or U sing L ight E ffectively

45

Masking

77

 

Open-Back W indows

78

  • 5 Types of Display and Display Settings

49

Island W indows

80

Types o f D isplays

51

Special W indows

81

One-Item D isplay

51

Shadow B oxes

81

Line-of-Goods D isplay

51

Elevated W indows

82

Related M erchandise D isplay

51

Deep W indows

82

Variety o r A ssortment D isplay

51

Tall W indows

83

Promotional v ersus I nstitutional D isplays

52

Make-Your-Own-Display W indows

83

Types o f D isplay S ettings

55

Runways, C atwalks, a nd U p-Front D isplays

84

Realistic S etting

55

 

Environmental S etting

55

  • 8 Store Interiors

87

Semirealistic S etting

56

Focal Points

88

Fantasy S etting

56

Island D isplays

89

Abstract S etting

57

Risers a nd P latforms

89

Buildup D isplay

59

The R unway

89

 

The C atwalk

90

Part t w O

w h ere to Display

62

Counters a nd D isplay C ases

90

 

Museum C ases

92

  • 6 The Exterior of the Store

63

Demonstration C ubes

92

Signs

64

Ledges

92

Marquees

64

Shadow B oxes

95

Outdoor L ighting

64

Enclosed D isplays

95

Banners

65

Fascia

96

Planters

65

T-Walls

97

Awnings

65

100-Percent Traffic A reas

97

Windows i n Storefront D esign

66

 

Straight Front

66

Part t h ree

w h at to Use for

Angled Front

67

Successful Displays

100

Arcade Front

67

 

Corner W indow

67

  • 9 Mannequins

101

Mall Storefronts

68

Types o f M annequins

103

Open Façade

68

 

Realistic M annequins

103

Glass Façade

69

Semirealistic M annequins

106

Closed Façade

69

Semi-abstract M annequins

107

 

Abstract M annequins

107

Cartoon/Caricature M annequins

 

109

Finishes

152

Headless M annequins

109

Wood F ixtures a nd Store F ittings

153

 

Today’s F ixtures

157

  • 10 Alternatives to the Mannequin

 

111

Interactive F ixtures

157

Three-Quarter F orms

115

 

Other F orms

116

  • 13 Visual Merchandising and Dressing Fixtures

161

Soft-Sculpted F igures

119

Visual M erchandising

162

Articulated A rtist’s F igure

119

Customer-Oriented V isual M erchandising

162

Dress F orms a nd S uit F orms

119

Dominance b y C olor

163

Cutout F igures

121

Dominance b y C oordination

163

Inflatables

122

Dominance b y B rand N ame

165

Drapers

122

Dominance b y S ize

166

Hangers

123

Dominance b y Price

167

Lay-Down Techniques

123

Dominance b y E nd U se

167

Pinup Techniques

125

Front-to-Back V isual M erchandising

167

Flying Techniques

126

Visual Presentation

168

 

Visual M erchandising a nd t he R etailer

168

  • 11 Dressing the Three-Dimensional Form

 

129

Dressing F ixtures

169

Dressing a M annequin

 

130

T-Stands

169

Rigging a S uit F orm

133

Stock H olders

170

Shirt B oard

134

Quad R acks

170

Shirt F orms

135

Round R acks

170

Forms a nd C ustomer A ttitude

135

Back Wall

171

 

Gondolas

172

  • 12 Fixtures

137

Aisle Tables

173

Stands

 

139

Clothing o n H ang-Rods

174

Platforms a nd E levations

139

Shoulder-Out H anging

174

Costumers, Valets, a nd D rapers

140

Face-Out H anging

174

Easels

140

Single-Rod H anging

174

Pipe R acks

142

Double-Rod H anging ( One R od O ver t he Other)

174

Counters o r S howcases

142

 

Assorted C ounter F ixtures

143

  • 14 Modular Fixtures and Systems

Ledge F ixtures

145

in Store Planning

177

Floor a nd Freestanding F ixtures

146

Use o f M odular F ixtures

178

Round R acks

147

Use o f S ystems

179

T-Stands

147

Types o f S ystems

180

Quad R acks, o r F our-Way Faceouts

148

Hollow Tubes w ith F inger F ittings

180

Other F loor F ixtures

149

Clamps

181

Selecting a F ixture

151

Extruded U prights

182

Appearance

151

Slotted J oiners

182

Construction

151

Slotted U prights

182

End U se

151

Selecting a S ystem

182

Upkeep

152

Looks

183

  • VIII V I S U A L

M E R C H A N D I S I N G

A N D

D I S P L A y

 

End U se

184

Mother’s D ay

227

Construction

184

Patriotic

228

Upkeep

184

Spring

228

Adaptability

184

Valentine’s D ay

229

Price

184

 
 
  • 18 Masking and Proscenia

233

  • 15 Furniture as Props

187

Venetian B linds

236

Chairs

188

Window S hades

237

Tables

193

Foam C ore a nd B oard

238

Armoires a nd C abinets

194

Lath-Lattice Panels

239

Drawer U nits

195

Plants

239

 

Ribbons a nd Streamers

239

Part F O U r

Visual Merchandising and

Bamboo B linds

240

Display t e chniques

200

Wrapping M aterials

240

 

Natural M aterials

241

  • 16 Attention-Getting Devices

201

 

Color

203

  • 19 Sale Ideas

243

Lighting

203

Mannequins

244

Line a nd C omposition

204

Graphics

246

Scale

204

Magic

247

Contrast

205

Cleaning U p

248

Repetition

205

 

Humor

205

  • 20 Fashion Accessories

251

Mirrors

207

Providing t he S etting

252

Nostalgia

207

Importance o f Props t o Fashion A ccessory D isplay

256

Motion

208

Gloves a nd B ags

256

Surprise a nd S hock

210

Jewelry

258

Props

211

 
 
  • 21 Home Fashions, Hard Goods,

  • 17 Familiar Symbols

217

and Food Displays

263

Anniversaries

218

Home Fashions

264

Back t o S chool a nd C ollege

219

Hard G oods

267

Bridal

219

Create L ifestyle S ituations

268

Career Fashions

220

Smalls I tems

269

Christmas

220

Large I tems

269

Clearance S ales

221

Food D isplays

270

Cruise Wear, R esort Wear, S un Wear, a nd S wimwear

221

Fresh Produce

270

Easter

222

Prepared F oods

272

Fall

223

 

Father’s D ay

224

  • 22 Graphics and Signage

275

Formals

224

What A re G raphics?

276

Halloween

225

Graphics a nd L ifestyle

276

Lingerie

225

Graphics i n R etail Stores

277

 

E X T E N D E D

C o N T E N T S

  • I X

Signage

 

278

Discount a nd Factory O utlet Stores

324

Drawings

278

Vendor S hops

325

Color a nd C ontrast

279

Kiosks a nd R etail M erchandising U nits ( RMUs)

328

Sizes f or S igns a nd C ards

280

Pop-Up S hops

331

Types o f S igns a nd C ards

283

 

Techniques f or Preparing S ignage

283

Part Six

r e lated a r eas of Visual

Silk S creening

283

Merchandising and Display

334

Sign M achines

284

 

Other S ignage Techniques

284

  • 27 Point-of-Purchase Display

335

 

What I s P OP?

336

Part Fi V e

Visual Merchandising and Planning

288

Why P OP?

337

 

Who U ses P OP, a nd W here?

338

  • 23 Visual Merchandise Planning

 

289

POP Longevity

339

Display C alendar

290

Designing t he P OP U nit

340

Planning a D isplay

291

Product

340

The V isual M erchandiser’s Part i n Store Promotion

294

Unit

340

Scheduling t he Promotion

294

Timing

341

 

Tie-Ins

341

  • 24 Setting Up a Display Shop

 

297

End U sage

341

Physical R equirements

298

Production R un

341

Furniture

298

Shipping

341

Tools a nd S upplies i n t he D isplay S hop

299

Light a nd M otion

342

Hand Tools

300

Cost

342

Power Tools

300

Specialists i n P OP D esign

342

Basic Trimmings

300

Materials U sed i n t he C onstruction o f P OP D isplays

343

Lighting E quipment

300

Paper a nd C ardboard

343

Books, Publications, a nd R eference M aterials

301

Plastics

347

 

Wood a nd M etal

350

  • 25 Store Planning and Design

 

303

POP D esign C hecklist

350

Functions o f t he Store P lanner

 

305

 

Rehabilitations

307

  • 28 Exhibit and Trade Show Design—

 

Floor P lans

307

Industrial Display

353

Drawing t o S cale

308

Types o f E xhibits

354

Materials N eeded t o D raw a F loor P lan

311

Permanent E xhibits

354

Reading a F loor P lan

312

Temporary E xhibits

354

Basic A rchitectural S ymbols

312

Trade S hows

354

Store P lanning S ymbols

314

Traveling E xhibits

355

Other Types o f D imensional D rawings

317

Outdoor E xhibits

355

Store P lanning a s a C areer

317

Planning t he E xhibit

355

 

Audience

355

  • 26 Visual Merchandising and the

 

Subject

356

Changing Face of Retail

 

321

Size

357

Big-Box Store, o r S uperstore

322

Design a nd L ayout: The Traffic P lan

358

  • X V I S U A L

M E R C H A N D I S I N G

A N D

D I S P L A y

Theme

359

Styling

388

Color a nd Texture

359

Party D esign

389

Graphics

359

Special E vents

389

Logos a nd Trademarks

359

Malls

389

Lettering

360

Store P lanning a nd F ixture D esign

389

Supergraphics a nd L ine

360

Display D ecorative M anufacturing

390

Photomurals a nd B lowups

360

Mannequins

390

Heights a nd E levations

360

Point o f Purchase ( POP)

390

Exhibit S ystems

363

Tools f or G etting t he J ob

390

Theft a nd Vandalism C ontrol

363

Résumé

390

Lighting

364

Portfolio

390

Daylight

364

An E ffective V isual M erchandiser

391

Ambient L ighting

364

 

Task L ighting

364

Glossary

394

Special L ighting

366

Credits

414

Special E ffects

366

Index

000

Movement a nd A nimation

367

 

Audiovisuals

367

Live A ction

367

Audience I nvolvement

368

Making t he E xhibit S pecial

368

The A menities

368

Tie-Ins

369

  • 29 Fashion Shows

375

  • 30 Trade Organizations and Sources

379

Major O rganizations

380

Association f or R etail E nvironments ( ARE)

380

National A ssociation o f D isplay I ndustries ( NADI) 380

Planning a nd V isual E ducation Partnership ( PAVE) 380

Retail D esign I nstitute ( RDI)

381

Point-of-Purchase A dvertising I nstitute ( POPAI) 381

In-Store M arketing I nstitute

381

EHI R etail I nstitute

382

Sources o f I nformation a nd I deas

382

Trade S hows

382

Trade M agazines

383

Other Publications

383

Research

383

  • 31 Career Opportunities in Visual Merchandising

387

Trade S how a nd E xhibit D esign

388

Home Fashions a nd F ood Presentation

388

 

