By  on June 27, 2007

NEW YORK — When the Stella McCartney flagship at 429 West 14th Street in the Meatpacking District reopens on Thursday after being closed for remodeling, consumers will find a very different store. Gone will be the dirty pink fabric wall with romantic painted images of animals and motifs from past collections. Also gone will be the opposite wall, made of bone-colored ceramic, floral-shaped tiles.

In their place, large architectural petals made of polished edge metal plates will dominate the 4,000-square-foot store, representing the first example of the company's new retail prototype.

The petals fan out across the floor like giant screens, creating three-dimensional divisions within the selling space. Parts of McCartney's collection will be housed within the petals and other garments will hang outside.

The store, which opened in 2002, was redesigned so customers can discover areas through the petals, which will house different stories from the collection. "The petal plates provide a unique backdrop for the clothes," said a spokeswoman.

Collaborating with McCartney, APA Architects, based in London, combined materials in new ways. Copper, brass, oak and hand-beaten metalwork are on display. Marquetry, a detail featured in the dressing rooms of McCartney's stores, has been expanded across a maple wall that stretches the length of the store. It will be punctuated by the inlaid illustration of a cat outlined in polished brass and a bird created from bright metals and mother of pearl.

Shelves are made of English oak, there are copper and brass fixtures and a stone relief terrazzo wall. The store's palette is dirty pink, pale pink and natural whites, similar to the shades McCartney favors in her designs, which contrast femininity with masculinity.

All the changes to the store were completed in a short time. "We were closed for a week," the spokeswoman said. "We work fast."

As the daughter of Paul McCartney, the designer knows something about privacy or a lack thereof. "I personally don't like shops where people are watching me, where there's a pressure to buy or where there's this feeling that you're not dressed properly enough to be in there," she said when the Meatpacking store opened five years ago. The redesign is intended to be more intimate and personal, "encouraging curiosity and privacy by enclosing sections within each area," the spokeswoman said.McCartney, who designs shoes, handbags, fragrances, eyewear, accessories and organic skin care with her own label, also designs a performance collection, Adidas by Stella McCartney. She operates two other stores, a flagship at 30 Burton Street in London and a unit at 8823 Beverly Boulevard in Los Angeles.

McCartney's company is part of the Gucci Group. Like other Gucci subsidiaries, the company declined to divulge sales figures.

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