2017 RCA Final Project, Graduation Show
<Reactive and Responsible Retail>
UK retail sales estimated value is currently 321 billion. Consumers are bombarded with choices, but how much are these choices ethically and socially responsible? The fashion industry currently occupies 85% of retail stores in the Regent Street as the major fashion street. Greenpeace reported a harmful chemicals issues within the textile and clothing items in fashion market. This design project proposed three key interventions to raise consumer consciousness about the environmental impact of fashion retail and the better way of consumption on the Oxford Circus.
The first intervention is the Story Pods which is a public space to inform the environmental issues to the public on a mobile app. It allows consumers to reflect on their shopping options and encourage them to make more ethical choices. The second intervention is the Ethical Entrance inserted into the entrance of Nike Town, which scans a chip embedded in the packaging of each purchase and playfully captures whether the customer has chosen are made from sustainable materials or not. It provides a specific experience of ethical choice to the customers. The third intervention, Repurpose Retail, is a re-recycled (re-dyed) store and a natural dyeing workshop space within the Benetton store. It gives customers opportunities to consider ethical consumption and production.
This project does not attempt to solve the ethical problems of brands or consumerist consumption. Instead, it uses non-confrontational spatial design interventions to provoke customer’s interest and increase social awareness about the environmental impact of shopping choices. It also gives key brands the chance to demonstrate their commitment to new ethical agendas through imaginative design interventions.
research @ regent street, 2017