E X T E N D E D

C o N T E N T S

  • X I

Preface

s display dead? It has been buried so many times and in so many ways—especially when times are bad—but has been resurrected time and time again and often

  • I with a new name. Whatever you call it, it is about pre-

sentation, about showing to sell—creating a store’s look, promoting an image or a brand, and shaping the shopper’s attitude toward the retailer and the product. Just as the display person became the visual merchan- diser back in the 1970s, we are seeing new names and titles showing up, like merchandise presentation, visual presenter, environmental designer, and so on. Yet, if it is about showing merchandise at its best, in an attractive and attracting manner, it is still visual merchandising and display. The retail scene is in a constant state of change. We are hearing that more and more people are shopping online. We read about and maybe visit e-stores. Does that mean that the retail store as we know it is finished? Does that mean that people are going to give up on getting up, getting dressed, and going out to the store, and instead let their fin- gers do the shopping? Where can they ask themselves, how does this fabric feel? how does this garment fit? What is the ambiance like as you sit in front of the computer? Is there the romance, the sense of discovery one feels at finding a treasure on a rack? What about the surprise and excitement of finding something you never expected to find—and it has been reduced in price as well? How about the chance to meet and visit and exchange style opinions with friends and loved ones? Yes! The computer is convenient and a possible timesaver, but it is not the whole answer. Visual merchandising and display is not dead; it will always live

and flourish—no matter what it is called—so long as shop- pers find it fun and an adventure to go into a retail store. Effective visual merchandising and display can be a moti- vating factor in seeking out such adventure. Old loyalties to stores and shops are almost nonexis- tent because customers can no longer be depended upon. They want to be wooed, courted, stroked, and serviced; they want to be entertained, and each sale is a first sale. If ever something were needed to distinguish one store from another, to make one specialty shop seem more special, more unique, more tuned in to what the market wants— that something is needed now. That something is effective Visual Merchandising and Display. Visual merchandising is the presentation of merchandise at its best; color coor- dinated, accessorized, and self-explanatory. Display is the pizzazz—the theater, the sparkle and shine that surround a presentation of merchandise and make the shopper stop, look, and buy what has been assembled with care and offered with flair. During a recession, depression, or in a financial crunch, store owners may take money out of the display budget and put more money into media advertising. However, televi- sion, radio, and print ads are worthless unless there is some follow-through at the store. Here, at the point of purchase, is where display or merchandise presentation becomes absolutely necessary. The shopping scene is also changing. Malls are becoming entertainment centers, and in cities around the world urban renewal is going on. Downtown, Main Street, High Street, and Broadway are being revived, and new retailers are moving in with new brands to introduce

in their street-facing windows. More and more vehicular traffic is being rerouted, and walking streets are emerging, where shoppers can saunter and study window displays in a leisurely fashion. Store windows are once again becoming show windows and places where retailers can make lasting first impressions. That is what this text is all about: making first impres- sions that last. In the various chapters we approach the ways and means of doing just that. There are no rules to follow and very few “don’ts”; if something works for you, do it, whether it seems right or wrong. In its own way, the text shows you ways to be different, individualistic, unique; how to stand out in the crowd; how to make a lasting impres- sion. But, it always comes down to what is right and fitting for the retailer, the brand, and the product offer. I have tried to make the text as painless as possible— conversational in tone, with lots and lots of pictures from retailers large and small: department stores, boutiques, national chains, and mom-and-pop stores from around the world to provide a feast for your eyes and to stimulate your imaginations. So, sit back, relax, and enter this world of presentation. Enjoy the journey!

A C k n O WLEDGME n T S

In this display world of tinsel, glitter, sparkle, and larger- than-life presentations, I wish to thank all those visual merchandisers, display persons, merchandise presenters, store planners, and display manufacturers and suppliers whose work and imagination made such a deep impres- sion. My thanks to all those for making the merchandise scene more exciting and fun and for putting more enter- tainment into this “show-ing” business.

C R EDITS

I would like to especially thank these architects, designers, store planners, and manufacturers who provided me with the excellent examples used to illustrate this edition. They represent some of the leading retail specialists in the field, and their clients are evident throughout the world. Without their generous contributions, this book would be page after page black-and-white copy only: Aarca Exposiciones, Leon, Mexico; Alma Décor, Warsaw, Poland; Anthem Worldwide, New York; Bergmeyer, Boston; Blocher Blocher

XIV

P R E F A C E

Partners, Stuttgart, Germany; Giorgio Borruso, Marina del Rey, California; Burdifilek, Toronto; Callison-RYA, Seattle; Caulder Moore, Kew, London, UK; Checkland Kindleysides, Leicester, UK; Chute Gerdeman, Cleveland, Ohio; Collaborative Architecture, Mumbai, India; Dalziel + Pow, London, UK; Display Design Group (DDG), Carlstadt, New Jersey; Eventscape, Toronto; David Gault Architect, New York; Gensler, USA; Greenberg Farrow, New York; Wolfgang Gruschwitz, Munich, Germany; Habitat, UK; International Housewares Association, Rosemont, Illinois.; JGA, Southfield, Michigan.; JHP, London, UK; J. Mayer H., Germany; Mancini Duffy, New York; Peter Marino, New York; Nishiwaki Design Group, Tokyo; Pentagram, San Francisco; Plajer & Franz, Berlin; Pompei AD, New York; Seyle Putsure, Los Angeles; Riis Retail Design, Kolding, Denmark; RPA-Fitch; Ruscio Studio, Montreal; Siteworks, Portland, Oregon; Soldier Design, Cambridge, Massachusetts; Charles Sparks & Company, Westchester, Illinois; Sybarite, London; Tobin + Parnes, New York; Walker Group, New York; Winntech, Kansas City, Missouri; WKMC Architects, Dallas; Wonderwall, Tokyo. Also a very special thanks to these visual merchan- disers, display people, and visual presenters, who are adding theater to retailing every day, all around the world: Carlos Aires, at Marketing Jazz, Madrid; Karina Barhumi, Lima, Peru; James Bellante, of Macy’s San Francisco; Christine Belch, at Sony Style, New York; Lucy Ann Bouwman, of Sight, Boston; Polar Buranasatit at Chrisofle, New York; Keith Dillion, at Robert Ellis and Just One LA, Los Angeles; Simon Doonan, at Barneys New York; Étalage B Design, Montreal; Linda Fargo, at Bergdorf Goodman, New York; Ana Fernandes, at The Bay, Toronto; Victor Johnson, at Ann Taylor and White House/Black Market, New York; Amy Meadows, at Marshall Field, Chicago; Gert Mueller, at Schreibmeister, Munich; David New, at Bergdorf Goodman, New York; Laura O’Connor, at Harvey Nichols, UK; Paul Olzewski, at Macy’s Herald Square, New York; Peter Rank, of Deko Rank, Munich; Manoel Renha, at Lord & Taylor, New York; Clinton Ridgeway, at Le Château, Toronto; Shawn Schmidt, at Le Château, Toronto; Stacy Suvino, at Miss Jackson, Tulsa, Oklahoma; Leigh Ann Tischler, at Sony Style, New York; Janet Wardley, at Harvey Nichols, UK; and the thousands of display people and “window

Chapter Four

Light and Lighting

After you h A v e re A d this ch A p ter,

you will be A b le to discuss

F t he relationship between color and light F t he term visible light F t echniques for lighting open-backed windows and closed-back windows F w ays in which lighting can be used to draw shoppers to particular areas within a store F p rimary and secondary store lighting F a dvantages and disadvantages of fluorescent light and incandescent light F l ocations where fluorescent lights are frequently used within a store F u ses and functions of h id lighting and M r 16 and M r 11 lamps F t he effective use of light in visual merchandising

Retailers think of their stock; they think of all the money they have invested; but, unfortunately, they don’t always think about how to show and stock the merchandise they have to sell. They don’t seem to realize how significantly the shopper’s perception of who and what they are reflects on that shopper’s attitude toward the merchandise. Retailers think hard and long about their location: They want a good address; they want to be where the right traffic is; they want to be where their targeted shoppers are. When it comes to stopping the shopper with an initial razzle-dazzle impres- sion, however, the thinking and spending often stop. Just being where the action is does not make a retailer part of that action. The retailer still has to get the shopper’s attention. The cheapest and most effective starting place in get- ting attention and recognition is with good lighting. Good lighting does not have to drain the store’s operating budget. Lighting can be played like a musical instrument; the “tune” that results makes the difference in the shopper’s perception. Without light, there is no color! If there is no color, then there are no sales in fashion merchandise. The first and foremost requisite for a sale is the color and how appealingly that color has been rendered. How the shopper perceives color is very important, and lighting can make red sizzle and shock, make blue appear ethereal or chilly, allow orange to scream or turn into a rich, earthy shade. Lighting also makes the first impression. It is the retailer’s sign and identification.

Lighting the Open-Back Window

If the store has an open-back window, the lighting in the dis- play area up front must be strong enough and bright enough to attract and keep the shopper’s eye from going past the fea- tured merchandise in the display directly into the store on view beyond. The window is not the place for strings of fluo- rescent tubes casting a deadly dull chill over already lifeless mannequins. Fluorescent lighting also casts a flat, dull, and lifeless pall over the colors of the garments. Use only a few sharp spots—incandescent or MR16 miniature low-voltage tungsten halogen (to be discussed later in this chapter)—and focus the light away from the glass—not into the store, but directly down onto the merchandise. (See Figure 4.1.)

At all times avoid lighting up the mannequin’s face. Chest lighting is the preferred technique; it shows off the color of the garment as well as the detailing of the design while softly illuminating the mannequin’s face. If the painted face is viewed in the full glare of the light, it will only point up that it is a lifeless, painted face. The reflected light enhances the mannequin’s mystique and makes it seem more “human.” Place the merchandise as far back into the space as possible so the spotlights can be most effective and not have to battle the natural glare associated with daylight—and traffic lights at night—on the plateglass windows. Just as a single match lit in total darkness can become a beacon, a spotlight in a rela- tively low-lit area becomes a sharp, brilliant point of light. The effect created will all depend upon the contrast. Setting the back panel behind the display as far back as possible and bringing the lights in, away from the window, increases energy efficiency as well. A simple length of fabric of the right color, texture, or pattern, or a combination of these; a screen; a panel of tex- tured wood; or even a cluster of tall plants can serve as a partial background in the open-back window. The color of the divider can either complement the color of the garments or enhance some value of the color. The divider also effec- tively separates the display area from the selling floor and the lighting on that sales floor. By cutting out or minimizing the

Retailers think of their stock; they think of all the money they have invested; but, unfortunately,

Figure 4.1 A series of focusable spots on a track up on the ceiling bring the light down to the product display in this open back window. The movable back panel separates the display area from the rest of the store and from the store lighting, which reduces the ceiling light’s effect on the display. Schreibmeister, Munich. Design:

Gert Mueller.

