Discovered by Barnardo’s – New Store Concept in Denton Retail Park, Manchester

21st August 2012

Children’s Charity Barnardo’s recently challenged Barber to develop a new concept in charity retail store design. They wanted to get away from the traditional image of drab charity shop interiors. As experienced and respected retail interior and branding designers with a track record of creating original and stylish retail spaces, Barnardo’s knew that Barber were the best choice to help reboot their image, helping them to develop a new flagship fashion superstore in Manchester, elevating their position in the marketplace as a high-fashion retail brand that will compete comfortably with surrounding high street fashion retailers.

Photo by Mike Petrucci on Unsplash

Photo by Mike Petrucci on Unsplash

The initial ‘Discovered by Barnardo’s concept was developed by Fitch branding agency who designed a visual language for the store incorporating a set of playful photographs depicting a fashion shoot which has been commandeered by children, coupled with a hand-drawn typographic style – infusing the new store design with Barnardo’s child-centred philosophy. The message behind the new retail design is that Barnardo’s can compete credibly with other fashion retailers. They now sell desirable, fashionable, hand-picked items – a concept reinforced by the friendly images and affable typography. Not only do shoppers feel that they can trust Barnardo’s, but that it is offering the same quality shopping experience as any of the other stores in Denton Crown North Retail Park as a high fashion charity store.

Barber’s role was to take this concept and develop it further, to work in store. We produced a set of retail graphics based on Barnardo’s own branding colours of black and green, combining the new typeface with their existing trademark font as an extension of their retail brand identity.

In the space of a few weeks, Barber helped turn the 6,000 square foot store – which opened on the 9th August – into a high fashion retail unit where both bargain hunters and fashionistas can discover fashion one-offs and quality homeware.

The high-fashion tone is set inside the store with Barber-Designed patterns and wallpapers, using the Barnardo’s colours alongside a series of distinct tones for different retail areas such as homeware or ladies fashion. Each department has it’s own distinguishing signage with brand walls and a secondary colour palette to help customers subconsciously determine which part of the store they are in. In addition to this Barber also designed co-ordinating price tags and labels, carrier bags and advertising flyers announcing the imminent arrival of the store.

During the weeks leading up to the store opening, visitors to Denton Retail Park were greeted with Barber-Designed large format window graphics, counting down to the grand opening. The store was opened on 9th August by Girls Aloud singer and fashionista, Nicola Roberts who tweeted ” Lovely to see the guys from Barnardo’s this morning. They now have their own fashion superstore for the charity in Denton Manchester. Go see!”

Laura Grant, Retail and Trading Marketing and Media Manager at Barnardo’s, commented:

“What Barber have created for us has surpassed our expectations. They have been a joy to work with and were always on hand to support us throughout each stage of the project; from the environmental and graphic design through to advertising and packaging. This store format is the first of its kind for Barnardo’s so Barber’s expertise and vision were imperative in bringing our ideas and aspirations to reality whilst still retaining the ethos and essence of the charity. The store now rivals other neighbouring mainstream retailers and the feedback from the public has been fantastic.”