Our Phipps Plaza retail store in Atlanta, GA has been open for less than a week and the reaction we get from almost every customer who walks in the door is, “Wow- this is all hand painted?!?” The answer is yes! The Lilly print designers (yes… the same ones that bring you your favorite Lilly prints), also bring you an unforgettable brand experience in-store by hand painting what you see in our new (and now most) of our retail stores. The team is led by our Visual Director, Jose Cuadra, who is giving us a quick peek into the process of opening a new retail store, from sketch to store!…
The process has always been the same – trap the most creative people in the building (that always includes Janie and the print team), dose us all up with caffeine and pile up the chocolates and desserts and let the creativity flow! We always start the brainstorm with our goal in mind – to celebrate the city’s [where our retail store will be located] culture, lifestyle and people and infuse that with the fun and whimsy that is Lilly Pulitzer. Once the brainstorm ends, the team creates illustrations (the sketches you see in this post) of the vision for the store and these are the guides used for the build out process. We started this process called Lilly-fication about 4 years ago and appropriately, it started in our Palm Beach Garden store! And let me tell you, each year we get better and crazier – from printed animal heads on walls to swinging monkeys on chandeliers.
For Phipps, we started with the main sales floor and included lots of magnolia flowers – what can be more Atlanta and southern?! The magnolia flowers are made from lightweight cardboard, lacquered and painted with a matte finish that gives it an artsy but sexy and feminine look. But we are KNOWN for our extravagant fitting rooms and at Phipps, we truly stepped it up. Four fitting rooms with four different designs.
We always include the “Lilly Story” which has become a staple for us- it’s just how we do it that always changes & surprises our customers. This time, we told the “It all started with a juice stand” story through wallpaper designed by print designer, Ashley Begley. We topped it off with a hand painted watercolor inside a shadow box that will be hanging in the room. The toile dressing room (above-done by our toile master, Paige Smith) is hand painted with truly ATL landmarks and something nutty on the ceiling. And since golfing is pretty big in Atlanta, we let this inspire us to fill the room with colored golf balls & tees – ALL OVER! The last dressing room we can describe as Resort Chic- shells fill this room and they pop off a bright pink background!
As you go towards the back of the store, you will see this vestibule that we call “Strike a pose” – we know people in ATL love to be photographed, so we have these real cameras lacquered and painted with the yummiest colors. You will definitely will be striking a pose when you see this room!
Even the bathrooms get Lilly-fied. The word Hotlanta was our inspiration, soooo we were inspired by anything HOT and fiery – you’ll see exactly what we mean when you step into this room!
Opening this store, and really every store, is a true labor of love for all of us. We are so excited that the doors are open and that we can now share the store with all of Atlanta. We sure hope you come see our whimsical, colorful, and printed store as only Lilly Pulitzer can do! Be sure to plan a visit to this retail location if you’re ever in Atlanta- it won’t disappoint!
Photography courtesy of Deb Jansen Photography