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store’s light, the window light seems stronger. If a shopper passing by sees the light in the window, he or she will also see the display of merchandise and be aware of the retail space viewed to either side of the partial background. The shopper knows that the store is open; the shopper knows what kind of merchandise is available. If the retailer is enlightened enough, he or she will also add some inter- esting or exciting props—or furniture—to the display, enhancing the image of the merchandise and the store.

Lighting the Closed-Back Window

If the store has an enclosed display window—three walls, a floor, and a ceiling—the display person has greater oppor- tunities for magical lighting effects. Not only can the display person highlight the featured merchandise and bring to it the attention it warrants, but he or she can also use light to “paint” the background a complementary or accenting color or dramatize the setting by creating a particular ambi- ence; for example, blue and green lighting to simulate an underwater look or yellows and oranges mixed with reds to create the atmosphere of a setting sun or a rich day in autumn. Colored lights, colored filters, and theatrical gels all work wonderfully well to achieve these effects. Many theatrical lighting supply stores also carry a variety of cut-out, patterned light filters that create images in light on walls, floors, and even on the merchandise. With these pierced filters, one can have rain, snow, lightening, or sun- shine; light streaming through a Gothic window for a bridal setting; palm trees in the tropics for swimwear; a starlit night for ball gowns; or fireworks for a red, white, and blue pro- motion—or a spectacular sale event. More expensive but also more effective are the filters that rotate around the light, causing movement and animation in the window. Using these techniques requires great control over the daylight that might, at certain times of the day, overpower the window lighting and the special effects. Awnings drawn down during the sunlight hours can help somewhat, but even better is setting the merchandise and the mannequins as far back as possible in the closed-back window to take full advantage of the lighting effects and to overcome the effects of glare and reflection. (See Figure 4.2.)

store’s light, the window light seems stronger. If a shopper passing by sees the light in

Figure 4.2 With an enclosed window, the display person has more opportunities for effective and theatrical lighting. As shown here, the focusable spots are located on a track above the windows, and the lamps can be targeted at the mannequins. Because the windows are fairly deep, there is opportunity for backlighting and the use of illuminated objects. Lord & Taylor, Fifth Avenue, New York.

Incandescent lighting and MR16s, to be discussed later in this chapter, are the most effective sources for window display lighting.

Planning Store Interior Lighting

Now that we know the store is open, let us step inside and see what is to be seen. Light means seeing. Light serves to lead the shopper into and through the store. It directs the shopper’s attention from one featured presentation or clas- sification to another, with stops along the way to appreciate the highlighted focal points and displays. It can separate one area from the next; one boutique or vendor’s shop

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from another. The light level and the “color” (the warmth or coldness) of the light in the store create the ambience. Is it warm, welcoming, and inviting? Is it residential, inti- mate, and comfortable? Is it cool and aloof or just cold and depressing? Is it flat and boring, or does it sparkle with the contrasts of highlights and shadows? A store’s lighting is composed of many different light sources and lamps. It is a “palette” of lamps, of different color variations, intensities, and wattage, and it can also be affected by natural light that comes in through skylights or windows. The store’s lighting plan includes the general, overall illumination of the retail space and also the accents—the highlighters that point out what is new, unique, or special. It can include atmospheric touches, like chandelier, wall, or column sconces or wall and ceiling washers. Although these may not all show off the merchandise, they do show off the attitude of the store. There are also appraisal lights that allow the shopper to examine things like jewelry, fashion accessories, or cosmetics. People, like insects, are attracted to light. It is human nature to walk toward the area where the light is brightest. Thus, a store designer can reconfigure a given floor plan using light. If the plan is long and narrow, a strong light on the far wall makes that wall seem closer and encourages shoppers to head toward the rear of the space. If the long perimeter walls are illuminated, the shopper is better able to see the mass display of the wall stock. Bright lights can be added on the displays or displayers set along the aisle while the aisle itself is kept in low light. Between the well- lit back wall and the highlighted aisle displays, the middle area of the shop or department can function in medium or general lighting. Using light-colored floor materials on the aisles may also make lights on the aisle unnecessary. (See Figures 4.3–4.5.) There are definite “moments of truth” that must be con- sidered in the store’s lighting plan. One of these moments is when the shopper tries on the garment and stands before the mirror. The light that complements the garment should flatter the shopper. The cash/wrap desk presents another such moment. As the shopper sees the selected garment being boxed or bagged and being paid for, the garment must reach out in the fullness and richness of color to reassure the shopper that he or she has made the right decision.

Let us now consider the different types of lights and the lamps that can be used to create an effective and attrac- tive store lighting plan.

New Lighting Trends

Just as home and business lighting changed at the close of the nineteenth century, and electric lights replaced gaslight, further evolution is taking place in this new century. We are finding new sources for light that are more energy effi- cient, lamps that burn longer and brighter, with better color rendition, that are revolutionizing lighting as we knew it. Incandescent lamps are on their way out. They deliver too much heat, use too much energy, and need con- stant maintenance because they burn out too quickly. Fluorescents have long been energy efficient, and now, in a new form, it is possible to screw a fluorescent bulb into a socket meant for an incandescent bulb, and no ballast is needed. These are the compact fluorescent bulbs. The metal halides are still strong contenders for accent- and spotlighting, and here, too, we are seeing great improvements in color rendition and in adaption to systems in use. Lighting solutions are changing daily. Each new issue of architectural and store design publications brings more news about newer and better lighting techniques, fixtures, bulbs, fil- ters, and such. The only way to know “what’s new” and “what’s best” for an installation or lighting plan is to work with a pro- fessional lighting specialist. It is much too confusing for the layperson to do on his or her own. The following is current for today but may be old news by tomorrow, so consider what is mentioned here as recent, but perhaps no longer “now.”

General, or Primary, Lighting

General, or primary, lighting is the allover level of illumi- nation in an area. It is usually the light that fills the selling floor from overhead light fixtures but does not include accent lights, wall washers, and display highlighting lamps. (These are forms of secondary lighting.) Also, it does not include “glamour,” or decorative, lighting: the sconces, counter or table lamps, indirect lighting, and so on.

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Fluorescent Lighting

Some retail operations are illuminated by rows of fluores- cent fixtures that span the length or width of the store. The fluorescent fixture is usually the least expensive and most efficient fixture to use from the point of initial cost, cost of energy, and length of lamp life. Although it is often the popular choice for the contractor to install and the retailer to maintain, it is not always the best choice for many cat- egories of merchandise. Fluorescent lamps can produce a flat, even, and stultifying blanket of light that offers few shadows and provides little depth or textural interest. There are degrees of “warmth” and “coolness” available in fluores- cent lamps, from the rosy quality of “warm white deluxe” to the blue of “cool white deluxe”—with many gradations in between. The merchandise—or the general type of merchan- dise to be presented under the lighting—should be tested under the various types of light bulbs. No one type or

Fluorescent Lighting Some retail operations are illuminated by rows of fluores- cent fixtures that span the

Figure 4.3 A good lighting plan includes many lighting techniques and utilizes a variety of lamps or bulbs. Shown here are recessed floodlights for the ambient light; fluorescents in the raised ceiling area, to wash the focal architectural element; and drop, or pendant, lights to accentuate an area in the rear. Around the Shoes, Tokyo. Design: Nishiwaki Design Group, Tokyo.

Fluorescent Lighting Some retail operations are illuminated by rows of fluores- cent fixtures that span the

Figure 4.4 The red-tinted fluorescent tubes are recessed under the fascia, along the perimeter walls. The tubes wash the upper wall

area and lend a dramatic and sexy look to the space. The floating plastic panel, center, is illuminated with clear fluorescent tubes and, as it looms out from the black painted ceiling, dramatizes the space.

Lipsy, London. Design: JHP Design Consultants, London.

color will enhance everything, but the one that is gener- ally most flattering should be chosen. Some merchandise, like diamonds, silver, kitchen supplies, and maybe even furs, may look scintillating in the brittle light of cool fluorescent, but customers and salespeople may appear drained, haggard, and generally washed out in that same lighting. A sparkling white diamond on black velvet may seem all fire and ice, but it would be hard to sell if the finger onto which a ring is slipped, or the neck that a necklace caresses, looked waxy or marred by blemishes. Therefore, a soft, glowing incandescent lamp, placed near a mirror, will enhance the customer’s skin tones as she looks at herself bejeweled. Even if the diamond itself, at

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that moment, is not super-blue-white gorgeous, the cus- tomer’s appearance while wearing the jewelry is at its best. That’s salesmanship! That’s display! Fluorescent fixtures and lighting can be shielded, filtered, or softened with grids, baffles, or diffusing panels—all to the good. A baffle is any device used to direct, divert, or disseminate light. It can be a louver over a light, an egg crate grid, or even an angled panel that redirects the stream of light. Fluorescent lamps can also be used in showcases or hidden beneath shelves to add the required warmth or coolness that the particular mer- chandise warrants. In any area, a ceiling may be regarded as another wall, or the sixth side of a cube, with the walls comprising four sides, and the floor the fifth. As much as it might be desirable to use different colors of fluorescent in dif- ferent areas, to do so would break the ceiling pattern and call attention to the changes of color overhead. It is advis- able to test and then select a proper mix of perhaps two different color tubes that can be used in the same fixture and provide the best overall colored light for the store. A grid or diffuser will hide the fact that in a single fixture, daylight and warm white tubes are being used in tandem. (See Figure 4.6.)

that moment, is not super-blue-white gorgeous, the cus- tomer’s appearance while wearing the jewelry is at

Figure 4.5 Fluorescent tubes encased in the long frosted-glass- fronted fixtures make a strong pattern against the blacked out ceiling while providing the general, or primary, lighting for this young people’s store. Pencil fluorescent tubes in red plastic sleeves add

to the visual excitement and hectic tempo of the shop. S. Oliver, Berlin. Design: Plajer & Franz Studio, Berlin.

Compact Fluorescent Lamps ( CFL )

With users of electric lights demanding more energy- efficient and longer-lasting bulbs, many companies are now producing compact fluorescent bulbs. These lamps look somewhat like distorted incandescent bulbs and can be screwed into sockets traditionally designed to accept incandescent bulbs. Compact fluorescents can burn for a much longer time and will yield more light for the wattage consumed. These lamps are mostly used for general, ambient lighting, but some will find the color not as warm or pleasant as the incandescent. When using compact fluo- rescents, it is important to make sure you are getting the color of light you want. Often, these screw-in fluorescents are used to retrofit existing ceiling light fixtures and can be combined with HID lamps for accenting.

