Kitschy and shrill or dark and tight – most people associate this with the thought of piercing studios. This industry, which today mainly serves the generations Y and Z, hasn’t changed visually since its big boom in the 1990s and 2000s, when Y learned to read and Z was just born. The founders of Studs, Lisa Bubbers and Anna Harman, recognized this and commissioned HUXHUX Design to catapult their first store in the middle of Manhattan into the retail world of the 2020s, creating a symbiosis of sales, experience and feel-good atmosphere.
For this purpose, the New York creative minds developed a design that combines playful discovery and experimentation with clear geometry and the shapes of piercings. Like a blank sheet of paper, the basis of the Studs Store consists of a white box – whereby the targeted use of coloured light installations and dynamic surfaces brings the room to life. In the centre of the store, the curved “Ear Bar” attracts attention as soon as it is entered: the ear-shaped semi-circular sculptures made of neon acrylic present the customers with different sets of earrings, thus replacing the typical showcases.
The creators of HUXHUX Design paid special attention to the interaction between the overall design and the small size of the products: One wall of the store is used to display the pieces of jewellery, which can be viewed one after the other by those interested, as in a gallery. The mirrored surface and the neon-coloured light also allow the customers to become part of the room and invite them to self-reflection. Those who have decided for a piercing also spatially go from selling to treatment – but not without a proper #InstaMoment: The lounge in the back area of the store offers in front of a wall illuminated in the yellow tone of the brand the perfect background for before and after photos, which can be spread together with the logo in social networks.
From here, a mirrored walkway takes guests into the white treatment rooms, which appear sterile and futuristic at the same time without any playful light installations. As if transformed, the freshly pierced ones leave the brightly lit sales area of the shop through the corrugated mirrored corridor, from where they can take new body jewellery and innumerable photos, as well as an experience that leaves a lasting impression not only on their bodies …