Through the looking glass….and into the store!

H&M Fifth AvenueAn article I wrote a few months ago and reusing it because it has an important message that all ladies need to read about.

‘Just the other day, I remember standing at the cashier desk of the cutest boutique ready to swipe that card and add a dent to the student account for the perfect purple strappy heels. Wait, I only came into town for some milk – so why the impulse buy? I’ll agree the heels elongated my legs perfectly for my beloved lace mini dress, but I had come to the realisation that retail has a dramatic pull. Although my friends are on the same on-trend band wagon as me I still wanted to investigate the reasoning behind the concept.

Whilst in Lincoln with a friend, vowing to stay clear of any good sales, I brought up my thoughts on the shop and their mischievous schemes. Working in a retail shop throughout the summer my friend became familiar with the visual merchandising of the shop windows. I began research so that I could make more informed decisions before the dazed feeling of ‘I need it’ surfaced again. Incredibly, there’s a science and art act to the whole window shopping experience that I never knew.

Barney's Madison AvenueRetail takes into account the culture, location, and audience in order to produce a successful display. Speaking in practical terms, England is a dreary and dull country so a store like most in the Lincoln high street will have clear glassed windows, perfect lighting, bright colours, and no clutter. In return a desire becomes present to want that sort of feeling of carefree life and that the clothes can make it happen for you, consequently you are drawn into the store. Alternatively, different audiences may be craving alternative feelings. This goes for rich vs poor, high-street vs boutique, and city vs countryside.  Places like Topshop and Primark are perfect examples to this. Kind of reminds me a moth to a flame, are we really that easy to entertain?

Calvin Klein Madison AvenueMore advanced skills are used subliminally. I’m not talking propagandas, I mean mannequins. They’re placed in acute angles to catch the eyes of passersby. But it’s only to draw you closer to the window, which then cleverly guides your eyes into the shop and all the products sitting there waiting for a new home, your home. Ever wonder why they hang things in windows that overlap. How silly of them now you can’t see the design on the perfect summer coloured blouse, you’ll have to go into the store to have a proper look. Everything done to a shop window is all a part of a witty plan to draw attention to their store and away from competition.

Now that you have been officially informed of the mind-boggling effect that a store can have when you are only walking by, don’t be naive. I think through the years we can all come to the conclusion that window shopping is only fuelling the temptations, so do yourself a favour and leave the purse at home.’

Photos courtesy of: the window watcher


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