WHEN DID DARK ROOM LONDON OPEN AND WHO ARE THE fOUNDERS? Darkroom opened just over 18 months ago and was founded by myself, Lulu Roper-Caldbeck and Rhonda Drakeford. Our respective backgrounds in fashion and interiors have helped us develop the ideas and necessary experience to venture forwards and we have been delighted at how the shop has been received.
WHY THE NAME DARKROOM? The name Darkroom has a number of connotations that work strongly with our concept. Our customers experience a range of edgy, thought provoking designs, some of which are unashamedly dark in style. Throughout history innovation and difference have tended to be conSidered of 'dark' origin until normalisation occurs, Alternatively, in a photographic sense, a darkroom is where a photographer can finally realise ones concepts to be viewed in physical form, it is a place where creativity is developed.
EXPLAIN THE ATMOSPHERE Of THE STORE fOR SOMEONE WHO HAS NEVER ENTERED BEfORE. Although we are typically defined as a 'concept store' we have tried our best to stay away from being too exclUSive - an idea commonly associated with being a 'concept store'. Our aim is to appeal to many different customers with varying spending budgets and feel it is important for individuals to feel relaxed within the space and we encourage interaction with the products on display. At the same time the look of the store is by no means neutral - jet black walls, large wooden plinths and a hand painted geometric floor form the backdrop to the diverse, innovative design on offer.
WITH WHAT CRITERIA ARE THE BRANDS SELECTED fOR DARK ROOM? We work really hard to find unusual items that are not already represented in London. We choose by product, style and design rather than designer - we are rarely label led. In
continuing to seek out innovation and quality design we source our products from both a mixture of established and up and coming designers as well as those with more traditional craft based skills from smaller communities around the world. Whilst all the products we offer may vary greatly in their origin it is always vital for us that they fit within our Darkroom aesthetic which is very distinctive and often quite hard-edged and geometric.
WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT CHARACTERISTIC Of YOUR STORE, AND HOW DOES DARK ROOM DEfER fROM OTHER CONCEPT STORES? The most important characteristic of our store is the focus on accessories for men, women and home. Within thiS we examine several concepts, at the forefront, the crossover between fashion and interiors and the juxtaposition of materials, scale and form, Our interior accessories explore the diverse materials, textures and production techniques of clothing or jewellery. Boundaries between art and design are questioned by functional pieces that also hold sculptural qualities, a necklace may be worn traditionally or hung on the wall as an object d'art. Although some of our pieces naturally lend themselves to either men or women, many items could be appreciated by both, thus creating a less segregated shopping environment.
"...DARKROOM AESTHETIC WHICH IS VERY DISTINCTIVE AND OFTEN QUITE HARD-EDGED AND
ISSUE | A Post Modern Overview