Icebreaker is an outdoor and performance apparel company that uses ethically-sourced New Zealand merino wool. Its retail locations, including this flagship in Chicago, celebrate the brand story and heritage. Called “TouchLab” to highlight the soft, comfortable feel of merino wool.
The store design relies on storytelling to give a sense of context. Walls lined with images of sheep stations in the Southern Alps and graphics share the history of the people who care for the sheep, while natural materials like poplar wood and raw steel echo the wild and pure geography.
The “Mountain” fixture, a metaphor for New Zealand’s Southern Alps, features stacking modular units that display how to layer Icebreaker apparel. Poplar wood wall fixtures serve as a backdrop for the multi-colored array of apparel. Two large display tables are anchors on the sales floor and help steer the customer flow. Adjacent to the fitting rooms is the community space for perusing books and magazines on a variety of subjects related to the Icebreaker brand and lifestyle, including outdoor adventure travel and sustainable design.
A hierarchical and flexible signage and wayfinding system was designed that is easily integrated into a variety of locations within the wall and floor fixturing. The system defines the product categories through relevant endorsements from industry experts and dynamic photography of the gear in use.