Quality in Simplicity
EXPLORING DESIGN AT MARGARET HOWELL
Located in Marylebone, the Margaret Howell store is less a store but more reminiscent of a gallery, with undertones of British quality and simplicity throughout. It only just so happens that you can purchase the carefully curated items on display too.
Sitting under this airy space, filled with natural light from its large conservatory glass roof, is a collection of her latest clothing and accessories, accented by a combination of furniture, lighting and crockery from other notable designers.
The way the space is laid out, emphasis is placed on visitors to explore the design philosophy of not only finding quality and simplicity, but also finding quality in simplicity.
The dimly lit entrance, curates a display of Japanese minimalism of everyday household items under its well-lit oak panelled shelves. Adjacent, the oversized check out counter holds an array of reading material on mid-century design. The theme resonates further in with beautiful wood furniture from English designer Ercol, iconic lamps by Anglepoise, and exclusive handmade ceramics and stoneware by Keiko Hasegawa. All of which, are placed first and foremost in the centre. The clothing racks are secondly, cushioned along on each side.
"I enjoy pulling threads of British tradition, quality and skill together in clothes that are meant to be worn in the real world, where good design is about living with thoughtful style." -Margaret Howell
As such, most would have been encouraged to explore, to touch, to be inspired, by the same common ethos of quality in simplicity these brands pursue. This in turn translates to a better understanding of her design approach of functional and relaxed everyday clothing.
I can't help but wish more retail space would follow suit. The concept, conceived and curated by Margaret, is understated by form and true to function. A noteworthy tribute to contemporary British design.