Filson Adds Urban Edge for NYC Store

Best known for its hunting and outdoors apparel, the brand has set up shop on Great Jones Street in the NoHo section of Manhattan.

The Filson store on Great Jones Street in New York.

Filson, best known for its hunting and outdoors apparel, is the latest store to set up shop on Great Jones Street in the NoHo section of Manhattan. The 1,800-square-foot space will open on Friday on 40 Great Jones Street between Lafayette and Bowery Streets. It will be the brand’s first freestanding store on the East Coast.

This story first appeared in the May 7, 2014 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

“If you combine New York and Brooklyn alone on our e-commerce Web site, the region has the biggest customer base,” said Alan Kirk, the brand’s chief executive officer. “We are very optimistic that this store will do very well for us.”

The unit will offer outerwear, shirts, bags, watches and bikes, all of the retailer’s bestsellers.

The space was designed by the architecture firm Heliotrope, and was created to have an urban-meets-outdoors feel. The entire back of the store has a living wall, designed by Satoshi Kawamoto, replete with plants decorating the space, with vintage Filson outerwear pieces and bags camouflaging between the fern, moss and aloe vera plants. A side wooden wall — made from vintage pine taken from the old Domino Sugar factory in Brooklyn — has hammered steel pegs with Filson bags, like the best-selling classic briefcase and 72-hour travel bag, hanging on them.

“When going into this new space, we really thought that it needed to be different from our other Northwestern stores,” said Kirk. “Our customers out there are hunters and outdoorsman from Washington and Alaska. We didn’t think that was right for New York — what we did maintain is the destination factor.”

Indeed, the space — which lies left of a fire station (and a soon-to-open 3.1 Phillip Lim store) — is a place of discovery, Kirk said. A place “hidden for customers,” and a destination for them to find, was the aim.

And a store they can hang out in.

The vintage sofas will be available for customers to lounge on, and complimentary beverages will be served. A shuffleboard sits in front of the hang-out area for customers to play while shopping.

Asked if there were any plans for further expansion, Kirk said that he was “confident the store would do well.” So well, in fact, that a flagship could open in New York City in the near future, he said.