Cross Stitch – Clothing Store

Architect: SR Designworks
Partners: Ar. Saad Mahmood Khan & Ar. Rashid Rasheed
Design team: Ar. Rashid Rasheed, Ar. Saad Mahmood Khan,
Project Architect: Ar. Hammad Riaz
Consultants: Electrical: Sabir Naseer. Husnain Associates. Lahore Pakistan
Public Health: Sohail Ahmad & Associates Contractor: Ceaser & Co.
Area: 2800 sft
Photography: Ahmed Shajee

The design works of the duo team Saad Mahmood and Rashid Rasheed are a result of an unusual and laborious creative process that provides an insight into how form evolves. The duo’s passionate belief that architecture should be tactile and visual leads to a hybrid engagement of constructional techniques that explore materials and craft techniques. The result is a mélange of works that extends into the expressive possibilities of design. The Cross Stitch Store is one of two Stores designed by SRDW in Gulberg, Lahore. The shop is narrow and almost 70 feet deep spanning three split-levels. The front and entrance levels have an added advantage of a 14 feet high ceiling (creating a sense of spaciousness) and light that travels on to other planes of the outlet. The shop does not boast of a broad front; an expanse of display window exposed to the bustling shopping street gives the interior display areas a fair amount of natural light. The spaces radiate away from the exterior, articulated as a series of interconnecting and intimate levels; the outcome – a forceful confrontation of an urban and interior space. The sidewalls are resplendent with rose tinted mirrors for additional visual depth and reflected light. The flooring is neutral and adorned with the brand’s interweave pattern as marble inlays that continues as a silkworm on the run creating a stitched pattern that yet again reinforces the brands identity. The pattern is insidious and travels from the floor to the walls and to the ceiling, reinforcing the brand’s claim on stitching essence and connecting the spaces with the motif. The palette is beige concrete with black triangles, mirrors, white walls and brass. Brass is also used on the entrance and all other metal work in the outlet creatively. A white perforated screen connects the levels; it visually divides the shop into two sections, entrance and display. The screen not only reduces depth but also create clear segments of the shop while bringing in more reflected light. Lighting is LED with additional support of metal halides for enhancing fabric colours. The window displays are unique and change every few months adding to the ever-changing feel of the shop as natural light traverses its path through time. For this design team the language of high-tech involves an exploration of the inventiveness and optimism of the industrial revolution.

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