Incandescent Lighting

This form of illumination is on its way out! With retailers and users of electricity becoming more “green” and looking for more energy-efficient and effective methods of lighting, they have found that the traditional incandescent uses more energy than other lamps; gives off more heat, necessitating the use of additional energy for air cooling; and requires more frequent bulb replacement. Many incandescent bulbs are being phased out of production, and we are looking forward to newer, more efficient, more ecology-favorable lighting devices—some of which are mentioned on the fol- lowing pages. Incandescent spotlights are high voltage lights and are called Parabolic Aluminized Reflector (PAR) bulbs. They can be used as a primary light source but are usually used as secondary lighting. Although these lamps cost more to purchase, they do have a longer lamp life. A PAR bulb can burn for 3,000 hours or longer. An alternative to the PAR bulb is the R, or reflector, bulb, which is lower in wattage (about 150 watts) and made of clear glass, with a metallic reflector surface mounted behind the bulb. Although it costs less to pur- chase than the PAR bulb, the reflector bulb does not burn as long.

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Figure 4.6 Rows of round bulbs are lined up over the runway in the center of

Figure 4.6 Rows of round bulbs are lined up over the runway in the center of this women’s shop and, along with some recessed floods in the cut out circles in the dropped ceiling panel, serve as the primary light source. The spotlights, on tracks that run from the front to the rear of the store, highlight and accentuate the merchandise display on or off of the wall. Lime, Toronto. Design: GHA Design Studios, Montreal.

Figure 4.6 Rows of round bulbs are lined up over the runway in the center of

Figure 4.7 The trend toward blacked out or very dark retail spaces accented only by sharp, bright spots of light is illustrated here. The lighting is almost all accent lighting, with the light on the product and none on the setting. Metal halides are used almost exclusively, except for the fluorescent tubes used to wash the walls of the recessed areas. Levi’s, Berlin. Design: Checkland Kindleysides, London.

Floodlights are also incandescent bulbs, but they usu- ally have frosted glass envelopes, or enclosures, and are less concentrated, having a wider beam spread than spotlights. Incandescent bulbs can be set into recessed high-hat fixtures in the ceiling, clustered in chandeliers, or hung as droplights. They can be mounted into housings that ride back and forth on ceiling tracks and can be directed, or focused, on merchandise or displays. Bare bulbs, silver- bottomed bulbs, 5-inch globelike bulbs, or tiny, round complexion bulbs can be decoratively lined up, clustered, or “polka dotted” on the ceiling to please the eye, add charm to the design scheme, and “stroke” the merchandise. (See Figures 4.6–4.8.)

High-Intensity Discharge ( HID ) Lighting

The HID lamp, which is very energy efficient, is becoming a strong contender in the field of general, overall store lighting, in some cases replacing the fluorescent with its long and readily apparent fixtures. HIDs are relatively small in size (compared with fluorescent lamps) and will, like incandescents, provide shadows and highlights. The mercury-type HID may be too green, the metal- halide-type may appear too blue, and the sodium type is quite yellow, but new developments are producing warmer and more flattering types of light. General Electric’s Multi- Vapor is an improved metal-halide-type lamp that produces a light similar to a standard coolwhite fluorescent, which is satisfactory in some areas. It is still cooler and bluer than an incandescent lamp, however. Ceramalux has a high-pres- sure sodium lamp (HPS), which works well at the warm end of the color wheel, but it is still yellower than an incan- descent lamp. Incandescent spotlighting can be used to accent and highlight with HID overall lighting but may require colored filters (like a pale, “daylite” filter) to go with a MultiVapor arrangement so that the different types of light do not jar each other. The Ceramalux provides a warm ambience and mixes well with warm white deluxe fluorescent or with regular incandescent. However, because HID lamps do

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interiors—like an Abercrombie & Fitch store. The lamps are available in correlated color temperatures ranging from

 

LED ( Light-Emitting Diode )

3,000 to more than 20,000 K (kelvin). With “pulse start” technology, there is improved color rendition, and the K variance is plus or minus 100 K. PAR and Ceramic Compact Metal Halide (CDMT) lamps now produce four times more light than a halogen lamp of the same energy, and it is also possible to control glare and focus better with CDMT lamps because they can be used with reflectors and lenses. As of now, the size of the CDMT lamp makes it difficult to use in some areas, but the lighting companies are working on making the fixtures and reflectors smaller and more adaptable to other uses.

LED is the new kid on the block and one to contend with. It is being heralded and adapted most readily for all sorts of uses. Its small size, long life expectancy, and adaptability make it a popular choice, especially when accessibility to the light source and maintenance are involved. LEDs are solid-state devices that, unlike an incandes- cent, do not require heating of a filament to create light. The electricity passes through a chemical compound that is excited and then generates light. LED lighting requires a circuit board that allows electricity to pass through it at a specified current and voltage. The circuit board also

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Ceramic Metal Halide Lamps

requires the components that allow the LED to operate at voltages such as 12 Vdc, 24 Vdc, or 120 Vdc. General Electric has come up with a new LED module that simplifies LED lighting in directional applications, such

This is a variation on the old mercury vapor lamp. A ceramic tube containing mercury, argon, and metal halides is used, and the electric charge is introduced. The metal halide salts are partially vaporized, and inside the hot plasma, the salts are disassociated into metallic atoms and iodine. The tem- perature within the tube can be greater than 1,200 K. The metallic atoms produce a bluish light that is close to daylight, with a color rendering index (CRI) of 96. It is also possible to get warm-white lamps with a 78 to 82 CRI. Some manufacturers, including General Electric, are pro- ducing ceramic metal halide lamps like the new 23-watt GE ConstantColor CMH Integral PAR38. This lamp provides excellent energy savings and can be used for ambient and display lighting in retail settings. The lamps are available as 10-degree spots, 25-degree floods, and 36-degree wide floods with a warm, 3,000 K color temperature. Eye Lighting International of North Carolina produces

as recessed downlights, tracks, pendants, and sconces. Small and puck shaped, the twist makes it easy to upgrade LED lighting with a simple twist of the module into the socket. The LED’s current popularity is due to its broader life expectancy. It also has no toxic elements. LEDs can last 30,000 to 100,000 hours, compared with incandescents and halogens, which last from 2,500 to 5,000 hours. LED PAR20 floods and spotlights (7 watt) can be used for shop interiors. Color rendition is improving, and colors in the white and blue spectrum are getting brighter and warmer. With its multiple colored light possibilities, LED is being used for creating color effects in wall washing and signage. Some of the benefits associated with LED have been outlined by Environmental Lighting Company, a resource for these lighting products:

a line of Cera Arc ceramic metal halide lamps with 39-, 70-,

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Extremely low power consumption Extremely long life (50,000 to 100,000 hours)

and 150-watt ratings. These feature an R9 value of 90 and a

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Durable and insensitive to vibration

CRI rating of 92—high ratings in the industry. According

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Dimmable and programmable

to the manufacturer, “These values create rich colors, espe-

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Lightweight and compact

cially red, which is the most important color in retailing.”

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Color without the use of filters or lenses

Rated at 3,600 K, the Cera Arc blends well with fluorescents

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No reflectors required to direct light

and, in addition to the brilliant reds, offers great greens,

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Environmentally friendly

blues, and white—all essential in showcasing clothing, jew-

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No mercury or other toxic elements

elry, and flowers.

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Recyclable

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With LED lighting offering so much, and being so new, there will be new advances made daily in the uses and applications of the LED technology for store lighting and point-of-purchase displays and signage. What is important is that LED is cost effective, energy efficient, and “green.”

Secondary, or Accent, Lighting

Flat, shadowless, overall lighting can create a lethargic and boring selling floor. Glare or overly bright, strong light can be irritating and a detriment to selling. Shadows and highlights are necessary; they can delight, intrigue, and pique the imagination. Sparkle and shimmer can stimulate and titillate. A selling floor, and especially a display, needs changes from light to dark, from highlights to shadows. They need flash and sparkle and should make the viewer’s eye travel over the area. Secondary, or accent, lighting should accomplish all this. Secondary lighting devices can be “candlelit” chandeliers, wall sconces that suggest warmth and elegance with only a minimum of actual light, lights on a track that serve to supply extra light where it is needed, and hidden lights that wash a wall with light or color and beckon the customer into the depart- ment for a closer look. Secondary lighting can also diffuse a ledge area with a glow or an aura of light. It can be a spotlight on a display or the light in a case or under a counter. Incandescent bulbs—from tiny bee and twinkle lights, to small, candlelike, or complexion bulbs, and on up to full-sized globe, pear, or reflector-type bulbs—are most fre- quently used for secondary lighting. The long showcase, or “sausage,” lamp is an incandescent that somewhat resembles a small fluorescent tube in shape, but it gives off a warm light and fits, almost invisibly, into display cases or under shelves. When lamps are hidden behind valances or recessed under grids or baffles, and warmer colors are not needed, fluorescent lights may work effectively to provide secondary lighting. However, incandescent secondary lights will add highlights, provide shadows, mold and dimensionalize the merchandise, and flatter the customer’s complexion. Accent or focal lighting not only highlights the product or the group of merchandise, but also makes it stand out from its surroundings. Under the accent light, the color of

the merchandise appears sharper and more brilliant, the textures are defined, and the details are brought into promi- nence. The strong, focused light of the accent lamp can make a product stand out in a highly illuminated selling floor or in a sunlit window. It works most effectively when the sur- rounding area is low-keyed and rather dim so that the accent light seems even more brilliant by contrast. Incandescent spotlights are used as accent or highlighting lamps in the showing and selling areas, in display windows, on platform and ledge displays, and on island setups. (See Figure 4.9.)

Colored Lights and Filters

Just as pigments can be mixed to produce new colors, col- ored lights can be mixed to create new and different color effects. The primary colors of light are red, green (not yellow, as with pigments), and blue. White light can be produced by mixing the three pri- mary colors of light. Red and blue light together will produce a magenta or a purplish red. Blue and green will combine to form cyan or cyan-blue, which is actually a bright blue- green. Red and green create a yellowish or amber light. Thus, the secondary colors of light are magenta, cyan, and amber. (See Figure 4.10.)

With LED lighting offering so much, and being so new, there will be new advances made

Figure 4.9 Chandeliers, wall sconces, lamps, and backlit photo panels are all secondary lighting devices that do not necessarily add much

light to the setting but that do provide a sense of atmosphere. Here, the decorative, custom-designed chandeliers contrast with the stark white walls and ceiling and add to the exotic quality of the boutique.

Zainab, Los Angeles. Design: Seyie Putsure, Seyie Design, Los Angeles.

