Retail Trend: Crate and Barrel Design Studio Opens

Jamie Grill-Goodman
Editor in Chief
Jamie goodman

Crate and Barrel is weaving design services and tech tools into its latest concept store, a trend picking up steam with furniture retailers.

Crate and Barrel Design Studio, the home goods and furnishings retailer’s latest concept store, opened in Pasadena, CA, on Jan 30th.

“The Crate and Barrel Design Studio is a boutique-like one-stop shop for customers to shop a curated selection of our very best furniture and decor, receive expert guidance, and get inspired to help provide all they need to bring their home and design visions to life,” the retailer told RIS.

The new concept store is an extension of the retailer’s online Design Studio online services, where customers can sit down with a design expert who can help create a plan customized for any design needs, ranging from a total home renovation to just a small furniture makeover.

Crate and Barrel’s design experts use digital tools, 3D design renderings, mood boards, and floor plans to help bring these plans to life. The experts specialize in a range of focuses on the home, for example, upholstery or dinnerware.

The new Crate and Barrel concept follows a trend to bring online planning services into stores. IKEA opened its first U.S. IKEA Planning Studio last year, in which its experts are available to help customers in designing spaces and planning projects. The Planning Studio also offers areas outfitted with computers where shoppers can interact with Ikea’s online room-planning features, and touch-screens allowing customers to easily look up products.

In 2018, RH, formerly Restoration Hardware, opened RH New York, which imbedded an Interior Design Firm into its retail experience for the first time. The second floor houses RH Interior Design offices, as well as five private client presentation rooms with discreet VIP entrances and state-of-the-art technology. The glass-encased RH Interior Design presentation rooms are each wired with Apple TVs and LG OLED monitors, allowing for a wireless and paperless design presentation experience for clients. Each presentation room also has its own sound system allowing designers to control each room individually to the client’s specifications.


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