House of Hackney is a luxury British brand that blurs the lines between fashion and interiors.
Since its inception in 2010 the brand has built up a cult following through its list of luxury stockists and online at www.houseofhackney.com. The foundations of the house are built on quality that is made to last along with an emphasis on Made in England, supporting UK industry in the process.
Occupying two floors, the flagship store was to become the embodiment of the brand’s playful, irreverent style, decorated in its trademark statement prints and new collections and featuring its celebrated home wares and fashion designs.
Devised as a series of themed rooms: Garden, Fabric and Fashion, the store features dark furniture in House of Hackney’s signature ‘midnight’ colourway, offsetting highly decorative product. The style is Victoriana with a twist: ornate detailing accentuated by fabrics and wallpapers in vivid prints. Traditional black-and-white tiling contrasts with flamboyant decoration, its changing scale delineating the separate rooms.
In the Fabric Room large-format shelving showcases richly decorative cushions, and wallpaper displayed on hinged panels. Octagonal mirror panelling to the ceiling adds a sense of grandeur that matches the fabrics.
In the centre of the Fashion Room, a grand ‘conversation seat’ lends an opulent salon feel, providing waiting space near the fitting rooms, featuring ‘Hackney Empire Stripe’ paper and curtains. A double-height space at the rear uses signature ‘Hackney Empire’ wallpaper, adding a sense of theatre as customers take the spiral staircase to the lower floor.
On reaching the Furniture Showroom on the lower floor, visitors are immersed in a series of room sets. A traditional foundation of faux fireplace, parquet floor and panelling contrasts with a grid system overhead enabling the creation of flexible display space, where screens can be moved to form different ‘rooms’.
A key challenge was the layout of the store - a narrow street frontage shared with the offices above allowed only a small window display, and entry to the store was via a series of steps. The store's street presence was maximized with an eye-catching awning, featuring House of Hackney’s ‘Hackney Empire’ print, creating the ambience of a traditional storefront. Above this, the House of Hackney logo is picked out in delicate gold lettering, mounted on the existing stone fascia panel.
Spilling down the steps and on to the street, an array of fresh flowers and plants draws customers into store via the Garden Room, making the most of what is an awkward space in retail terms. Space is set aside for florists to make up bouquets – with a butler’s sink and brass taps – adding activity to the front area of the shop.
Being a young business, House of Hackney wanted to create maximum impact for a minimum outlay. This was realised by creating simple furniture, designed to be built on site using everyday materials, which were then painted in 'Midnight' to add drama and contrast with House of Hackney's vibrant designs.
Words: 2014 London Design Awards