Critical Thinking

‘… retail design expresses ‘… visual merchandising principles,

Design can be described as an activity or series of activities co-ordinated for
the purposes of a tangible outcome’ (Bruce, cooper,1997 :78) when putting the
word retail design together it creates more description of what it means according
to Pegler (2007) author of Store Presentation & Design describes that
retail design expresses ‘… visual merchandising principles, store layout ,
navigation , branding and window direction'(Pegler, 2007: 7).  Retail space focuses more on the
products that are made available to the customer.  A boutique is an example of this, as it
represents a small shop selling fashionable clothes and accessories. The
twenty century marked the beginning of retail boutiques. According to Mesher
(2010), ‘the rise of the boutique as a small independent store began in the
late 1950s after the Second World War. This period marked the era of freedom
and self-expression. Prior to this, a boutique was a department found in a
large store that provided clothing ranges somewhere between custom-made couture
clothes and cheap mass-produced wholesale clothes’ (Mesher , 2010 : 46).The
first of these revolutionary independent shops in the United Kingdom was called
Bazaar and showcased outfits by the designer Mary Quant, in King road, London.
This period marked the start of the independent retail boutique. The 1980s and
1990s are also recognized as the time where retail designs were expanding.
According to the
book Retail Design: Theoretical Perspectives Peterman
and Kent state, ‘During the 1980s and 1990s, design became a part of a process
dependent on advertising and marketing …’ (Peterman, and  Kent , 2016 : 18). This explains how retail
design had started to bring out development in advertising and marketing.
Retail designs helped create a link between customers and fashion experts.
These customers were actively involved in helping the
retail designers achieve their objectives, for example, Peterman and Kent

‘… As indicated earlier; retail design
originates in an era where consumers were considered to be passive partakers in
the company-consumer relationship’. It is evident that a retail design was
created with the help of consumers in expanding the various fashion boutiques.
New designers including Armani, Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger and
Donna Karan-successfully expanded their businesses as a result of retail design
(Peterman and Kent, 2016: 19).


Retail design helped fashion designers become successful in their