Checkland Kindleysides has revamped its own original interior design for Levi’s concept store Cinch, which reopens this week in London’s Soho.
Cinch is an ‘icon’ retail outlet to showcase premium products and innovate within the marketplace, says Levi’s store design manager Henry Barnes.
Barnes adds, ‘The [Cinch] store has been around for a period of time and [its] differentiation has melted away as other retailers have caught up. We wanted to go back to our core values of authenticity, originality, integrity and craftmanship. With design, there was an opportunity to go further [forward].’
Cinch is positioned more like a small independent retailer with a gallery or exhibition space integrated within the store that can be used to show work by emerging artists, designers and photographers.
Checkland Kindleysides managing director Jeff Kindleysides adds, ‘The space is not overtly branded, but ownable in other ways that go right to the heart of the Levi’s brand. Instead of a shopfitting system, we visualised a red thread running right through the store, which draws on the brand’s heritage and is key to the product and how it’s made.’
The ‘thread’ is set off from the wall to allow for exhibition hangings, but also serves as a handrail and connects the upper and lower floors as an aid to circulation and navigation, says Kindleysides.
A section of the floor has been cut away and shoppers can see through a red-lit porthole to the lower floor. Tension cables run across the window to display the product.
The consultancy created the original Cinch design in 1999.
Checkland Kindleysides, which won the work without a pitch, is Levi’s retained retail consultancy in the UK and Europe.
Design director Jason West led the project with senior designer Guy Tabberer and designer Russell Ashdown.