Feature, Retail

Unusual shop tests lighting designer’s prowess

Lighting of a Tokyo sports shop, as achieved by Fagerhult Lighting

Fagerhult Lighting was challenged by a sports shop in Tokyo to create a modern and practical lighting design for an unusually dimensioned shop. The extremely high ceilings at 7.7 metres made the typical lighting of a sports shop – dark, with highlighted products – difficult to achieve without losing sight of that same ceiling.

As trainers have become a symbol of the 21st Century youth movement, sportswear stores have elevated their game over the last few years and can now be considered a fine example of cutting edge retail design. The likes of Nike, Adidas, Reebok have all set the benchmark with their lighting concepts. The common theme of all these stores is focussed lighting, dark floors and bright merchandise. This concept is easy to achieve with a standard ceiling height; however, much more difficult when given a 7.7 metre ceiling. Fagerhult’s introduction was based around the exact task: ‘We want to have focused lower level lighting, but we do not want to see the lighting and to disrupt the slat ceiling.’ Easier said than done, when the ceiling is so high.

‘The common theme of all these stores is focussed lighting, dark floors and bright merchandise’

Enter Fagerhult’s lighting design team – using the Marathon Midi 4500lm track spotlight, Fagerhult defied the client’s expectations by creating a minimalistic yet all-consuming lighting concept in the New York trainer brand’s first foray into the Middle East. The adoption of 4000K as the consistent colour temperature in the store goes against many retail lighting rules. However, the raw materials used in store, as well as the large amount of concrete, means the light perfectly complements the space.

The feature glass floor is another focal point of the space that has to be emphasised: it is edge lit with LED tape. The lighting is subtle, and most hidden, but it creates the right atmosphere: the store is a place you want to spend time in, and most importantly, the merchandise is showcased exactly how the client wanted. The concept was doubted, so much so that Fagerhult had to supply four metre suspension wires, as the client thought there was no way to light the space perfectly from 7.7 metres. In the end those wires were not required, and Fagerhult delivered on their promise.