By Georgina Sweeting
A mall made of old shipping containers may not be everyone’s ideal shopping destination, but the idea is perfectly suited to the entrepreneurial, make do-and-mend spirit of London’s creative East End, where Boxpark Shoreditch opened earlier this year. The temporary development at Bethnal Green Road packs innovative invitation-only brands, eating places and galleries into a unique space made of 60 individually decorated shipping storage boxes.
The latest brand to set up shop there is the rather appropriately-named men’s clothing retailer Boxfresh. And it’s not just the name that’s appropriate: established in 1989 at Greenwich Market, the brand’s street-style fashion cleverly ties in with the park’s rough, industrial feel.
The challenge of the small, 12m (l) x 2.5m (w) x 2.7m (h), selling space proved no problem for Boxfresh as it went hand-in-hand with its new retail concept of interpreting a raw, edgy and industrial feel, while creating the illusion of space, which logically slotted in with Boxpark’s nature. Decorated in a strong palette of contrasting textures of steel, a concrete wall with beautifully finished oak fixtures and industrial tube lighting, the store reflects the brand’s urban style.
As Boxpark will only be around for five years before it is cleared to make way for bigger developments, Boxfresh is looking to spread out and bring its street style to independent and larger retailers across the globe.