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It seems that 2007 is the year for fashion, as we review yet another firm favourite, although this time in Nottingham’s Listergate.  As with Primark, it is New Look’s largest and most significant store to date.  Aware of the need to compete in such a crowded market, they have left no stone unturned in this latest high street presence.  Store designer, Darren Lintern explains, “We wanted to move on the customer experience and give our customer what they want and make it easy to find.  A need existed to make the store aspirational and impactful in a major market where all key competitors trade.  Right opposite River Island and H&M, the new store is not really a flagship but a top level City Market and a first move on from trial stores”.

It is hard to believe that this grand store was once WH Smiths, Darren says, “The building was a mess with previous occupiers, WH Smiths only trading at ground and part basement level, which was shared with a ‘traditional’ café.  Structural issues were complicated by the presence of ancient caves beneath the store.  The landlords carried out strip and enabling works to allow us to trade on all three levels and we had a main contractor plus a number of smaller specialist contractors to help complete the refit” 

Each of the three floors offers 10,000 square feet of sales space and brings a whole new dimension to this iconic fashion chain.  The breadth and depth of a brand most usually associated with young female fashion is immediately apparent as you step in and the nice thing about the various sectors is that they have been given their own individuality. 

The whole of the ground floor, as expected, is devoted to their core market and features heavily on denim.  Baronial style House of Denim signs and column graphics clearly mark out the area and a freestanding scaffolding unit displays jeans.  The perimeter wall is then clad with half hung denim to ensure density and the rear of the store features pairs of legs protruding to show how the styles look on.  There is also a fashion co-ordinates area with open fronted display boxes to break up heavy merchandising, seasonal ranges, plus tills and fitting rooms.  At the centre are the impressive escalators in their customary green carrying shoppers up and down. 


Downstairs, shoes are displayed on green translucent shelving.  New Look is in fact the UK’s largest volume women’s shoe retailer and this store alone holds more than 40,000 pairs, which they expect to turn over within just a couple of weeks.  A phenomenal amount of shoes!  So, naturally it looks fabulous.  Alongside is menswear, which is extremely spacious, predominantly blue and features its own shoe department using the same shelving as before, but blue.  Whilst menswear has always been part of New Look’s core range, much of Nottingham will be seeing it for the first time and so it was important to make the area inviting and to dedicate a whole window to display the range.

Upstairs is lingerie and nightwear, displayed against soft padded walls and screened off from the rest of the store using the latticed silver room separators.  Next are accessories, which are currently being trialled, the kid’s range and 915 Generation range for older children.  The kids’ range is displayed upon bright yellow fixtures, whilst the 915 Generation features a series of arches and grown up graphics. 


Whilst this store is clearly not a totally new concept, New Look have endeavoured to further develop and work on many of the previously successful features of earlier stores to create this outstanding outlet.  Darren says, “Nottingham is fundamentally the same base fit-out as the roll-out format within the UK, however, we have moved on the visual merchandising implementation and clear definition between sub-brand spaces.  Fixtures and fittings are standard, although all New Look and bespoke.  There is ceramic tiling to the floor.  Lighting is predominately CDM-T for colour stability and accent lighting.  Large directional in-store directories navigate through sub-brands and large lifestyle and product orientated graphics cover the walls and focal points.”  It’s evolution rather than revolution.


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