Over the past decade, Shoreditch has been transformed into a creative hub and more recently, a must-visit shopping destination with the boom of independent fashion stores around Shoreditch High Street, Redchurch Street and Calvert Avenue. This week, it became even more desirable for style aficionados and shopping enthusiasts as cult luxury fashion mecca Browns opened the doors to Browns East, its first bricks and mortar store to open for 20 years. Located on the corner of Club Row, the shiny new two-storey space, housed in a former print factory, complements the flagship store on South Molton Street, first established in the heart of London’s Mayfair in 1970.
Offering a completely fresh concept for its customers, Browns East is an augmented retail environment, which will be constantly changing and flexible. What does that actually mean? I hear you ask. Well, the entrance, an area in its own right, will regularly be handed over to independent creatives to build an immersive space, allowing Browns to further support and champion fresh talent in an authentic way. The inside space will also include the first incarnation of the Nomad project, Browns' take on semi-permanent, roaming retail concepts as a 21st-century response to the “pop-up store” model.
Holli Rogers, CEO of Browns explains: “Browns has a strong heritage in innovation; from the time we first opened our doors in 1970, Browns has showcased pioneering designers. We’ve blended our love of fashion with incredible in store experiences and we’ve always ensured that we change and evolve with our customers. The store will have new elements that are tied to emotion and identity – it’s truly a sensory experience. The moment you walk in you will feel something – through the people, the product, the design, the areas within the space, and the events that will take place. Coupled with this, we are innovating with technology which will make the shopping experience in Browns more personal and convenient for our customers. The vibrancy of East London is great – it’s a neighbourhood of immense creativity and boldness. Opening a store here is an exciting move with a new view on what retail looks like.”
The clothes and accessories will be presented in a gender-neutral retail space, where barriers between menswear and womenswear don’t exist. Offering a regularly rotating edit of the best in luxury fashion, across ready-to-wear, footwear, bags and fine jewellery, Browns East launches with 45 brands, including some of our favourites such as Rejina Pyo, Jacquemus, Gucci and Sies Marjan.
And when you need a moment's respite after perusing the rails there's a café with a marble-clad bar, stocked for launch by Fatties Bakery, where you can pick up a shiny cornflake bocadito or salted caramel brownie and turmeric latte.
Browns East also has impressive eco credentials; floorboards originally laid at the BBC have been carefully preserved and used in the ground floor space, while striking fixtures and furniture have been crafted from 100% recycled plastics.
The staircase-meets-gallery is home to a curated selection of multimedia artwork with launch artists including Polly Morgan, Juno Calypso and Lauren Baker, and all pieces are available for purchase at a range of price points.
As the closing date of iconic concept store Colette looms (December 20th if you want to book an express shopping trip to Paris), the opening of another branch of Browns is exactly the kind of exciting fashion news we've been waiting for.