Architectural Salvage in Retail Design   2 comments

Today’s post celebrates the use of architectural salvage in retail design.  Online stores are nipping at the heels of the ‘ol brick and mortar store fronts.  Many retailers understand the inevitable need for an online presence, but the hands-on experience of a store front “showroom” is essential as well.  Retail design can be a true positioning opportunity. Also, as businesses realize that “green” concepts can align well with “lean” operations, we are seeing the use of salvaged materials in design a bit more.  Using reclaimed elements in an establishment’s design hits two targets of the triple bottom line in one fell swoop: planet and profit.  Featured below are a few store fronts and creative consultants that are embracing the cost-effectiveness and Eco-consciousness of  “Re-Imagining”.

Keen Footwear Keen Footwear

Keen Footwear is an american shoe manufacturer based in Portland, Oregon.  Recently they moved into a 50,000 square foot office building in their hometown.  As an Eco friendly company catering to the active, outdoor enthusiast it was a no-brainer to incorporate planet-friendly materials into the headquarter’s retail store design.

Johnny's Tavern

Planet Reuse assisted in the design of this Kansas City sports bar and restaurant, Johnny’s Tavern, located in the Power & Light district.  “Reclaimed wood from the Kansas City’s Union Station is used for the restaurant’s 38 tabletops.”  (Planet Reuse)  Patrons get to sip a nice Guinness at oak table tops with a past life. Creative consultants, like Planet Reuse, source salvaged materials before demolition and develop clever ideas for retailers, restaurants and other businesses. Aside from honoring the city’s history by “re-imagining” and conserving natural resources, Planet Reuse reduced the cost of tabletops for Johnny’s owners.  New materials would have been 66% more.  Nice cost-effectiveness (profit), and innovative re-use (planet).

architectural salvage8Nunu Chocolate Shop

Another salvage designer, Nightwood in New York  has been featured in my favorite design blog, Design*Sponge, more than once!  Their tagline is “Reincarnated Furniture, Textiles, and Interiors”.   These 2 amazing women not only help design fantastic store fronts from heaps of salvaged goodies they’ve collected (Nightwood’s headquarters & Nunu’s Chocolate Shop above), but they also work on smaller projects for individual clients like dreamy beds (below), quaint settees, and sturdy media consoles.

Design*Sponge: Nightwood

(Image from Design*Sponge)

If you are curious to learn more about designing and building with reclaimed materials, visit your library or local book store.   In the meantime take a gander at these:

architectural salvage1architectural salvage3

I have the first little treasure, Reclaiming Style, on my bookshelf right now!  The co-authors, Maria and Adam, met in architecture school in Scotland and started the architectural salvage warehouse, Retrouvius, in 1993.  From light fixtures to copper lightening rods to stain glass windows, you’ll find it here.  The book also shares the stumbling blocks they face while sourcing their next pre-demolition adventure.  See the co-founders interview at Dwell.com.

Unbuilding is another great read on salvaging materials.  It focuses mainly on the process of deconstructing old homes, rather than historical buildings.  Authors Bob Falk and Brad Guy explain the “green” art of unbuilding and the methods used for determining the salvagability of materials.  Topics include safety concerns as well as the economic savings of re-using or re-imagining resources that would otherwise end up in landfills.

So before you look for vintage inspired fixtures and decor for your new store front… do a little sleuthing and hunt down an architectural salvage warehouse near you.  Help preserve a bit of history while saving valuable resources and money!

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Posted April 7, 2013 by bibbieandblue in Green Business

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2 responses to “Architectural Salvage in Retail Design

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  1. Hi, Every one!!! This is a very nice blog i got lots help from this blog, I got the best Marketplace to buy and sell architectural salvage and reclaimed building materials. Supplier of reclaimed lumber, antique doors, vintage lighting and much more.

  2. Jeba, is this your website: http://reclaimedarchitecture.com/ ?

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