Sunday, August 28, 2005

Evaluation of a Designed Environment

The Watch Station & Sunglasses Hut
International is a rare example of harmonized duality in a retail environment. The two respective trades are joined under one roof with a use of a witty interplay of contrasting elements that make up the brand’s visual components. The established oppositions such as squares and circles, complementary colors, thicks and thins, that have been a part of the visual language for centuries, are employed to coexist harmoniously, subtly accenting the distinction between the wares.
The store occupies a rather limited area measuring roughly 8x10 meters divided in such a way as to produce two smaller rooms of 5x8, lined with shelves and various display cases. Each room is dedicated to its particular product line, and the two are connected by a broad portal. The main colors used in the decoration of the store are soft pastel versions of blue and yellow, cleverly placed together to produce a sense of moderate excitement. The two colors can be found in the identity marks, wall treatment, posters, display cases and promotional material. Yet, at the extent of their proliferation, they never become bothersome or overbearing. This subtlety can be found in most aspects of the design, it is in the modest texturing of the walls, the understated shifts of the wooden floor tiles, the simple but elegant san-serif typography. The limitations of space are also turned to be used for the benefit of the store. It combats the cold dehumanizing nature of the modernistic style. The environment is naturally proportioned to the human body, neither humbling, nor elevating the visitor.Overall, the designers succeeded in creating a singular identity for a dual brand.

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