The store where clothing is a great big story and in which shirts are heroes
Virginie originally intended to work in PR. But that career didn’t take into account her unquenchable thirst for art, instilled by her painter father. And her tenacious feeling that fashion, past mistress of silk-screen printing, had come to lack authenticity.
Her own masterpiece would be a small local shop, somewhere between a concept outlet and a traditional store, with unique, even bold, associations. But… where should she begin?
Virginie’s research lead her straight to Céraction. Reassured that her ideas were sufficiently robust, this non-profit organisation directed her to Atrium.Brussels for help with finding premises.
The Agency, with input from Virginie, selected two districts and accompanied her to view the properties available. She struck lucky in Châtelain. So a sticker was placed on the window of the premises for the duration of the works.
You experience rather than read this particular Préface which is punctuated by rails bearing oversized jumpers and hyphenated by tailored blouses. The heroines (read customers), apostrophised by flea-market furniture and delicate La Caravane dinnerware, soon lose their sense of time. Architecturally, the place expresses a calculated return to the 1920s. The Belle Epoque, that era that we devour, just like Virginie’s story book, into which we dive head first, eyes wide open.
I knew all about the fashion world. But the business world, not so much… Atrium, with its up-to-date knowledge of retailing in the various districts, gave me first-hand information that helped me hugely. The best thing about it was that I felt supported. Although I’m carrying out the project alone, I felt that I would always have somebody there supporting me.