Review: Retail Design Collective 2015

The annual event drew retailers and industry insiders to the Big Apple, Dec. 2-4
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Posted February 3, 2016

The visual merchandising and store design communities converged on New York’s Chelsea neighborhood for the annual Retail Design Collective, presented by A.R.E.|POPAI (Hollywood, Fla.) and headquartered at the Metropolitan Pavilion, Dec. 2-4, 2015.

Attendees could visit more than 25 showrooms unveiling the latest trends in visual merchandising, fixtures, lighting and materials. The pavilion was home to a number of fixture, p-o-p display and material suppliers as well as four educational conference sessions held throughout the week.

Among the trends observed this year was a clear homage to nature and organic shapes and forms. From Architectural Systems Inc.’s (New York) textured wood panels and stone veneers to Visual Citi’s (Lindenhurst, N.Y.) bright, modern florals and natural wood displays, Mother Nature’s beauty was well represented. Silvestri California (Los Angeles) elevated the concept, exploring organic hand-painted forms covered in papier-mâché that resembled peeling bark.

A move toward simplicity was also evident during market week. Mondo Mannequins (Hicksville, N.Y.) made a bold statement with a line of men’s and women’s mannequins, entitled Elegance. The mannequins at Goldsmith (New York) donned sophisticated evening attire, with their hair swept up in top knots, while those at DK Display Corp. (New York) struck elegant poses clad in sheer fabrics, set against the clean lines of wood floors and white walls.

The 19th annual PAVE Gala drew a massive crowd to Cipriani Wall Street for networking, fundraising and an awards program in honor of the best and brightest students in the industry. The yearly PAVE Rising Star Award was bestowed upon Elizabeth Price, senior interior designer, FRCH Design Worldwide (Cincinnati). The event raised about $275,000, supporting PAVE’s mission to benefit educational programs and showcase student design work.

During the gala, VMSD presented its Excellence in Visual Merchandising and Design Award to Joseph Abboud (New York), Valentino (Milan) and Urban Outfitters (Philadelphia), honoring each retailer’s New York store designs. ST Media Group Intl. (Cincinnati) President Tedd Swormstedt, VMSD Editorial Advisor/New York Editor Eric Feigenbaum and VMSD Editor-in-Chief Jennifer Acevedo joined the honorees on stage.