Popping to the shops
- Kirstin Innes
- 4 December 2009
Who needs permanent premises? Shopping Editor Kirstin Innes profiles the newest trends in pop-up boutiques
Because we have very low boredom thresholds at the best of times, The List’s shopping team is always on the look out for ways to make the festive consumer trudge more interesting. And right now, our fickle attention spans have been caught by pop-up shops. They’re new, they’re shiny, they’re unpredictable, they don’t last long and they’re absolutely nothing like the high street.
‘Pop-up shops generate huge excitement through their spontaneous nature. They’re immediate, high-energy. Now you see it, now you don’t,’ says Fleur Macintosh of List vintage favourite Godiva, in Edinburgh’s West Port. During this year’s Edinburgh Fringe, Godiva oversaw the rather brilliant Go-Reborn, a week-long pop-up boutique/hangout/artist space upstairs from the Ingleby Gallery. It was such a success that they’re running it all over again in an empty space in Princes Mall in the run up to Christmas. The last Go-Reborn featured rails of one-off designs by recent fashion graduates, and a hand-picked selection of graffiti artists, illustrators and painters experimenting on canvas walls, which Godiva designers then abstracted into accessories. They’re still looking for designers and artists to ‘rent a rail’ at Go-Reborn 2: see www.go-reborn.co.uk for precise details.
On a slightly smaller scale, brand new local headphone company Audio Chi (as featured in our Christmas shopping guide a few weeks ago, www.audiochi.com) will be hosting their own pop-up Sound Lab in Glasgow’s Princes Square throughout December and January. Bring along your iPod (or any other mp3 player, of course) and try hearing it through their Structural Acoustics(tm) Technology.
Very much in the same spirit as Go-Reborn, Bicycle Thieves: A Garment Depository is our latest discovery. In the teensy basement of Easter Road vintage furniture trove Retrospective, there’s a just-opened, teensy second-hand clothing outlet. It’s chock full of very wearable stuff at excellent prices, they’ve got a seriously lovely dressing room space and crazy plans to pack live bands in there, and thoroughly bonkers weekend-only opening hours. Okay, it’s not technically a pop-up boutique, as they’ve got plans to make it permanent, but we recognise the same sort of energetic, crazy, hands-on attitude, and we salute. (Retrospective, 155 Easter Road, Edinburgh. Facebook: tinyurl.com/yf74y4s)