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The display person should be especially concerned with the mixing of colored light on solid, pigmented
The display person should be especially concerned
with the mixing of colored light on solid, pigmented sur-
faces. This is usually accomplished with colored filters
and gels. A red filter placed over a white light on a white
or light neutral surface will turn that surface red. The red
filter absorbs all the blue and green light waves present in
the white light that is going through the red filter; only the
red wavelengths will pass through to the painted surface. A
blue filter will absorb the red and green wavelengths, pro-
ducing a blue light on the white painted area.
Tables 4.1 and 4.2 show the effects of different colors of
light on various pigment colors. There are, however, many
colored glass filters and plastic gelatins on the market, as well
as shades and tints of these colors, that subtly can add to the
intensity of a color or gently neutralize some of its intensity.
There are all sorts of pinks and blush tones available to
warm up skin tones or suggest a sunset. There are ambers
that go down to pale straw and strained sunlight. A “daylite”
filter is a clear, light blue that will fill in an area with the sug-
gestion of a spring day or will chill shredded Styrofoam with
icy blue shadows. The green gels go from the pastel yellow-
greens to the deep, atmospheric blue-greens, or cyans.
In most cases, lighter tints are used on displays
to enrich the color presentation without appreciably
Figure 4.10 Mixing colored light.
changing the actual color. Strong, deep colors are used to
create atmosphere—the dramatic side or back lighting; for
example, the mood lighting of a window or ledge display.
Deeper-colored lights are mainly reserved for modeling
and shaping the merchandise by adding color to the
shadows and folds as well as by reflecting color from one
surface to another.
t
h is c hart s hows t he e ffects o f c olored l ights o n
p rimary a nd s econdary c olored
Table 4.1
p
igments. F or e xample, a g reen c
o r o n a re d p ainted
s
urface w
urface w
ill t urn t he re d i nto
ill m ake t he g reen a
olored l ight o n a re d f abric
uddy b rown, w hereas a re d
a m
l ight o n a g reen
s
ppear d ark g ray.
Primary Colored Pigments
Secondary Colored Pigments
Red
Blue
Yellow
Green
Orange
Violet
Primary Colored Lights
Red
Blue
G R e en
Brilliant red
Brown-purple
Almost white
Dark gray
Pale orange
Rich wine
Violet
Bright blue
Green
Turquoise
Gray-brown
Blue-violet
Brown
Turquoise
Yellow-green
Bright green
Old gold
Dark gray-green
Secondary Colored Lights
Am B e R
C YA n
mAG e ntA
Orange-red
Gray-brown
Lake or cerise
Dark gray
Pale yellow
Gray-green
Bright orange
Blue-green
Light green
Blue-green
Brown
Ultramarine
Orange
Blue-violet
Bright red
Brown
Deep cold blue
Red-violet
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Table 4.2 t h is  c hart  s hows  t he  e
Table 4.2
t
h is c hart s hows t he e ffects o f d ifferent l amps o n p ainted
c
olors. A s imilar c hange t akes p lace o n s imilarly c olored m
nder t hese v arious l amps.
s urfaces o f v
erchandise d
arious
isplayed
u
Paint Color
Approximate
Reflectance Factor
Incandescent
Warm White
White Fluorescent
Filament
Fluorescent
Cherry re d
Orchid
Plum
.13
Pale orange-red
.4
4
Gray-pink
.0
4
Dark brown
Chestnut b rown
Peach
Orange
Canary y ellow
.19
Gray-brown
.5
8
Light yellowish-pink
.4
4
Pale yellow
.4
4
Greenish-yellow
l i ght y
ellow
.5
8
Medium yellow
l i ght b
lue
.4
6
Weak greenish-blue
m e dium b lue
.23
Purplish-blue
Silver g ray
.97
Brilliant orange-red
Light pink
Deep orange-red
Medium yellowish-brown
Pinkish-yellow
Bright orange
Orange-yellow
Vivid orange-yellow
Light yellowish-green
Blue-green
Light yellow-gray
Pale orange-red
Pale purplish-pink
Dull reddish-brown
Light yellow-brown
Light yellowish-pink
Light orange-yellow
Fair match (sharper)
Medium yellow
Pale grayish-blue
Light gray-blue
Light yellowish-gray
Light brownish-gray
Paint Color
Standard Cool
Daylight Fluorescent
White Filament
Warm White Deluxe
Fluorescent
Cool White Deluxe
Fluorescent
Cherry re d
Orchid
Plum
Chestnut b rown
Peach
Orange
Canary y ellow
l i ght y
ellow
l i ght b
lue
m e dium b lue
Silver g ray
Yellowish-red
Light pink
Light reddish-brown
Light brownish-gray
Very light pink
Light yellow
Light yellow
Light bright yellow
Blue-gray
Light gray-blue
Very light gray
Light red
Good match (grayer)
Deep bluish-purple
Light gray
Fair match (lighter)
Gray-yellow
Fair match
Light greenish-yellow
Fair match (lighter)
Fair match (lighter)
Bluish-gray
Orange-red
Pale pink
Reddish-purple
Dark brown
Light orange
Yellowish-orange
Good match (brighter)
Deep yellow
Grayish-blue
Purple-blue
Yellowish-gray
Good match
Light pink
Darker brown
Good match
Good match (yellower)
Good match
Good match
Bright yellow
Grayish-blue
Reddish-blue
Light gray
 

A word of advice for the display person on the use of light on skin tones—both of mannequins and customers:

Planning Store Lighting

 
 

Green light should be avoided. It plays havoc with the color of cheeks and lips and with blond and red hair, as well as enhancing every skin blemish. Cyan is even worse, although it may work for Halloween or an “out-of-this-world” pre- sentation. Pinks and rose tints are becoming to most skin tones, from the palest white to the darkest browns, and they enhance the warm colors in merchandise. (See Figure 4.11.)

Shoppers respond to light, to the quality of light and the color of light, to the brightness and intensity of light. Light makes the colors of a shop come alive and creates the overall ambience. It leads and directs the shoppers around the selling space and makes them stop to see the highlighted displays or merchandise. Light also forms the shadows that add depth and texture to the retail setting and

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Figure 4.11 Bee lights, neon, and other novelty lights can be added to a lighting plan

Figure 4.11 Bee lights, neon, and other novelty lights can be added to a lighting plan for assorted effects. Here, a green neon strip runs just under the ceiling to effect a tinted wall wash and play up the brick textured wall in the men’s jeans area. In addition, neon signage is decoratively employed throughout this store to designate the shops within the shop and to highlight them with color. River Island, Amsterdam. Design: Dalziel & Pow, London.

to the merchandise. With the great variations in state and city codes, the ever-increasing desire for an upscale image, and the specialization of areas on the selling floor, a trained lighting specialist is required to perform the lighting magic needed to bring the store to life. David A. Mintz, a lighting authority, has lighted more than 40 million square feet of retail space for many of this country’s largest department and specialty stores. According to Mintz, “Perception is what the lighting actually enhances. It is the customer’s perceived attitude toward lighting and merchandise.” Lower levels of illumination usually suggest to the upscale customer better or more expensive merchandise. Retailers too, feel that incandescent light means that softer, finer merchandise is being offered. However, a light level that is too low may not necessarily make a shop look elegant and exclusive; it might just look dull and gloomy. Mintz personally opts for an “upbeat, brighter rather than duller luminosity in

the retail ambience.” In low light, people tend to whisper in hushed tones and move as though they were in a museum. The merchandise becomes untouchable and remote. The shopper can be inhibited, and that’s not good for selling. Properly lighting a store requires a palette of lamps and light sources to create the total effect. It requires incan- descent plus fluorescent lights, tungsten-halogen lamps, and even novelties, like neon strips. According to Mintz, there is no single ideal or best lighting design for a store. There are too many variables: the changing feeling, texture, and look of the merchandise; the location of a department and what type of merchandise it carries; how the adjacent areas or shops relate to one another. The lighting design is also affected by neighboring establishments (especially in malls), the nature of the clientele and their perceptions, the colors and textures that comprise the decorative scheme, and the height and type of ceiling.

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With respect to which light source and types of fixtures are best for a store, Mintz feels that the choice of light source is determined by many considerations, including the mer- chandise, for which there are certain guidelines. Cosmetics areas are almost always lighted with incandescent—warm, glowing, flattering light. Better dresses and gowns and designer shops usually use incandescents, but not always. Menswear areas are often filled with fluorescents for the general light but supplemented with incandescents or low- voltage tungsten-halogen lamps for accents or focal light. The standards, codes, and energy restrictions are all inte- gral elements in the lighting design. The lights and types of lamps can be changed to accommodate these codes and standards. Mintz suggests that visual merchandisers use lamps that will be similar to the light ambience that the objects will ultimately be used in; for example, furs are used out of doors; refrigerators are in kitchens; gowns in incan- descent-lighted rooms. “It’s very important to have different lights from different sources for different looks. The selling space needs variety and interest, but try to minimize the number of lamp types used so that the store will maintain the established light design by replacing burnt-out lamps with the same original lamp for color, light and wattage.” Another light authority, Joseph A. DiBernardo, has been extensively involved in lighting hotels, restaurants, and public spaces and brings a new perspective to the lighting of retail spaces. DiBernardo sees lighting as a vital part of the store’s image. “The department store visit is usu- ally of short duration. It isn’t like you live there or spend many hours there. The lighting has to get the customers immediately, grab their interest, hold their attention, and show them what they should see. “We use accent lights to define selling spaces, or the aisles, and in some cases we may use the accent lights to light up the entire store.” Some shops today are almost completely illuminated by the MR16 low-voltage tungsten- halogen lamps. DiBernardo also feels the fluorescents are a part of retail lighting. How much they are used and how they are used depends on the fashion level or attitude of the store and the type and class of the merchandise. He will use them to light surfaces, to wash walls or ceilings, or for cove lighting. He also likes to keep them recessed and incon- spicuous, and he uses them for indirect lighting.

Store lighting should be flashier and more exciting and stimulating than home lighting. The lighting designer’s job is to create an interesting space rather than simply light up the floor, walls, and fixtures. When lighting a selling floor, there should be variations of light intensity from shop to shop, from area to area, from a low-keyed “living room” ambience to a brilliant, high-tech attitude. The shopper seeks warmth and security, and the smart retailer knows that a customer who looks good in the store mirror will buy the garment. In those areas where the shopper and the gar- ment come together, in front of mirrors, in fitting rooms, in places where the real selling takes place, the lighting is vital and must be carefully balanced between animate and inanimate objects. Lighting is what shows, directs, points out, and makes selling possible. It is part of the store’s image; it shapes the customer’s perception of the store’s fashion attitude and the value of the merchandise being offered. Lighting must be planned and lighting experts and consultants help with the planning.

Suggestions for Using Light Effectively

  • 1. Avoid bright, white lights directly on a mannequin’s face, elbows, or shoes. Save the brightest lights for the merchandise, and avoid anything that will detract from the merchandise.

  • 2. Use colored light to create the right setting for the merchandise. Save it for props and backgrounds. If colored light is used on a garment to intensify the color, stay with the pastel filters: pale pinks for the reds and red-violets, pale straw for the yellows and oranges, daylight blue for the cool colors, and Nile green for the greens.

  • 3. It is more effective to light across a display than directly down on it. Direct downlighting can create unpleasant and unattractive shadows. The upper left light can be directed over to the lower right side of the display; the upper right light is then directed over to the lower left. This creates a crossover of light, a more

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Figure 4.12 To create a more intimate, human-scaled feeling to a space with a high ceiling,

Figure 4.12 To create a more intimate, human-scaled feeling to a space with a high ceiling, designers may paint the ceiling a dark color, drop floating panels down from the ceiling, stretch panels

across the space, or even, as shown here, drop the lighting fixtures. The white boxes with baffled bottoms light up the tabletop displays while adding to the sense of intimacy. Note the dark brown canvas baffles stretched across the shop and the dropped light tracks.

