- Danielle Wightman-Stone |
Chinese high-end ready-to-wear brand Icicle has expanded internationally with the opening of its first European flagship in the heart of Paris, on Avenue George-V, within the Triangle d’Or area.
Founded in Shanghai in 1997, Icicle has become known for its minimal and contemporary style for men and women, as well as its use of natural materials within its collections. In China, Icicle currently has 270 boutiques in 70 cities, however, its expansion into Europe is a major stepping stone to grow the label internationally.
The Paris flagship is located in the former bourgeois town-house built by Louis Legrand in 1894, and the style of the boutique is minimal and contemporary, mixing “Chinese tradition and Western knowhow”, while also being respectful of the building’s history and of the environment, with the design preserving the original elements of the property including the façade, entrance and stairs.
Designed by Belgian architect Bernard Dubois, the 4,736 square foot boutique spans over four levels and has been “thought of as a path” explains the brand in the press release.
When visitors arrive, they discover an impressive ceiling height and the ornamented architecture of the building. They then slide to the main space of the boutique, entirely mineral, while the upper floors are divided into different materialities, including wood (Oak, Walnut, Cedar) and ceramics. There is also a continuity of colour throughout the space with all floors, walls and ceilings the same hue, staying true to the brand’s minimal approach to fashion.
“The project highlights solid materials from the earth. It is part of a sustainable approach in the sense of longevity,” states Bernard Dubois. “As for Icicle clothing, it is an opposite view to contemporary overconsumption, immediacy and throwability. The project aims to be sustainable, both by the quality of its materials and by the simplicity of its design.”
As well as housing the brand’s ready-to-wear and accessory collections, the flagship also has a “cultural space that embodies the spirit” of the brand featuring nearly five hundred books, including twelve essential publications, tinged with Chinese and Western cultures, the library originates from the brand’s Natural Way philosophy which explores the ways of being, living and creating according to nature. This space will regularly host exhibitions, readings and lectures.
Images: courtesy of Icicle