Since Sandy Chilewich founded her eponymous textile company at the start of the 21st century, her distinctive textiles have become fixtures on tablescapes, on floors, and across walls and windows around the world. With their innovative weaves and distinctive multi-tonal hues, Chilewich placemats and other products are equally suited to patio dinner parties as they are to the permanent collection of Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum—which currently has more than half a dozen in their holdings.
This spring, Chilewich expands its second retail outpost, just steps from the action-packed D&D Building in New York City, with an outdoor garden and event space designed by local firm DLANDstudio. Below, we delve into the new digs through the eyes of Sandy Chilewich and CEO Joe Sultan.
Description: Chilewich’s second retail store—and largest to date—houses the brand’s complete collection of textiles, including the increasingly popular rugs, which can be used indoors and out. Designed with designers in mind, it offers a full sample/swatch program, a vast array of customizable options, the full line of Chilewich Contract weaves, and a conference room where designers can meet with their clients and colleagues. A showcase wall displays signature materials and prototypes from Sandy Chilewich’s personal collection.
Inspiration: The new store is an invitation into Chilewich’s creative world. It’s modeled on the design of the nearby design studio and headquarters. In the back, a garden rich with trees welcomes clients, along with products that can be used in rain or shine, from under patio furniture or atop outdoor dining tables.
Blueprint: The objective of giving visitors the experience of stepping into the studio and being part of the creative process is achieved through evocative design elements: the store’s yarn wall, see-through display shelves, a peg display system, and inspiration wall are each modeled on their studio equivalents. A low ceiling is brightened by a lighting concept that properly illuminates the product, and gives customers a bright, welcoming environment.
Takeaways/Uniqueness: To celebrate the opening of the new store, the team created a new textile to benefit World Central Kitchen, the not-for-profit founded by chef José Andrés which provides meals in response to humanitarian, climate, and community crises while offering access to professional culinary training and improved food security. The limited edition Wink is only available at the Uptown location, in a range of placemats and table runners. In a nod to the inspiration of the new store, Wink’s uniquely dimensional surface is created by hand-finishing steps carried out at the New York studio.