Underground in Dalston at LN-CC

Photo by Clark Street Mercantile on Unsplash

Today we’re revisiting a space from late 2010 that was designed by Gary Card for LN-CC (Late Night Chameleon Cafe) as a physical retail space to complement the online store that sells beautiful pieces of designer clothing and accessories. Almost an art installation as well as a shop, the space caught the eye of design awards back in 2012, and was refurbished for Spring 2013.

Housed underground in the basement of a building on a busy road in Dalston, LN-CC manages to pack a lot of eye-catching design into 5,000 square foot. Although the store is open seven days a week, customers have to make an appointment to view the carefully curated collections of clothing, shoes, accessories, books and music. It also incorporates an event and exhibition space, complete with disco ball and vintage sound system.

As is to be expected from a designer who studied theatre design at St Martin’s, the store has a theatrical feel to it, and is an innovative use of underground space with no natural lighting. Customers move through the connected interior rooms, which evoke different moods from minimalist grey to space age shelving for shoes and then more light and airy rooms with hand-crafted wooden structures for clothes display.

N.B. There’s a tenuous link to last week’s post here about the Liberty Department store, as Gary Card was once quoted (in the FT) as saying he goes to Liberty to unwind as he loves that space so much. The design of LN-CC seems to be a world away from Liberty, though maybe the hand-built look of the wooden clothing display structures has filtered through to other interior designs, such as the LeviXLiberty summerhouse featured in last week’s post?