Stark & Whyte, Toronto. Design: Ruscio Studio, Montreal.

even, more diffused light, and nullifies areas in the display space that are too bright or too dark.

  • 4. The lighting in a window display should be checked at night. Many imperfections, such as wrinkles, are more apparent under the artificial light when the softening influence of daylight does not enter the window. Colored lights will also look different when there is no other source of light with which to contend. What may have seemed perfect during the daylight hours at night may appear harsh or garish. It is also advisable to check that the lights are not “flooding over” into the street— into the eyes of passersby and the road traffic.

  • 5. There is nothing particularly attractive about electric wires unless they are meant to be part of the decorative scheme. Find ways to “lose” them—hide and disguise them.

  • 6. Display lights are expensive to use. They use up energy. It is wise to set up a timer device that will automatically turn off all lights sometime during the night after the street traffic has diminished and the store lighting no longer serves any purpose of display

or image. Similarly, sensors that turn on the lights of a display setup when they “sense” the presence of a person nearby can be used to save energy—and as a dramatic plus.

Just as you would seek help from a professional health care provider if you had an ailment, so should you con- sult with a professional lighting designer/planner when it comes to lighting a retail space. The retailer needs help in planning not only the most effective use of energy required by law, but also the best way to use the energy to enhance the merchandise presentation and displays and create the desired image for the store. (See Figures 4.12 and 4.13.) Let there be light: the best light you can afford. This is not the place to economize.

Figure 4.12 To create a more intimate, human-scaled feeling to a space with a high ceiling,

Figure 4.13 Daylight, long kept out of the retail environment, is now making a welcome entrance into stores, and not only through all- glass façades and storefronts—daylight is also coming in through

skylights and glassed-in ceilings. In an effort to cut down on energy costs, designers are going “green” and adding natural light into the lighting plans. Zara, Bratislava, Slovakia. Design: Gruschwitz GmbH, Munich.

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Light and Lighting: Trade Talk baffle h ighlights secondary, or accent, lighting colored lights incandescent light

Light and Lighting: Trade Talk

baffle

h ighlights

secondary, or accent, lighting

colored lights

incandescent light

secondary colors of light

color of an object

l ed

shadows

filters

l ight

spotlights

floodlights

M

r 16 and M r 11

store’s lighting plan

fluorescent light general, or primary, lighting h id

p A r bulbs primary colors of light r , or reflector, bulb

visible light

Light and Lighting: A Recap

F i n an open-back window, the lighting up front must be strong enough to keep the shopper’s eye from going past the display, into the interior of the store.

F i n a closed-back window, the display person can use a range of lighting effects, including colored lights and light filters, to create a more theatrical display.

F th e most effective sources for window display lighting are incandescent lighting and M r 16s.

F w h en planning a store’s interior lighting, a variety of light sources and lamps can be used to create a particular interior lighting “palette” and to draw shoppers to various areas within the store.

F G eneral, or primary, lighting is the overall ceiling light of a selling area. i t does not include the accent or decorative lighting.

F s e condary lighting is the accent and decorative lighting:

chandeliers; sconces; wall washers; indirect lighting; spotlights; and lights under shelves, in cases, and in counters.

F f l uorescent lighting is efficient and relatively inexpensive to install and maintain. th e tubes are available in a wide range of “white” light, from cool bluish to warm white deluxe, which has more of a peach tone. s m aller tubes can be used in showcases, under shelves, and behind baffles as wall washers.

F i n candescent bulbs produce warmer and more flattering light than the fluorescent but emit more heat. th e lamps do not burn as long or as efficiently as the fluorescents. th ey are available in a wide range of sizes, shapes, and wattages. th e lamps can be decorative as well as useful. th e incandescent spotlight is a display “must.”

F th e h id lamp is an efficient and relatively inexpensive light source that is being color improved for use inside the store.

F led s are solid-state devices that do not require heating of a filament. th ey are cost efficient, energy efficient, and green.

F d i fferent light sources can be used on the same selling floor. i t is possible to highlight and accent a fluorescent primary lighting scheme with incandescent secondary lighting.

F w h ite light is composed of a rainbow of colors of different wavelengths, from violet to red.

F th e primary colors of light are red, blue, and green. F th e secondary colors of light are magenta, cyan, and amber.

F A colored filter produces a particular color of light by filtering out or absorbing all the other colors in the white light except the color of the filter or gel.

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Questions for Review and Discussion 1. w h at is the relationship between color and light?

Questions for Review and Discussion

  • 1. w h at is the relationship between color and light? e x plain your answer by detailing the reason why when looking at a red dress, we see red, rather than some other color.

  • 2. w h y can wavelengths of light be seen by humans, but not ultraviolet light, X-rays, gamma rays, infrared light, and radio waves?

  • 3. e x plain how you might plan lighting for a menswear store that is shallow and wide and where a great deal of natural light floods the space.

  • 4. d e fine general, or primary, lighting, and provide examples of this category of lighting.

  • 5. provide examples of the differing effects that various types of l ighting have on merchandise and skin tones.

  • 6. h i ghlight the advantages and disadvantages of incandescent lighting.

  • 7. w h y has it been said that incandescent lights do the “selling” in the store?

  • 8. w h at are the special qualities of h id lighting?

  • 9. w h at types of light sources would you select for a lingerie department or shop? w h y?

    • 10. w h y have M r 16 and M r 11 lamps gained favor in visual merchandising and display?

    • 11. w h at advice would you give to someone regarding the use of colored lights in display?

    • 12. i n selecting the types of lighting and light fixtures for a store, what factors should be taken into consideration?

    • 13. w h ere should the brightest light be focused within a display?

    • 14. w h at adjustments, if any, should be made to the lighting within a display window for day and night?

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Chapter Twenty-Six

Visual Merchandising and the Changing Face of Retail

After you h A v e re A d this ch A p ter,

you will be A b le to discuss

F t hree retail store formats that have been taking an increasing “slice” of the retail pie over the past two decades

F s pecific visual merchandising considerations for a big-box store, or superstore; discount/factory outlet store; and vendor shop

F w ays in which large, hanger-style stores can be “warmed up” through effective store planning and display

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  • d uring much of the twentieth century, most people in the United States shopped in department stores, large specialty stores, and small mom-and-pop stores that usually were geared to local neighbor-

hood trade. The 1950s saw the start and eventual spread of malls and shopping centers and the small specialty chain stores that began to proliferate across the country. It was the late 1960s and early 1970s that ushered in the “boutique” phenomenon: small, specialized shops within a shop that began to show up in the major department stores, targeted at specific markets and age groups. Designer shops also appeared on the better fashion streets in the larger cities as the “prêt-à-porter” concept became a viable opportunity for designers to spread their wares about. Americans have always been brand conscious and responded to names in advertising. With the growth of TV, and more nationally distributed magazines, name brands featured in ads and commercials became a draw when those names appeared in department and speciality stores. People through the ages must have waited for sale events to shop “discount,” though they didn’t know that that was what they were doing. It wasn’t until the 1970s that discount shopping, factory outlet stores, and value- oriented malls became a considered competition to the traditional retail stores. The 1980s were a decade of expansion—and of con- solidation. Speciality stores, like Banana Republic, Gap, Benetton, and The Limited, seemed to pop up in malls and on shopping streets across the country, while department stores were disappearing, changing names and identities. Many mom-and-pop shops and small, independent stores gave up the fight against the spread of the specialty chains. The 1990s has witnessed the growth of a new phe- nomenon: the big-box store, or superstore . In giant, hangar-like constructions of concrete, cement, steel, and glass—covering areas ranging from 20,000 to more than 100,000 square feet—retailers collect a vast assortment of usually one specific kind of product and then turn these monster spaces into category killers —so called because their greater selection and generally better prices (not to mention, easy-to-shop spaces) allow them to “kill off ” the smaller stores carrying that same cat- egory of merchandise.

Another recent addition to the retail format vocabu- lary is the vendor shop. Although the concept of brand name shops within a shop is not new, the recent approach is. Today’s vendor shops are miniatures of the designers’ or brand names’ own retail stores and though located in department and speciality stores, the brand name manufacturer controls how the shop looks and how the merchandise is presented. In this chapter we consider how these new retail con- cepts rely on visual merchandising and display—on the selection of fixtures, graphics, signage, and decoratives to create the desired image for the buying public. Visual mer- chandising and display more than just attracts customers—it keeps them in the store as well.

Big-Box Store, or Superstore

It is all size and selection. These giant retail boxes are often located along main highways and feature bold graphics, signage, and colors on their façades to attract the traffic and invite the shoppers into their open parking lots. Everything here is done to make the shopping expe- rience appear to be easy and fun; the shopper isn’t actually aware of the miles of walking that is involved. Concrete floors may be tiled, there may be areas of carpeting or an occasional wood floor, but mostly the floors are painted in colors to help the shopper move around the space and to define different areas in the store. The open, exposed ceiling is almost always filled with pipes, ducts, and vents that control and carry the electricity, water, heating, and air-conditioning apparatus. Sometimes, the high ceilings are pierced with skylights that allow the natural daylight to mingle with the many sources of artificial light pro- vided to illuminate the space properly. Today’s shopper wants comfort, convenience, and value. The shopper also wants selection, service, and enter- tainment. He or she wants to enjoy the time spent in the store, so the retailer, the architect/designer, the visual mer- chandiser, and the display person have to “warm up” and personalize the vast space into smaller, more comfortable, life-size spaces that have a feeling of intimacy. Also, the retailer’s goal is to prolong the shopper’s stay in the store,

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so the retailer has to provide reasons to stay. Cafés and food courts, interactive displays, video monitors, music, aromas, lighting effects, and places where children can be safely left to play and be amused while the parents are free to shop are some of the best “reasons.” (See Figures 26.1 and 26.2.) The big-boxes are humanized by lifestyle displays on the drive aisles, or major aisles. Drive aisles are main aisles that lead and direct shoppers. These displays feature the mer- chandise that is stocked behind, often on giant industrial fixtures that may reach up 10 to 12 feet from the ground. The merchandise might be home appliances, computers and electronic equipment, home repair, or home fashion accessories. The displays will show compatible pieces of the merchandise arranged in “live-in” settings that often suggest a particular lifestyle. There could be a vignette setting of a sophisticated kitchen for a working couple, a rustic hunting lodge kitchen for a weekend house, or even a kitchen for a person who would rather paint or play an instrument than

cook. These are settings with personality and the vignettes add life, vitality, and color to the warehouse setting as well as humanize the products. In these wide open spaces, signage is very important. From the entrance, the would-be shopper wants to know where to go to find whatever he or she is looking for. It is the oversized signage, and sometimes the giant graphics, that serves as directional guidepost. Color-keyed banners, streamers, and pennants add spice and color as they hang down from the exposed ceiling, and they can also help divide the space into specific areas—all coded by color: for example, blue = home, green = office, red = travel, yellow = entertainment. The on-the-aisle displays and the com- puterized kiosks stop the shopper and reveal the things he or she hadn’t planned to look at or consider. A centrally located and well-identified information or service desk is essential for those who are too impatient or unwilling to read signs or follow fluttering flags.

so the retailer has to provide reasons to stay. Cafés and food courts, interactive displays, video

Figure 26.1 Blacked-out exposed ceilings and lowered ceilings that carry the lighting, clearly defined walk areas, and dramatically lit and well-displayed merchandise define the newer big-box stores. Merchandise displays and focal point presentations make the excursion around these large spaces more of an adventure than a chore. Habitat, Liverpool, United Kingdom.

