Sophisticated Shimmer
Posted April 22, 2005

When Rose Rivera, Owner of Ms'tique, decided to double the size of her women's apparel boutique, she wanted to take her modestly designed shop and turn it into her dream store.

Rivera hired Horst Design Intl. (Cold Spring Harbor, N.Y.) to transform her shop, full of display racks and shelves piled high with designer merchandise, into a simple, elegant environment where the apparel is paramount.

Starting from the front of the store, 10-foot-high wooden display boxes frame the mannequins in the window, which are internally illuminated on four sides with T8 fluorescent spx-30 lamps behind frosted plexi panels.

Sweeping arches span the width of the store and culminate into feature display walls, which are merchandised as individual designer shops. Accenting these feature walls, 12-foot-tall floating diamond-shaped steel display grids are lit through a frosted glass back. Incandescent halogen lighting softens the ambience in this area.

"Our greatest challenge was to transform a narrow and long space into a fashionable environment where it is easy to view the merchandise and walk through the store," says design firm president Douglas Horst. "By developing a central aisle of deeply colored stone flooring flanked by 2-foot bands of Brazilian cherry wood, we're driving shoppers comfortably from the entrance to the rear of the store."

As the central focal point, a large customer service desk incorporates the Ms'tique logo emblazoned on the front in stainless steel. Small jewel-like shimmering metal beads hanging overhead break up the curved ceiling, while also giving customers a transparent view of the product displays behind them. Four hanging chrome globes brighten the cashwrap and offer contrast to the small beaded screens.

Throughout the boutique, open ceilings with floating white planes alternate with repetitive arches, adding a sense of drama. Recessed overhead compact fluorescent lighting creates a warm and soothing glow.

Additional visual merchandising displays are placed in a large Mondrian-like cutout display featuring stylishly clothed mannequins.

Client: Ms'tique, Woodbury Village Shopping Center, Woodbury, N.Y.
Rose and Felix Rivera, owners

Design and Architect: Horst Design Intl., Cold Spring Harbor, N.Y.
Douglas Horst, president, principal and project designer
Eric Bress, account executive
John Cajowski, project coordinator
Cynthia Davidson, director of colors and materials
Kenn Butts, project architect

General Contractor: T.J. Construction, Franklin Square, N.Y.

Fixtures and Furniture: Artco Group, Miami

Fixtures: Alpha, Bronx, N.Y.

Flooring: East to West Architectural Products Inc., East Northport, N.Y.

Lighting: Store Lighting Systems, Great Neck, N.Y.

Wallcoverings and Materials: Designtex Group, New York
Innovations, New York

Photography: Chris Lovi/Elliot Fine Photography, New York