Gen Z connects with brightly illuminated retail spaces

Sept. 20, 2023
The fashion brand Garage attracts Generation Z customers by using lighting to create a unique shopping experience.

Garage is a cutting-edge fashion brand finding success in the retail space. It ascribes its success to a solid understanding of its visually-oriented Generation Z customers and its ability to translate its innovative on-brand vision into a unique shopping experience.

In the U.S., Gen Z consumers are the second largest population group, ages 9-24, at approximately 65 million, not far behind the largest category of 72 million millennials, born between 1981 and 1996. Gen Z’s significant spending power combined with their shopping and spending habits set them apart from other generations.

According to research conducted by A.T. Kearney, Gen Z is the next frontier in retail consumption. They have a strong preference for brick-and-mortar shopping (81% prefer them) compared to a digital experience. Upon entering the Toronto pop-up, customers visually connect with the brightly illuminated merchandise.

Around the perimeter and suspended from the slanted skylight structure are white track fixtures. From the high open ceiling in the central selling area, groups of wire-hung fixtures with white shades hang in parallel rows to direct customers’ views down to the products on display at the rear of the store.The material selection supports the lighting efficacy with Corian tile fixtures, galvanized wall panels, white steel fixtures, dichroic glass, and infinite mirrors, creating an eclectic environment that maximizes the transformation of the existing space. A black and white floor-to-ceiling dimensional mural by Delphine Dussoubs is a fanciful artistic addition and just another example of the store’s understanding of its target market and the aesthetic that reaches them.

This article appeared in the May 2022 issue of Architectural SSL magazine.

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About the Author

Architectural SSL staff

In January 2024, Architectural SSL evolved to LightSPEC. While the name changed, the editorial focus -- writing and developing audience-first content about architectural lighting in the built environment for architects, interior designers, lighting designers and manufacturers, and specifiers of commercial and residential lighting and controls -- remains the same.