25,000 Paper Bags
Monday, June 11th, 2012
By Sarah Murray
Phillip Salem certainly did not waste any time whatsoever in opening OWEN, his new fashion gem in the Meatpacking District. Apparently no one told the recent Fashion Institute of Technology grad that one typically does not open a fabulous boutique only two years after graduating. But, being the overachiever that he is, Salem went right to work finding established designers like Surface to Air, Karen Walker, and Cheap Monday as well as up-and-comers like Ostwald Helgason, Ashley Rowe and Timo Weiland—some of which are exclusive to OWEN. The overall feel of the selection is stylish and always classy, featuring pieces that will last years without looking dated. Salem's approach to customer service is summed up in the first sentence of OWEN's training manual, which specifies that "Everyone who walks in the door should be treated like Beyoncé."
The luxurious shopping experience is enhanced by an ingenious display designed by Tacklebox's Jeremy Barbour. Constructed out of 25,000 paper lunch bags, the continuous, arching display adds depth and character to the already edgy shop. It also fit in perfectly with Salem's vision for the store. "Jeremy ended up coming up with the bags, which create this honeycomb, floral feel. It perfectly resembles my vision and direction for the store to incorporate the industrial history of the building with this juxtoposition of this floral curved ceiling," says Salem. The store was once a meat storage facility and then an art gallery.
This project is the first in a series of signature stores for OWEN and Phillip Salem; we can't wait to see what he will entice us with next.