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RIXO and Karndean Designflooring Collaborate to Create Stylish Carnaby Street Store

LONDON’s Carnaby Street is famous worldwide as home to Britain’s most iconic names in fashion and popular culture, so when progressive fashion brand RIXO paired up with Karndean Designflooring to design its latest store the result was ‘always going to be effortlessly stylish and elegant’.

One of the coolest destinations associated with ‘60s London, Carnaby Street was, and still remains, the epicentre of culture and lifestyle, from groundbreaking fashion brands such as Mary Quant, Vivienne Westwood and Cranks vegetarian restaurant to underground music bars which hosted future stars including The Who and The Rolling Stones.

RIXO’s desirable vintage inspired one-off pieces pay homage to these trailblazing pioneers with a look that’s in vogue yet also a future classic.

Designed to be easy-to-wear and inclusive, each item features a fusion of original hand-painted prints and flattering silhouettes to inspire confidence.

Following several pop-up stores in the area, RIXO’s new Carnaby Street store offers a welcoming environment and the tailored experience today’s discerning customers are looking for. Committed to sustainability and an ethical supply chain, RIXO opted to work with local design studio Cúpla and Karndean, a family-run British brand now celebrating its 50th anniversary in the flooring industry.

Gemma Munday, retail growth manager at RIXO, said: ‘We like every store to be highly individual. As our clothing designs are inspired by vintage fashions, so all our stores have unique artwork and fixtures that tell its own story. The aim for our Carnaby Street store was to create a grown-up feel with an empowering interior that would reflect our vintage inspiration yet also allow the personality of our clothes to shine. We looked for luxury fixtures that would give us a high-end finish and a bespoke yet understated look.’

The store beautifully captures the atmospheric glamour of the ‘60s and ‘70s and combines this with contemporary trends and an eye for detail. A calming pared back palette of cool off-white is contrasted against rich deep blues and warm wood design panelling and flooring.

Says Karndean: ‘Pearl Oak from Karndean’s LooseLay Longboard range balances the boutique’s light and dark tones, reflecting traditional timber flooring and the modern preference for light neutral tones. The extra-long planks have been laid at an angle for a sense of flow that can guide customers around the store.

‘The brand’s vintage inspiration is reflected in a bespoke circular statement chandelier, which sits above a white marble table and a rug in RIXO’s signature leopard print. Completing the sophisticated look are unobtrusive brass display rails which set off the colourful clothing to perfection.’

Fleur Carson, commercial sales director at Karndean Designflooring, said: ‘Experience is of the upmost importance when it comes to retail, particularly at the high end of the market. In light of the disruption of the pandemic and today’s economic challenges, resilient brands are adapting to offer consumers a personalised service. A comfortable instore environment is key to encouraging customers back into the physical store, with a natural feel and durable materials that can cope with high traffic.

‘The timeless design and light organic tones of the Pearl Oak flooring creates a clean backdrop, allowing all attention to be focused on the clothing displays. Designed to authentically replicate the beauty of European oak, Pearl Oak features light pinky-beige tones, distressed grain details and a lightly brushed surface texture. The looselay format is a highly practical choice for retail premises with a durable, quiet and scratch resistant surface. Should damage occur it’s quick and easy to make repairs by simply lifting and replacing individual planks as required.’

Gemma Munday added: ‘We’d previously chosen Pearl Oak for our head office so we knew this would be a great choice. It’s really hardwearing and the pre-attached acoustic layer significantly reduces noise. The floor is a beautiful addition to the fixtures and furnishings and pulls the different elements together. We want everyone to feel welcome, even including dogs, so the fact Karndean flooring is durable enough for pets was an extra attraction!’

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