It’s not every day that a barn from the 1850s is brought to the heart of New York City, but that’s just what Filson has done to bring a taste of the Pacific Northwest to its new flagship on Union Square.
The Seattle-based outdoors brand is opening a 6,000-square-foot store at 876 Broadway on Nov. 9, just a few blocks up from Union Square Park. The store joins a smaller unit on Great Jones Street that Filson has operated for the past four years. And the centerpiece of that store will be the repurposed antique barn from a hay and cattle ranch in Oregon.
“The Great Jones location has been positive for us and we wanted to test the waters before establishing a larger footprint,” said Alex Carleton, Filson’s chief creative officer. “In the last four years, we’ve turbocharged the brand with a women’s capsule, more outdoor merchandise, more spring/summer merchandise and a workwear line. The business is growing and we weren’t able to showcase it all on Great Jones.”
Carleton said the brand “window shopped for locations in New York” for a flagship for some time until finding the space on 18th Street next to ABC Carpet & Home. He was especially attracted to the double-height interior of the space, which allowed Filson to bring the barn to New York.
Other elements in the store that speak to the brand’s roots in 1896 in the Pacific Northwest include a 14-foot, chainsaw-carved wolf sculpture by Jeffrey Samudosky, a 3-D, wood-carved, wall-mounted sculpture reminiscent of Northwest indigenous carvings by Aleph Geddis, and a 12-foot-by-4-foot glass piece by David Field of mallards in flight.
The flagship will feature a women’s shop on the upper mezzanine, its largest to date, and will also offer the FRD apparel for the first time. FRD stands for Filson Restoration Department, an initiative where the brand sells vintage apparel pieces that have been restored. Only 25 pieces in total of these one-of-a-kind items from the 1930s to 1960s will be offered at the store and will retail for $375 to $950. Among the pieces will be wool, oil tin, dry tin and cotton flannel shirts, safari jackets and Alaskan guide shirts.
Carleton said that with the exception of a few pieces offered at the brand’s flagship in Seattle, the FRD collection will only be sold at the New York flagship.
Carleton said that when the flagship opens, the Great Jones store will be converted to an “experimental space. We have a short list of different concepts to make it interesting,” he said.
Overall, Filson operates 18 other stores around the country and Carleton said that this flagship is the major focus for the foreseeable future.
“We fully expect the Filson New York flagship to quickly become a destination shopping experience for people to see, touch and feel Filson products in-person and to get a sense of our Seattle roots,” said Steve Bock, the company’s chief executive officer.