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Figure 26.2 Category killers must visually reduce their tremendous selection into easy-to-view, easy-to-select, and eye-pleasing areas

Figure 26.2 Category killers must visually reduce their tremendous selection into easy-to-view, easy-to-select, and eye-pleasing areas of merchandise presentation if they are to encourage a shopper to make a selection. In the multilevel Hamleys store on Regent Street, in London, the display team has organized the hundreds of stuffed bears into easy-to-shop clusters and enhanced the setting with the giant tree and the imaginative tree house.

be available to be seen, touched, tested, and tried. Easy-to- read, easy-to-understand signage should be provided near or on the sample product to make it self-explanatory. Here, too, a simple display, a prop, a background panel, a graphic, or a floor pad—whatever—can enhance the product and make it more relevant to the shopper: a wicker basket over- loaded with colorful T-shirts standing next to a washing machine, a stuffed toy dog with a doggie bowl standing and staring at a refrigerator, bags of popcorn and pizza boxes piled up on the floor in front of a TV set, and so on. The big-box phenomenon is now moving into town and taking over old, no-longer-used movie houses, deserted supermarkets, and—quite naturally—unten- anted warehouses. The major problem is providing sufficient parking spaces, especially when shoppers have to pick up and move large, clumsy, and often heavy crates or cartons. Big-box stores are not only for hard goods. The two- and three-story Borders and Barnes & Noble book- stores, for example, have a vast selection of books for all ages and interests, as well as magazines, writing materials, reading-related gifts, CDs, DVDs, and computer software. They seem to have everything and anything anybody would hope to find regarding literature, how-to, hobbies, and entertainment. Here, too, the café/coffee shop has become the add-on “entertainment” factor, along with celebrity appearances. These attractions do prolong visits to the bookstores. In some instances, the café has become the primary reason for the visit, and the book-related purchase is the afterthought.

The lighting in the store must reinforce the displays along the way—highlight them and turn them into focal points that will attract and stop the shopper on his or her way. The graphics should not only set the lifestyle concept for the product, but also help explain how, when, and where the product will work. Some big-box operations have elec- tronic stations near the entrance where shoppers can punch in what they want and be shown, on a monitor, the quickest way to get to the product. Some computerized stations, in the departments, will provide answers to specific questions about the products contained in this area. Although merchandise in the big-box stores is often crated and boxed and stacked ceiling high, samples must

Discount and Factory Outlet Stores

Discount, factory outlet, and value-oriented shopping:

These are buzzwords that get the shopper’s instant atten- tion and are often enough to bring on a shopping spree. These magical terms seem, more and more, to be the “open sesame” to sales. Time- and money-conscious shoppers all have the same goal in mind: they want the best for the least and preferably in the most comfortable and convenient stores.

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Unfortunately, some retailers haven’t learned that just offering merchandise at reduced prices is not enough. The merchandise has to look good; it has to look as though it is worth more. There is a big difference between a dis- counted dress and a distressed, “as is” garment. Showing the discounted merchandise in a cold, sterile warehouse setting doesn’t necessarily work, either. Harsh bright lights, cold fluorescent ceiling tubes, shiny chrome fix- tures, screaming signs, and garish decor do not add stature to the fashion image or the product of the store. They only say, “cheap,” and shoppers are not looking for cheap. They are in search of value. There has been a proliferation of factory outlet malls, centers, and strips across the United States, and the concept is being introduced abroad. It is not unusual in these “value- oriented” shopping clusters to find famous fashion names, like Calvin Klein, Liz Claiborne, Ralph Lauren/Polo, and Anne Klein, or respected, well-advertized brand names, like Timberland, Mikasa, Bass Shoes, Bogner, and London Fog. Shoppers arrive by the carloads; tour busses can be found filling the parking lots like a herd of lumbering elephants as they disgorge thousands of bargain hunters daily. The hunt is on! Often these factory outlet/discount malls will rival the regular malls for ambiance, amenities, and for the comforts and conveniences they provide. These are attractively land- scaped areas, sometimes with interesting themed buildings and a plethora of inexpensive fast foods available in well-lit and well-cared for food courts. The only thing that is “dis- count” is the price of the merchandise. Because many of these individual shops bear illustrious names, as much care, effort, thought, and taste go into the design and merchandise pre- sentation inside as go into the boutique, of the same name, in a department store or on a fashionable shopping street. The materials and detailing may be less elegant or refined, but the shopper is still aware of the fashion attitude—the image behind the name on the front of the retail space. As important as the lighting and the overall design of the shop is the visual presentation. The shoppers who are attracted to these outposts of savings are also looking to save time and conserve energy—as well as money. Although it can sometimes be fun and an adventure to go rummaging through piles of garments heaped indiscriminately atop lopsided tables, it is certainly simpler and less of a hassle to

find the desired color, size, style, and price range in neatly and intelligently organized groupings. Just as these shoppers are likely to frequent upscale malls and better department stores, they expect to see displays showing the garments arranged, accessorized and coordinated, and given dramatic life via dimensional forms and arresting props. Shoppers will understand the absence of chic, of-the-moment man- nequins, but they cannot accept the worn, weary, and wigless forms of a generation ago. Again, simple and smart manne- quin alternatives will do nicely to suggest the body and form and carry off the whole ensemble. Although more energy-efficient and economical fluo- rescent lamps may be used in the lighting plan, the plan should also include the atmospheric and accent lighting necessary for the store’s image and for accentuating the featured merchandise. The display person must always remember to flatter the shopper as he or she tries on a new garment. Within spending or budgetary restrictions, these discount and factory outlet stores are still promoting the fashion images the shopper associates with the designer or the brand name as these images appear in ads in magazines and on TV. (See Figure 26.3.)

Vendor Shops

Levi’s, Coach, Calvin Klein, Liz Claiborne, Ralph Lauren/ Polo, Tommy Hilfiger, and so many other well-known and nationally advertized brand names and fashion designers share a unique situation in retailing today. They are not only the manufacturers and suppliers of the merchandise that carries their names, but they are also the retailers. It is not unusual to see free-standing stores—even superstores— bearing these illustrious names on major fashion streets, sometimes next to stores that also carry those brand name products. Backed up by the image created by their national campaigns on TV, in magazines, and on giant billboards, they have further enhanced their image with a store design and merchandise presentation that becomes as much a part of their design signature as the photos and graphics used in the ads. However, these major suppliers of fashion have in the past and probably will in the future continue to sell their

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products in major department and speciality stores. The brand name/designer supplier has often tried, and not always successfully, to establish its own look and identity within the department where it is located. By featuring the graphics and signage, and the fashion attitude of the line, the supplier tried to promote the brand name by separating this line from the others around it. Today, we find, more and more, small distinctly different “shops” or “boutiques” within a single department, each with its own fixtures and furniture; graphics, signage, and lifestyle imagery; mer- chandise presentation, and sometimes even lighting. We are seeing more of these vendor shops taking over whole departments in stores.

The vendor shop will often be a miniature of the brand name/designer’s freestanding store or will try to recreate, in the limited space, the essence of that retail image. The fix- tures, the lighting, the use of graphics, and merchandising techniques will attempt to establish immediately a conti- nuity with the brand name/designer’s freestanding stores. It is a fully realized shop within a shop, carrying a selection of the brand name/designer’s products. There are excep- tions, but usually the supplier will provide the fixtures and décor for this space, specify the lighting requirements, and also dictate how the merchandise will be visually presented. The retailer (the department or specialty store) yields up some of the precious sales floor space in exchange for the

products in major department and speciality stores. The brand name/designer supplier has often tried, and not

Figure 26.3 The old-time “pipe rack and fluorescent fixtures” company outlet store has been replaced by smart and sophisticated settings more in keeping with the brand and the product. The Cole Haan shop, though minimal in décor and ambiance, bears a resemblance to the taste level of the product, whereas the simple, unpretentious design is a reflection of the discounted price offer. Cole Haan outlet store.

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Figure 26.4 For this Timberland vendor shop, FRCH Design created a selection of tables, floor fixtures,

Figure 26.4 For this Timberland vendor shop, FRCH Design created a selection of tables, floor fixtures, and displayers and a modular wall system so that the pieces could be combined in a variety of ways to show off the Timberland collection. The modularity of the elements

means that the fixtures and graphics can be reconfigured to fit into a space of any size or shape. The graphics and signage units are all part of the vendor’s package to the retailer. The vendor shop is the “ultimate” in point-of-purchase design. Timberland vendor shop. Design: FRCH Design Worldwide, Cincinnati.

national or worldwide advertising campaigns and special promotions sponsored by the brand name/designer. The right mix of brand names in a department can add stature to the store’s fashion image and create a magnet for certain target markets. The brand name can be a bankable asset for the store. (See Figure 26.4.) The new vendor shops are being designed by store designers who are accustomed to working with retail space as a total entity. They are sensitive to the retailer’s image even as they create the specific and signature look for the brand name/designer. The designers create flexible and adaptable modular components that can be integrated into most retail settings. The basic pieces are like building

blocks; they can be added on, subtracted from, rearranged, and changed to suit spaces ranging from 100 square feet to more than 1,000 square feet. Gerald Birnbach, of Retail Design & Display of Granite Falls, New York, notes, “When a retailer willingly gives up some real estate to a brand name marketer, that vendor is also able to display its full range of products in a tailored environment that helps eliminate some of the competition. In return, the vendor participates in the cost of the shop.” These upscale, well-designed, beautifully fixtured shops are, in a way, demanding that retailers live up to the design standards being set by the vendor shops. There are many valid reasons for including vendor shops within

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larger retail stores, but there are problems as well. The big- gest problem is that the retailer is inviting stiff competition into his or her sphere of retailing and opening up how the store’s own lines are being presented in comparison with the slick, professional look of most vendor shops. If the retailer’s lines don’t look as good—or better—then the retailer’s profit line can suffer. The answer is to look to the visual aspects of the business: the store’s design and the lighting; the visual merchandising of the stock; the displays that add interest, image, and personality; and the amenities provided for the customer’s comfort and convenience.

