Issue #102

Megan Hotson


Welcome to your weekly dose of TooXToo, this week featuring Burberry’s new Paris Flagship, IKEA’s smaller format stores, Benetton’s mixed media Milan store, and the Bcorp pop-up in London…

Burberry’s new Paris flagship

Fashion house Burberry has unveiled their new Christo-style plaid wrapping flagship in Paris. The store can be located on an aspirational street corner of Rue Saint-Honoré, enhancing the already- coveted shopping Mecca in Paris.

The new space spans 4 floors and it’s interior is decorated with the brands key colours: black, beige, white and tart red. Key features include the private apartment on the top floor for any key clients, and VIPS- as well as the luxurious Women’s department on the third floor. Eye-catching design elements are to be seen everywhere- from the mirrored ceilings with intersecting metallic grids to the tiled chequerboard floors.

“The store represents all that we stand for as a brand – being authentic, bold and creative – and we look forward to inspiring our customers with a truly elevated British luxury experience in this iconic setting,” commented Gianluca Flore, chief commercial officer.

This decadent flagship is the first free-standing store in this region to feature Burberry’s new global design concept, it also pays homage to the brands celebrated history within the French capital.

The opening and launch of the store saw the brands new birch brown check projected onto a collection of iconic Paris landmarks, as well as check-covered London taxis toured the French capital.

IKEA’s first smaller format store

IKEA has opened its first smaller format store in the UK; the space is a quarter of the size of their usual stores and aims to focus on accessories and access to IKEA’s holistic offer, and services.

The new, and smaller store is located on Hammersmith's King Street and has been primarily designed for busy city-dwelling shoppers – part of IKEA’s new ‘Livit’ mall. King Street’s new resident is to be another step in IKEA’s long-term transformation to become more accessible and convenient by closing the gap between IKEA and where customers shop, live and socialise.

Country Retail Manager and Chief Sustainability Officer, IKEA UK & Ireland, Peter Jelkeby described the thinking behind this latest venture: “Everything we do starts with our customers. Over the next three years, we will continue to transform as we respond to their needs and dreams, today and tomorrow.”

As aforementioned, the smaller format store prioritises accessibility. This is made clear by the considered design of the space which reflect the needs of city-centre shoppers. For example – the store will be entirely cashless, featuring only self-serve checkouts with three entrances and exits. The newly featured ‘Swedish Deli’, will be located at the edge of the store, will also open an hour before the store opens- allowing those in the local community, and busy commuters, to ‘grab and go’.

The location also reflects accessibility- close by to four tube lines and 68 bus routes, thereby reducing customers’ reliance on private transport. It is also in a vibrant destination where people live, work, socialise and shop.

IKEA are clearly responding to the broad and flexing demographic of their consumers – from outer city locations to this smaller store city format, they are keeping up with busier lifestyles that demand convenience and accessibility.

Benetton’s mixed media Milan store

Benetton Group has transformed their Milan store into a mixed-media space to celebrate Milan fashion week. The experience is a prequel to their soon-to-be-unveiled Metaverse store.

Benetton are just one of many other fashion brands that have recognised the potential of the metaverse for the future of fashion. The (pink-painted) concept was born out of Benetton’s desire to curate “a brand experience that is increasingly immersive and, above all, in tune with the language of young people.”

Benetton encouraged their customers to participate in the gaming experiences in-store, which allowed them to accumulate QR codes that they could use to make purchases in the retailer’s physical shops. Harnessing an omni-channel approach in the creation of this space has forged an additional touchpoint with the consumer as the virtual store will open at the same time with the same experiential look and feel.     

Benetton cleverly connected multiple elements to forge a space that was neither physical, nor digital – combining a fashion event, a real life store location, and a futuristic digital experience bringing something new to their brand and consumers.

B-Corp’s London pop-up

To celebrate #B-Corp month (March 1st-31st), B-Corp have opened their first ever UK retail pop-up in the heart of London. Rathbone place is – albeit temporarily, home to a new space that is dedicated to showcasing the B-Corp community’s products and values.

This retail pop up is aimed at making it easier for consumers to shop, learn, and drive change through daily decision making. The space is not about purchasing – B-Corp have shifted their retail focus from profit to purpose, you can’t buy any products in this store, only learn more about them and grow your awareness of the movement.

The store, coined “Good News” features a free of charge vending machine from ‘Healthy Nibbles’ that uses social media as it’s currency. Alongside this, a pay phone that links to a hotline to Freud's offering free PR advice.

B-Corp are retailing products in an unconventional sense by telling stories about how they are driving change, not sales. Shining a light on products that have “sustainability and community” at their core allows B-Corp to raise awareness of brands committed to having a positive impact.

Read Next