Art Meets Commerce at Sass & Bide’s First International Flagship-------
Soho is officially experiencing an Aussie takeover. Last night, Zimmerman fêted its new Mercer Street store, and today, Sass & Bide opened the doors to its first international flagship around the corner, at 480 Broome Street. According Heidi Middleton, who co-founded S&B with Sarah-Jane Clarke, “It was a feeling—or an energy—that really pulled us back to New York.” (It’s worth noting that, in September, the brand brought its show back to New York fashion week after a five-year stint on London’s runways.) “We have strong sales in the U.S. and thought it was about time that New Yorkers got to experience the brand in a retail environment. We want our customers to really feel the spirit of the brand from the moment they walk in the store,” Middleton continued. The S&B team worked with architect Kelvin Ho and Brooklyn-based design collective Guild to realize their ideas for the 2,000-square-foot space, which was previously an art gallery. “The concept was based on four key elements: beauty, strength, modernity, and spirit,” Middleton said. They brought that vision to life by creating a tree-like sculpture that winds throughout the shop. It was inspired by the pieces of natural driftwood that Middleton collects, and was constructed from sheets of cloth dipped in resin that were mounted on fiberglass and then painted white. The sinuous sculpture ties together the stark room and provides an elegant backdrop for the racks of clothing (the label also developed several styles exclusive to New York) and cubbies stacked with jeans. “We’ve created a space that captures who we are,” Middleton said.