42 | www.retailenvironments.org RETAIL ENVIRONMENTS january.february.2015
and inviting personality. The addition of
this event brought a bit of star power to the
Retail Design Collective.
Showroom parties, always a favorite among attendees, did not disappoint.
Attendees caught up with peers, clients,
and vendors while enjoying sponsors’
hospitality, including a string quartet at
Global Visual Group.
Abundance of visual artistry
In addition to the season’s new visual
merchandising and store interior products, the city’s holiday windows are always
a source of inspiration. Helping attendees
absorb it was A.R.E. partner Windows Wear
PRO, whose two-hour guided tour gave
behind-the-scenes details about elaborate
window productions at Macy’s, Saks, Lord
& Taylor, Bergdorf Goodman, Barneys New
York, and Bloomingdale’s. Barneys featured
live performances in two of its windows,
while Bloomingdale’s incorporated technology to connect with Millennials and
other window shoppers. All of the windows
demonstrated the artistry and creative
genius that continues to attract people
from around the world.
Glimpse of retail to come
The show’s educational sessions, held at
the Metropolitan Pavilion, offered insights
into tomorrow’s stores. A few highlights:
• 29% of young people will walk out of
a store if it has no wifi.
• Savvy retailers tout something new
online and put it in their brick-and-mortar
stores the same day.
• The wave of the future in-store is
“tactile digital experiences”—experiences
initiated by physical touch but breaching
the four walls of space in a way that can’t be
• Black Friday has reached across the
pond, taking the U.K. by storm. One shop
sold 700 Nike trainers in a single day.
• Landlords are cutting the duration
of leases from 10 years to five (
unfortunate news for projects seeking LEED
• Strategic alliances with local organizations bring a sense of community to a store.
• Conversely, bringing a taste of a brand’s
hometown to outlying stores can have
exotic appeal to locals.
• “Conscious consumerism,” the belief
that every purchase made expresses one’s
beliefs, is on the rise.
• Textural elements are particularly
needed in stores today to contrast with
consumers’ typical routine of living their
lives “through glass” (device screens).
• The popularity of educational events
in-store is expected to grow (e.g., cooking
demonstrations in a cookware store).
• Graphic imagery was the most popular window display trend worldwide, followed by flowers and plants, according to
Windows Wear PRO data.
• Interactivity is still rare. Fewer than
2% of retailers followed by Windows Wear
PRO incorporated any interactive elements
into their window displays during 2014.
• For 2015, look for more eco-friendly
materials in windows. Theatrics, interactivity, and taller mannequins as well as
mannequins with texture also are expected
to be more widespread.
The total package
The show’s package of inspiration, education, and networking offered participants
an unparalleled opportunity to plan for