Fred Segal kept its Sunset Boulevard doors open later than usual Tuesday night for a party celebrating the launch of the pop-in installation dubbed Rock ‘n’ Roll Holy Land, designed by MadeWorn founder Blaine Halvorson and done in partnership with Mastercard. The store’s exterior bears touchscreen displays that allow passersby to peruse the MadeWorn merchandise and make purchases — all without even having to walk inside.
“We did this collaboration with Mastercard because they wanted to extend experiential into digital, into touchscreens, and we like anything that’s an experience,” said Fred Segal president John Frierson. “They actually made window shopping real. We love the idea that people can shop 24/7 because we close at 9 o’clock, but Sunset Boulevard does not close.”
The mix of MadeWorn exclusives and other merchandise will change throughout the pop-up’s run depending on the appearances of the different musicians slated to visit the store, including Gene Simmons of Kiss, Def Leppard’s Phil Collen and Sen Dog and B-Real of Cypress Hill. The pop-up is expected to remain at Fred Segal through May 6.
“It’s all based around the music around Los Angeles. It was an homage to Sunset [Boulevard],” Halvorson said of the thought that went into the design of the space, which includes a 50-foot tour base that was cut up into six pieces just to get it into the building, where it was then reassembled.
Offering the touchscreen windows outside allows Fred Segal to carry an even larger assortment than what can be found inside, Frierson pointed out.
“We can reach deeper into our relationships with our brand partners because maybe there’s 20 or 30 styles here [inside]; there can be 300 [in the digital catalogue],” he said. “We could do this with a lot of brands. We could reach into their full inventory…. As a retailer we have to evolve in a way to merge with digital, and this is a way to do it.”
The interactive displays represent the first commercial launch of the technology following a SoHo pop-up in Manhattan in the fall that Mastercard did with Marie Claire and Neiman Marcus.
“We were testing it just to see if people would be interested and as it turns out it was a big hit,” said Mastercard executive vice president of digital partnerships Sherri Haymond. “A lot of people interacted with it.”
Mastercard further refined the process for Fred Segal shoppers, taking learnings from the pilot to streamline the transaction, including the sending of cart items from the touchscreens directly to shoppers’ phones to complete their purchase. The items are then shipped to customers’ homes.
Haymond confirmed Mastercard is in talks with a number of other retailers for use of the technology, which could also be paired with dressing room mirrors, although declined to cite specific companies.