Now that the holiday season is upon us Retail Digital revisits some of the most popular stories of 2011

Pop-up shops are fresh, exciting and can be a great tool for a brand if used properly.

Pop-up shops will spring up in interesting and unexpected locations, cause a storm and then disappear before their hype dies and fashionistas move on to the next big thing.

These stores are temporary and so do not need as much investment or polish as a permanent venture would.

They also allow brands to take risks. It is a perfect concept for a world trapped in the midst of a global economic downturn, which is crippling businesses worldwide. 

Pop-up shops are the epitome of our throw-away and high-speed culture, where fashion moves on quickly. Vacant was the earliest store to start this concept. 

Since then the fashion world has seen a wave of pop-up shops from all retail sectors with varying successes. Pop-up shops were initially set up to create a buzz around niche brands.

It is a phenomenon that has swept the fashion world and slowly moved into the mainstream. Pop-up shops are no longer exclusive to high-end designers or luxury brands.

Ubiquitous brands, such as Marmite and HMV, have adopted the pop-up approach in the past, to test an untried site or shop format. For customers, it adds a sense of excitement to their shopping experience.  

Retail Digital takes a look at some of the best pop-up shops of 2011.   

Tommy Hilfiger

Tommy Hilfiger’s Prep World tour took the pop-up shop concept to a completely new level when the all-American brand built an 800 square foot “traveling beach cottage”.

This store featured navy window shutters, a pink front door, aged shingles and copper gutters to give it the ultimate preppy look.

The interior was a fusion of vintage and modern design complete with an art installation tennis racquet chandelier centrepiece to complete the illusion.  

The temporary boutique was used to showcase Hilfiger’s limited edition preppy range, which included coloured chinos, anchor print dresses and boat shoes. The collection also featured preppy paraphernalia like ‘PrepGammon’ and croquet sets.

The elaborate pop-up shop opened in New York in April and moved across Manhattan before popping up in cities worldwide including Paris, Amsterdam, Milan, Stockholm, Madrid, Belgium, London and Tokyo.

Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton launched a pop-up shop beside its flagship La Croisette boutique in Cannes for the International Film Festival, which took place earlier this month.

The pop-up shop was designed to reinforce Louis Vuitton’s link with the world of cinema and creation. This was reflected in its distinctive Cocktail Party by the Pool and Iconic Evening collections.

The temporary shop also featured an Evening Grand Soir collection, which showcased an array of sparkling gowns, animal print maxis, stunning beaded clutches and exquisitely tailored pieces that you would come to expect from the luxury brand.  

Naomi Campbell

Naomi Campbell opened her own pop-up A-list clothing boutique in April to sell clothes from her Fashion for Relief charity.

The temporary London store opened its doors for one week only and sold outfits from the supermodel’s charity shows, including a Vivienne Westwood Gold Label dress, which Campbell wore on the catwalk.

A host of celebrities, acclaimed designers and luxury brands donated clothes to the store.

Among these items was a Christopher Kane gown worn by Amanda Holden, a Tom Ford suit donated by David Walliams and a red dress which Kim Cattrall wore for her role as Samantha in Sex and the City.

Givenchy, Stella McCartney and Mulberry also added their contributions. All profits from Campbell’s pop-up store went to The Prince’s Trust charity. 

Chanel and Colette

Fashion fans rejoiced earlier this year when two of France’s most-loved brands, Chanel and Colette, teamed up to create a pop-up boutique. The pop-up shop, which coincided with Paris Fashion week, was built on the site of a former garage.

The store showcased key pieces from the luxury brand’s spring/summer collection along with select creations from young designers, which were chosen by Colette. It also featured a Chanel nail bar and a scrumptious Chez Bogato cupcake stand.

There was even a graffiti artist on-site to customise Chanel bags on the customers’ request.    

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