London – Design studio James Plumb has transformed an old bakery in Lamb’s Conduit Street into a sublime sanctuary for Aesop.
As with all new Aesop stores, the designers borrowed from local references, taking inspiration from the street named after William Lambe, who in 1577 funded the reconstruction of a conduit to carry water to the city from local springs. The copper shelves that run along the retail area’s left wall are designed so that a constant stream of water flows through them, while clever lighting reflects the pattern of the water onto the wall.
‘We’d always had water in mind as a material because it’s such a catalyst for Aesop’s product,’ says designer James Russell. ‘Then we discovered all of this amazing history around the street. The light and sound are the two most important parts of the design, they create a feeling of serenity.’ In an adjoining space, a more dramatic projection is achieved through a sculptural installation in which water drips from a copper quill into a vessel below, referencing the quill pipes used by past residents to connect the conduit to their floor.
The Big Picture: Aesop’s store on Lamb's Conduit Street is deliberately modelled to feel welcoming. Create a home from home to let consumers escape from their hyper-connected lives.