W.O.W. Storefront

Newton Highlands, MA

About .......................................................................................

Facade for women's boutique
Completion: 2004

Viewing
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  • WOW CLOTHING - STORE FRONT
  • WOW CLOTHING - FRONT VIEW
  • WOW CLOTHING - APPROACH
  • WOW CLOTHING - ELEVATION
  • WOW CLOTHING - OPERABLE PANEL AND FRAME DETAIL
  • wow_sketch_01
  • wow_sketch_02
  • wow_sketch_03

Credits   ..............................................................................................................

  • Project Team
  • Hansy Better Barraza
  • Anthony J. Piermarini
  • Charles Austin
  • Jason Frantzen
  • Bu Kyung Kim
  • Code Consulting
  • Albert Costa Architects
  • Structural Engineer
  • Zerounian Associates
  • Construction
  • NG Brothers Construction Inc
  • Photography
  • John Horner

Overview   ..............................................................................................................

The project was to outfit a new facade for the W.O.W. woman’s clothing store. The challenge was to create a new identity for the building, while at the same time having the system be easily removable upon the changing of the retail lease. The store markets the work of local artisans, fabric painters, and clothing designers as an alternative to high-end boutique shops. The merchandise and image promoted by W.O.W. is eclectic and fun—demonstrating a healthy appreciation for craft and a sense of humor. The storefront seeks to capture this spirit and make a sensually constructed architectural artifact.

Working with a structured polycarbonate panel typically found in greenhouse construction, a new layer was added to the existing generic shell. To address the commercial strip, the panels wrap the two protruding faces of the building and then liberate themselves from the building mass, animating the re-entrant edge of the parking lot. The layer of new cladding serves as a sun-diffuser for interior, reducing heat gain in the summer, reorganizes the display window, creates a clearly identifiable signage system, and defines a perimeter fence. The versatile cladding system employs notched polycarbonate sheets within irregularly shaped frames that allow for discreet views into the space. The panels gang together to create the many different, seam patterns, various apertures for the display of goods and animate the facade with changing moiré patterns of reflected light. The panels can also be lifted as a temporary awning and for cleaning the existing glass beyond.