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Design showcase: Concrete + Water, Brooklyn

Brooklyn, New York, fashion boutique Concrete + Water has been designed to minimise its environmental footprint and energy use.

The lifestyle store is based in a 2,000 sq ft former industrial space in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. It uses skylights and floor to ceiling windows to create a light, open space.

The open interior helps the inside space connect with the outdoor space at the rear of the store, a rarity for a New York commercial site.

Design is by Gita Nandan of Brooklyn architecture firm Thread Collective. Nandan is active in New York’s sustainability movement, sitting on several boards and committees that promote sustainable development.

The store features clean lines, white walls, polished concrete floors and generous wood detailing to give a loft apartment-like aesthetic. Non-toxic finishes have been chosen in line with the brand’s eco credentials.

Colours used in the store were inspired by the vibrant colours of the tropics as well as ‘classic tones of the streets’ of Brooklyn.

The stores sells men’s and women’s fashion, alongside a home living section. Products are by local and international designers.

Dressing rooms are in the centre of the store, with wood cladding on the walls to make a cosier area.

A cash desk is opposite the changing rooms. It is clad in wood and Viroc, a cement board also used as  a flooring finish in the store. Custom wall paper by Calico, another Brooklyn company, is used as a backdrop.

A rear patio area is still under development and will allow the store to host ‘trunk shows’, special events, dance parties and other gatherings. The rear garden wall features a commissioned work by a local street artist.

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