The last time we talked with Visual Director, Jose he was busy Lilly-fying The Breakers store. Now we’re catching him in the aftermath of the SouthPark store launch. We sat down with him (because he’s been standing for the last 4 weeks!!) for a quick Q & A session about our fabulous new home in Charlotte, NC. Here’s what he had to say!
1.When starting a new store design, how do you find inspiration? Where do you start? What’s your approach?
Well, it’s a team effort, that’s for sure. First I sit down with Jane Schoenborn (Design Director) and the Print Team to come up with creative and innovative store ideas. Let’s just say we are equipped with tons of coffee, sweets and for us dieters, water….LOL. We then dig into the history and culture of the city we’re moving to and pull themes, inspiration swipes and ideas together and see where we can carry out those themes inside the store. For SouthPark, we wanted to design a store that oozes Fun, Color and Lilly. When I think of Charlotte, I think southern belle, southern hospitality, pretty flowers and PINK. Oh did I mention something sparkly?! Ok glitter everything! (That’s more of the Janie infusion!) Those were the key words that popped into our heads when we started designing the store. Once we have the themes and ideas solidified we move on to what we call the “Glamification” process… it’s definitely the most fun! We take our inspiration and go crazy inside the store with paint, props, furniture.. And of course anything PINK. Our approach has always been to paint the town Pink…Kidding, not really….ok seriously, our approach is to celebrate the city’s fun, beauty and culture in a Lilly way. In Charlotte, we didn’t have to Lillify a lot since you gals are such Lilly Lovers already- we just needed to put a little bit more blush on your cheeks and add a little glitter in your step.
2. What are your 3 favorite features in the SouthPark store?
Really I can only pick three? (we knew he’d struggle with this one!) Hmm… Well let’s start with the windows! The windows are absolutely my number one! We’re constantly swimming in a fishbowl of fun at the SouthPark store. What do I mean by fishbowl? We’re surrounded by floor to ceiling storefront windows (we’re on a corner) and it’s fantastic. (probably because it allows us to enjoy all the excellent people watching!) We’re literally able to share our colorful fun with shoppers before they even enter the store.
My number 2 obsession has to be the Dogwood flowers. I LOVE Dogwood flowers! So this flower is the North Carolina state flower, and it totally inspired the front rooms of the SouthPark store. Paige and Ashley painted the walls with these flowers in pink, green and turquoise. We added a 3-D effect (no 3D glasses required) of GLITTERED dogwoods…let’s just say when you are sitting on the sofa, you will be surrounded by glitter and sparkle and no Lilly girl can resist that!
Okay I’m going to play my interior design card here for number three. My third favorite feature of the SouthPark store are the RUGS! OMG. Seriously? I love them! Not only are they gorgeous and colorful but they totally tie the store together and they remind me of Lilly’s home in Palm Beach. Lilly always knew best how to partner printed couches with printed rugs, colorful chairs and eclectic accessories. She was so daring with her color and pattern choices and yet each room always looked amazing. I like to think the SouthPark store has a lot of truly authentic “Lilly” themes within it.