New Store Openings New Concepts Cool Hunting Trend Report

Courtesy of Josh Rubin Inc, Cool Hunting

Retail Report Men’s, Women’s, Home, Design: “Given the current economic climate (and the grim predictions concerning consumer spending freezes), it seems pretty risky for any new retail venture…” Here are several, who are catering to a targeted niche or melding concepts to brave the new realities at retail. Presented on WeConnectFashion, courtesy of Cool Hunting, an edited source, with a distinct point-of-view.

Oxygen Boutique


Fusing together art and fashion, the mother-daughter team at Oxygen in London are part of the growing retail trend that’s part gallery space, part boutique.

Growing up the daughter of a discerning fashion buyer, Joanna Nicola developed an eye for new talent and refined attire at a young age. Her talent is evident in the shop’s collection of sleek dresses and stylish ensembles, all currently gathered neatly below photos from fashion photographer Erik Madigan Heck. Having shot the looks for major players such as Lanvin, Rodarte and Helmut Lang, the exhibition of his images blends seamlessly with Oxygen’s carefully curated collection of discreet labels and progressive designers like Herve Leger and Brian Reyes.

While the artwork may rotate, one thing remains the same-Oxygen is a place to find classy duds from brilliant designers, many of which Oxygen stocks exclusively in the U.K., like master of soft tailoring, Doo.Ri. Only recently opened, the boutique is already making waves and securing its place as one of London’s premier shops. by Karen Day

Oxygen 38 Eastcastle Street London W1W 8DS

The Green Depot


The much-anticipated Green Depot finally opened its doors three weeks ago on Manhattan’s Bowery. Given the current economic climate (and the grim predictions concerning consumer spending freezes), it seems pretty risky for any new retail venture start up, but environmentally-focused stores/products seem to be one of the few exceptions. Reuters recently reported that despite the despite the recession, four out of five Americans are still buying green-even at sometimes higher costs.

Amongst the usual cleaning supplies, energy-efficient light bulbs and low-VOC paints, we spied some seriously fresh furnishings, especially in the lamps and fixtures department. The Nest Pendant Lamp, made by XY Decor, is a beautiful tangle of shaved maple strips (also available in walnut), while the Florid Pendant Lamp utilizes the same materials for an altogether different effect with the wood strips undulating in and out like delicate ribbons. by Laura Neilson, Cool Hunting Contributor

The Green Depot 222 Bowery New York, NY 10012

Droog New York Store


Joining the design elite on Soho’s Greene Street, droog opened their multi-story NYC showroom, shop and exhibition space yesterday. Dutch designers Studio Makkink & Bey lent a hand with the interior, a space that blurs the lines between objects, store fittings and architecture with its House of Blue concept, which allows customers the opportunity to purchase parts or fixtures, like a working chimney, and even have it made to fit and function in their own home.

The 5,000 square foot space is the first stateside location for the Amsterdam-based design group, whose only other brick-and-mortar shop is in Tokyo. True to droog ethos, all three offering up a unique shopping experience.


Founded in 1993, droog has helped to launch the careers of many designers as well as shape the way people think about design itself with their innovative products and progressive approaches. by Karen Day

droog New York 76 Greene Street New York, NY 10012

Linhardt Design Studio


Tucked between a check cashing service and a vacant lot on First Avenue in New York’s East Village is a tiny storefront with funny hours. Sometimes closed at noon and occasionally rocking out past midnight, it’s a sure sign that Linhardt isn’t your typical jewelry store. Owner Lisa Linhardt is a jack-of-all-trades when it comes to design, with a resume listing photography, graphic design, metalsmithing and more-her liberal approach harmonizes well with the inventive interior executed by duo Wary Meyers.

The shop’s wares are all handmade and sustainable, incorporating materials like cork, recycled platinum and gold, the Colombian tagau nut and horn collected after being shed by the animal (pictured below). Lisa designs and crafts most of the jewelry in a workshop behind the shop, but also offers select pieces by national and international designers with a similar mission and aesthetic. Most are fairly under-the-radar, though Spanish jewelry designer Raquel Moreno is also stocked at Bendel.


Ready-to-wear pieces are squarely affordable-knick-knacks start around $40 while the most expensive necklace tops out at $400. Also, Linhardt is a one-stop shop, as Lisa does a brisk business in custom orders for those looking to go the extra mile. Engagement rings designed using ethically-sourced gems are popular. by Kelswey Keith, Cool Hunting Contributor

linhardt design studio 156 First Avenue East Village, New York 10009

We Love Magazine Library


Whether you’re looking for an out-of-print vintage edition or feel like browsing the pages of the publishing world’s fine examples of glossy glory, Tokyo’s new We Love Magazine Library has something for every stripe of magazine junkie. The library/exhibit features magazines from around the world, and covers everything from fashion, culture, design, photography, art, architecture-name it, it’s there. Feel free to peruse the massive collection of magazines or if you find one that really fits your fancy you can easily subscribe at the subscription and information counter. by Karen Day

We Love Magazine Library Through 14 March 2009 B3F Space O at Omotesando Hills Tokyo, Japan

Thanks are in order to Cool Hunting who has been supplying WeConnectFashion Editors with trend doses since 2003. Be sure to check out Cool Hunting’s Fashion segment.