Kiosks and Retail Merchandising Units ( RMUs )

Big-box stores and category killer stores are part of today’s retail scene, but there is also action at the other end of the retail scale. We are seeing small and compact retail stores making an appearance, and some of them are on wheels. They are moveable and can be brought to where the shopper is. Carts have been around since the advent of wheels. All it takes to make a cart is a flat bed, a railing or fence to keep the wares from tumbling off, a pair of wheels, and a vertical post to keep the cart standing upright when not in motion. Today the cart has evolved for more specific uses and become a retail merchandising unit, or RMU. This new hybrid has been appearing with more and more frequency not only in the wide open aisles of malls and shopping cen- ters, but also in air terminals, train stations, movie houses, ballparks, sporting arenas, museums, and a multitude of other public spaces where people can gather and indulge in browsing and shopping for fun. The advantages of the kiosk/RMU are manifold: It is moveable, adaptable, and compact and can go almost any- where and show off almost anything. The unit is readily open for business and just as simply closed up at the end of the business day. What makes it especially important is that in a relatively small space—maybe 5 by 5 feet—it is possible for a startup entrepreneur to test out a con-

larger retail stores, but there are problems as well. The big- gest problem is that the

Figure 26.5 The simplest cart combines a pair of large wheels with legs that will help keep the unit upright when at rest. It is readily moveable and can show merchandise on all four sides. There is even a cash drawer in the compact design. Lighting here would probably be battery operated. Design: Custom Woodcraft, Little Elm, Texas.

cept or a new product and its possibilities for success in the market without having to rent a store and furnish and insure it. Neither does he have to stock much more mer- chandise than needed on an RMU. If the RMU succeeds, the next stop can be a move into an actual retail space. In addition to being an incubator for a concept that can grow and develop, it is also a means of bringing more vis- ibility to an existing brand name or product by having it appear in malls and traffic centers in readily identifi- able and recognizable kiosks. Most ballparks and sporting arenas have souvenir stores where team-endorsed prod- ucts can be purchased, but the management has found that several RMUs spread around the park or arena are

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even more effective in bringing the branded merchandise out to the fans. (See Figure 26.5.) RMUs have found great favor with mall operators. The advantages are many, but the most important one is that RMUs add to the tenant mix and the sense of excitement one feels in a mall where the small, colorful kiosks-on- casters fill the wide, spacious aisles with color, light and a new selection of arts, crafts, and small impulse items. The design of the retail merchandising unit can be individual- ized and specialized for a branded product, or the kiosk can be designed as an integral part of the architecture of the mall—or the ballpark, train station, or museum. Although mall management may dictate the style of the kiosk/RMU it provides to freelance vendors, franchisees, and licensees, it will often have only limited control—mainly size—on the RMUs brought in by national brands that rent floor space in the mall. Jim Allen, of Simon Property Group, one of the largest mall management companies in the United States, says, “The primary method of tailoring the units is through colors, materials and surfaces that are used in the mall. We also tailor the design of the top of the unit to fit in with the property.” According to Tony Horton, a designer of RMUs, “With the focus on successfully presenting merchandise, the wagon wheel (of the cart) was eliminated, and lower shelving was added. Fluorescent lights were replaced with low-voltage halogen fixtures. Kiosks became taller, and identification became more prominent. Support columns were slotted to allow for additional merchandising.” Many of these rolling kiosks feature wraparound shelving and storage areas for additional stock within the space. The usual RMU is 5 by 5 feet in footpad, and most malls restrict the height to between 7 and 9 feet. Thus, the signage on top can be seen from a distance over the heads of the mall strollers. The unit’s superstructure or roof is vital for purposes of identification and recognition. It is here that the designer can add decorative elements and materials to the unit that will tie in with the design of the mall—or the brand’s retail image. It is also here that the all-important lighting is concentrated. The lighting can be in the form of electrified tracks that carry the adjustable lamp holders, or the low-voltage halogen or incandescent lamps may be extended out on brackets to illuminate the merchandise on the unit. Gooseneck fixtures can be used and bent to target

special areas. Sometimes, the superstructure will contain plastic panels that carry the tenant’s name or the brand name, which is illuminated by fluorescent tubes set behind the panels. The internal illumination makes the signage, and the kiosk, even more visible in the mall aisle. With the 5- by 5-foot floor space and the wraparound shelves on the lower portion of the RMU, there is often a central, vertical display area that rises up from the counter height to show off merchandise at eye level. The slotted uprights make shelving and face-out hanging possible. With this format the vendor is usually stationed beside the unit and thus available to serve shoppers on all sides. Some kiosks are designed larger and may take up spaces 5 to 7 feet in width and up to 10 feet in length. In these designs the attendant is often positioned inside the unit and surrounded by counters on four sides, with vertical displays at the ends. These larger units are designed as modules with parts and pieces that can be added or subtracted as needed. There may also be auxiliary units that stand beside the RMU that can, if desired, be incorporated into the unit. Some designs include corner elements that can be moved in where rounded shelves might ordinarily be and used for storage or as cash/wrap surfaces. In those RMUs that have the salesperson surrounded by the modules, usually one section will roll out or slide back to allow the server to get in and out of the unit. (See Figure 26.6.)

even more effective in bringing the branded merchandise out to the fans. (See Figure 26.5.) RMUs

Figure 26.6 The basic RMU, or kiosk, is shown here both with the stock on view and closed up for the night. The doors that close up the unit swing out during business hours, and the grids attached to the doors are used to display product. The lighting is self-contained in the unit. Design: Creations at Dallas, Dallas, Texas.

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Figure 26.7 An RMU with lower shelves on three sides and a cash/ wrap counter that

Figure 26.7 An RMU with lower shelves on three sides and a cash/ wrap counter that fits into the rear of the unit. This kiosk was designed exclusively for the South Park Mall so that there would

be a consistent look to the portable minishops on the main aisles of the mall. Each shop carries the vendor’s name under the mall’s logo.

Design: TL Horton Design, Dallas, Texas.

Figure 26.7 An RMU with lower shelves on three sides and a cash/ wrap counter that

Figure 26.8 This illustration shows the kiosk’s several individual

modular pieces, which can be combined in a variety of ways; it all depends on the size and shape of the space the kiosk/RMU will occupy on the floor and the type of merchandise to be displayed. The central core of four uprights anchors the design, carries the overhead lighting and signage, and can be capped with a “roof,” or ceiling, or slotted to accept brackets or shelves, and so on.

Design: Creations of Dallas, Dallas, Texas.

Although the big wheels are gone, there are casters with stoppers on them to allow the RMU to be moved from area to area. The out-of-door units may be designed with larger casters and greater mobility, as they may be moved more frequently and over greater distances. Security is always a serious consideration in an RMU design. Obviously, the tenant will not be removing all the products nightly, only to restock each morning. As the merchandise needs to be protected when the vendor leaves, the kiosk may feature roll-down canvas covers that can be lashed and locked or wraparound wire mesh guards that “disappear” into a hidden slot during the daytime hours. Some kiosks are

Figure 26.7 An RMU with lower shelves on three sides and a cash/ wrap counter that

Figure 26.9 The RMU goes out to meet the shopper. This unit is part of the out-of-door excitement that is the Fremont Street experience in Las Vegas. The casters on the bottom make this unit easy to move, and the awnings are necessary to shield the shopper and the merchandise from the strong Vegas sunlight. Design: TL Horton Design, Dallas, Texas.

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scraps of wood, metal, cardboard boxes, and cable. All these rescued materials from New York City’s waste stream were reclaimed and reused. In addition, designer-quality clothing racks were fashioned from metal pipes, casters, old beams, and tense cable. Furniture was crafted from discarded cardboard, tossed crates, and repurposed lad- ders. Much of the actual space was original, and the floors and ceilings showed the age of the building. (See Figures

26.10–26.12.)

What made the Nau pop-up unique is that another retailer took over the space shortly after it closed. The new retailer hired Veillet and his Siteworks team to refashion the already-recycled materials into a permanent showroom/ retail store for its natural sleep products. Big retailers like Target are also great believers in the effectiveness of pop-up shops and frequently use them to introduce new designers or lines of merchandise.

scraps of wood, metal, cardboard boxes, and cable. All these rescued materials from New York City’s

Figure 26.12 Discarded pieces of metal and wire, plus inexpensive items purchased out of the limited budget, were recycled once again in a new shop that opened in the same location. Note how the bare bulb fixtures accentuate and decorate the simple wall rack system. Nau, New York.

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Visual Merchandising and the Changing Face of Retail: Trade Talk big-box store, or superstore category killer

Visual Merchandising and the Changing Face of Retail: Trade Talk

big-box store, or superstore category killer discount store

drive aisle factory outlet store mom-and-pop store

pop-up store shop within a shop vendor shop

Visual Merchandising and the Changing Face of Retail: A Recap

F d u ring the twentieth century, retail store formats have evolved from department stores, large specialty stores, and small mom-and-pop shops, to malls and shopping centers, and finally to the emergence of big-box stores, or superstores; discount/ factory outlet stores; and vendor shops. th ese new formats offer new challenges to the display person/visual merchandiser.

F b i g-box stores are giant retail boxes that need to be “warmed up” through layout, lighting, and display techniques into smaller, more comfortable, life-size spaces. l i festyle vignettes are an effective way to personalize a display and lead the shopper into a selection of nearby merchandise.

F l a rge, legible signage or graphics are needed to help shoppers navigate within the big-box stores. s o me stores include electronic or computerized stations that provide directions to merchandise within the store or answers to specific questions about products.

F d i scount and factory outlet stores are oriented to time- and money-conscious shoppers who want the best for the least, but in a store that is still comfortable and convenient. th e store layout, lighting, and merchandise displays here should emphasize “value,” not “cheap.”

F A lthough the emphasis in a discount/factory outlet store is on energy efficiency and economy, atmospheric and accent lighting can be used to supplement fluorescents to create an image for the store, to accentuate featured merchandise, or to flatter the shopper as he or she tries on a garment.

F vendor shops are shops within a shop—retail formats that offer b rand name or designer merchandise in a boutique setting within a larger retail or department store setting. o f ten these shops are miniatures of freestanding designer stores.

F N ew vendor shops are designed to provide a signature look that can be accommodated to various dimensions and settings. Modular components provide the store designer with flexibility, allowing very small or very large spaces to present merchandise in a visually consistent way.

F pop-up shops are design spaces meant to last for a very l imited time. th e 2009 Nau pop-up store, in New yo rk c i ty’s s o ho district, used recycled and repurposed materials in the creation of its temporary space.

Questions for Review and Discussion

  • 1. N ame a specific big-box store or superstore with which you are familiar. h o w does this store use lighting, graphics, signage, or lifestyle displays to enhance the merchandising of its products?

  • 2. w h y would a discount or factory outlet store want to consider ambiance, amenities, and the comfort and convenience of

shoppers in its design and merchandise displays when people who shop in these stores are looking for a less expensive alternative to mall and department stores?

  • 3. l i st the advantages and disadvantages to a brand name supplier/designer of presenting its merchandise in a vendor shop within a larger department or retail store.

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