Contrary to the trend of bringing the ‘inside out’, Merrell’s flagship NZ store cleverly brings the ‘outside in’! Muros stacked stone wall panels were effectively used to recreate the feeling of kicking up dust to climbing up mountains. As a result showcasing Merrell’s worldwide purpose-designed footwear, apparel and accessory range for hiking and trail running.
Despite a significant international presence from its humble beginnings custom making boots for outdoor enthusiasts, the American brand was not equally recognised here. It was welcomed by Kiwis due to their natural love of the outdoors. The hero store in Christchurch (New Zealand) needed to be equally welcoming – to bring them in and build brand awareness.
Plan for design and shop fit out
Designability was engaged to create a retail fit out that embodied the spirit of Merrell and their passion for New Zealand’s stunning natural environment. Specialising in bespoke interior spaces, this project had a particular focus on brand. Designability therefore incorporated Merrell’s story into the creative retail design for the Westfield Riccarton shop. Furthermore it sought to fit with overseas specification and guidelines for the Merrell brand. The result was a shop fit out that combined elements of the branding with an earthy palette of materials. A combination of visually interesting, but not overpowering environment with warmth needed to entice shoppers.
Incorporating Muros stacked stone panels into the brand
Consequently, a stacked stone veneer, Muros Earth Strata Stone, was selected to resemble natural resources found outdoors. Its job was to capture the emotive feeling of dirt trails and rugged stony ranges. The textured stacked stone and colour also contrasted well with the strong Merrell orange signage easily affixed to the panels. The stone panel design itself is a tight array of irregular-shaped blocky stone. As a result it was appealing for its modern twist setting it apart in design from traditional stone cladding.
The versatility and adaptability for small spaces was also considered for selection. With a thin relief, Muros fibreglass-based decorative wall panels are designed to be cut and jointed for multiple spaces, in this case around columns and counters. Joints were made to look seamless using installation materials provided. The finish featured the faux stacked stone panels ‘wrapping around’ corners and angles on the stone columns and counter.
Click here for more information on Muros Earth Strata Stone or other panel designs.