The way in which we shop has changed dramatically over the past few years. Yet as High Street shopping is replaced with the convenience of the online store, the experience of touching, trying and smelling an object will never be replaced. While some of the larger chains are struggling to implement web-based change, the new Sneakerboy concept store is taking it to another level.
The first of many to be rolled out, Sneakerboy Melbourne is at the cusp of this retail revolution. It is an online store you can walk into; there is no stock, no cash, no till and no product to take home. All that is needed to make a purchase in the store is a smart phone, (or one of the in-store iPads) and a Sneakerboy ID. The rest of the available space is dedicated to the range of shoes, which means Sneakerboy can boast a larger range of stock on a much smaller footprint.
The architecture and the branding of the store, also designed at March Studio, follows this underlying business structure, and yet also brings the digital connectivity to the forefront.
Customers are invited into the fitting room to check sizing and to make purchases. Constructed from 300 blackened steel pigeon holes, the fitting room is conceived as a library, housing all sizes of all styles. Six custom spun steel chairs with integrated iPad holders anchor the room and give the customers the opportunity to browse online and purchase as they try on sneakers.
Photography by Ross Honeysett.