Retail Focus Online
Volume 5 - 2012 One cannot be forever innovating. I want to create classics. -- Coco Chanel
Ken Nisch
Trending Now: Vintage By Ken Nisch - Chairman, JGA

Call it vintage, retro, or mid-century modern, but eclectically combining looks adds personality and humor with a twist of sophistication to fashion and luxury environments. Turning its back on sterile, Euro, and futuristic (although all of these can be retro in its own way as well), it's a design idiom that American retailers, and might I add, American retail designers, are particularly adept at... only fitting as the creators and promoters of all things popular culture.

Vintage is Green
Vintage, is also often green. Green because it involves reusing, repurposing, and finding new value out of the discarded and the unwanted. Vintage, however, is not always about flea market and almost never about the economy or saving money as the thought, selection, and often sourcing of vintage takes even a better eye, a flexibility within a big picture design perspective and the willingness (and therefore often the advantage) of a more "bespoke" approach to creating a collection of retail experiences versus a cookie-cutter chain. Without this good eye, vintage can very quickly descend into kitsch, creating the typical fast, casual design result of "archiflage" (architecture+camouflage) where everything is tossed up, sticks on the wall, without a sense of storytelling, editing, and selection.

Vintage is Diversity
Vintage can also take on many personalities. It can be masculine, industrial, workman like, but it can also communicate a flavor of boutique, boudoir, and romance. Vintage can be about decadence, lost civilizations, and the hubris of revolutions, or it can bring together a sensibility that appeals more to the "ex-hippy, granola crowd" than the "stay-awake all night and party" crowd.

Vintage Is Boundless
One of the interesting challenges of vintage is one that comes in the words of Yogi Berra, "So popular that no one goes there anymore." We have seen certain elements of vintage, the ubiquitous crystal chandeliers in cheap-chic chain stores, the un-matched sets of nesting tables, all of which create a superficial sense of faux vintage or what might be characterized as "vintage-lite." When the found becomes the manufactured, the true vintage crowd moves on and finds new veins of gold to mine.

Vintage knows no bounds, but it will be about the found, the un-loved becoming loved, and the good eye that finds the pearls among the swine.


An excerpt of this article can be found featured in a trend feature from DDI Magazine.
Tacori: A Jewel of an Exhibit
The new Tacori Boutique is the personification of modern luxury, and becomes the next generation of the Tacori "Blue Carpet Experience." Unveiled at JCK Las Vegas, the premier jewelry exhibition and conference; this new concept debuted on June 1st. Designed by JGA, the Tacori Experience can be executed across a variety of touchpoints including shop-in-shop, showroom, and tradeshow. This tradeshow exhibit contains key fixtures of the shop-in-shop experience, including feature fixtures, wall vitrines, island, linear, and customer contact tables and furniture. This first iteration was created as a temporary pop-up for the JCK Tradeshow.

In addition to the base concept elements, the nature of the tradeshow itself required the ability to view and experience these elements within the booth, but to do so through a series of scrim and divider elements that tease the passerby, but as well, protect the privacy of discretion of the buying and ordering customer. Company president, Paul Tacorian, commented, "We wanted to create a comfortable, yet luxe, experience for our clientele - something that truly represents our design details and company philosophy - and the Tacori Boutique does this beautifully."

Key finishes include high gloss lacquer, crystal, cobalt blue lacquer walls highlighted with vintage frames, and faux architectural and graphic elements that on one hand added to the luxury and sense of tradition and stability of the brand, but on the other, exuded the indulgence, artisanal and spirited character of the brand as well. Augmented by a conference space and lounge area that mixes the opulent and vintage with the mid-century; the space is both youthful, as well as timeless. Guests of the Boutique noticed the "Tacori touch" in every aspect they encountered - from the touchpoints of "Tacori Blue" throughout, to the high-gloss framework encasing iconic brand images, to the specially-crafted leg details on the cabinetry. Guests agreed, the Boutique was distinctively "Tacori" in every sense of the brand.
Passion Code
Hot Off the Press: Passion Code - Jewelry Store Design
The latest book from Designer Books in China is Passion Code. The 300+ page coffee table book presents the best of jewelry store design from around the globe. It includes JGA's Ultra Diamonds store design, whose new environment is chic, unexpected and accessible, recognizing the breadth of selection, categories and designers that are core to this broad and diverse collection. With fresh merchandise arriving daily, this ever-changing selection provides the Ultra Diamonds customer with the means to satisfy their taste for luxury and value, featuring items perfect for self-purchase or gifting. For more on the book, click here. Or for more on Ultra Diamonds, click here.
In The News
DDI Magazine: Five Tips for a Successful Interview
This month, DDI Magazine launched their Student Center page at DDI Online. Among the features is a five-point editorial by JGA Chairman, Ken Nisch, detailing the steps every student should take to prepare for an interview. Among Ken's hints, "Be Prepared, Ask Questions and Be Personable;" great advice for the novice or more established candidate. To read more, click here.

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