Sports-Luxe: Kith x Snarkitecture
US premium sportswear label Kith has collaborated with Brooklyn-based product designers/architects Snarkitecture on an impressive, art-infused design for the 3,000 sq ft expansion of its NoHo site in New York. The project affirms the growing power of the athleisure opportunity – the booming crossover between the sports and luxury fashion sectors.
The single-storey store has been enlarged with the addition of two airy rooms that feature a striking monotone interior. The front door opens into the first space, which features a swooping, suspended ceiling installation of 440 white Nike Air Jordan 1 shoes circa the early 1980s. Accessories are displayed on a strict, sleek matrix of black or white shelves.
The second room boasts a central block of six mannequins encased in glass cabinets, and (echoing the multiple thematic of the trainer installation) a wall covered in hundreds of equally spaced Kith-branded pencils, which project outwards at varying lengths to create a wave pattern. Additionally, the space includes two frosted pieces of glass that turn clear when motion sensors are activated; one reveals a mirror, while the other shows a mannequin sporting current or soon-to-be sold pieces.
Two further rooms, which made up the original store, remain unchanged. The street-facing "boot room" features exposed bricks and reclaimed wood, while the dark, black "sneaker room" sports a large neon Kith sign and brightly coloured lights embedded in the recesses of the shelves.
Extending the collaboration, Kith is also selling a variety of unusual products designed by Snarkitecture, including wall hooks shaped like human hands.
Read more about Snarkitecture's artistic architecture in Building Fashion, Design Miami Picks, Odin's All-White Pop-Up, Architecture of Excavation, and Richard Chai's Ice-Cool Pop-Up, NY. For more on the value of art in the retail environment, see Art-Fuelled Fashion Spaces. See also Sports Retail Reinvented for additional information on the evolution of spatial design in sports retailing.