We often discuss our philosophy of designing our “brick and mortar” retail environments with the needs of the time pressed shopper in mind.
In the recent years, this demand has moved retail into another direction, that of mobile stores, that go to the customers. So when we were approached by Grasshopper Goods, to design the interiors of Wisconsin’s first mobile boutique, we were more than excited for the opportunities.
“Grasshopper Goods is a mobile boutique (Vinny) in a converted 1977 step van that understands the needs of today’s busy shoppers. These professionals enjoy unique styles that can only be found in small boutiques and local shops, yet can’t find the time to frequent these stores. These customers also want to purchase with purpose. We are about sharing talented makers and artisans with the public with carefully curated items. Our mission is to support local artisans and small businesses. We also focus on collaboration not competition in the community and create personal and unique retail opportunities.”
The importance of activating and servicing the customer in 100 square feet creates new and challenging design goals, yet many stay consistent with traditional retail. We remained consistent in keeping product presentations straightforward, clear and flexible; allowing for consistent product showcasing and easy retrieval by the customer. We focused on three key customer sightlines – upon entry, during shopping in the truck and outside at exit.
As with in store retail, emphasis was placed on providing quality lighting within and outside the fixtures. This was critical to make sure that the inside of the truck was adequately lite, along with making sure it could be sourced by onboard electrical equipment.
Departing from tradition, we addressed the new challenges – space and mobility. Planning needed to be reviewed for capitalizing every square inch, vs. square foot. However, even with the space constraints we were able to incorporate a temporary and “at need” fitting room. The trucks mobility needed to be considered, designing displays and storage similar to those for aircraft or yachting. Fixtures that allowed for secure storage and safety during “Vinny’s” 10,000+ miles a season travels. Finally, we reviewed materials for durability and weight.
Our design and fabrication efforts along with an ambitious and knowledgeable client has resulted in tremendous praise and retail accolades.
• Attendance of over 200+ events
• Traveled over 10000+ miles in Wisconsin and Illinois
• 2700+ Instagram followers
• 1600+Facebook followers
• 6000+ current customers
• Donated over $2000 to charities
• Part of the Market Ready program for the Public Market.
• Won FIRST PLACE for Madison’s Isthmus MAD FAVs Women’s Boutique in 2018 and 2019
The Grasshopper Goods mobile boutique was an exciting and rewarding design project beginning to end and we are additionally excited to report that due to the truck’s success, there are discussion of a future “brick and mortar” home base store.