Catering to airport hoppers looking for that special something to bring home to their kids, Creative Kidstuff in the Pittsburgh International Airport is an oasis of fun colors, shapes and pictures. And they have toys, too.
The 1400-square-foot store was designed through a collaboration of James Henke Design (Minneapolis), Lami Grub Architects (Pittsburgh) and Carole Howe, the president of St. Paul, Minn.-based CBR Inc., the specialty retail group that operates the store. To lure shoppers in, the team combined a kaleidoscope of colors -- bright purple, green tomato, orange peel, blueberry and rooster red -- with bold geometric shapes and graphics geared to kids. Colorful, undulating floor patterns, bold splashes of color and whimsical architectural elements lead curious shoppers through the space. Wheeled floor fixtures and brightly painted nesting tables provide flexible merchandising for the store's unique toy offering.
The look is definitely childlike, but the store's results are all grown up: Sales have been healthy since its opening last October, and CBR has been awarded 29 "best toy store" awards for its design.
Client Team: CBR Inc., St. Paul, Minn. -- Carole Howe, president; Cynthia Gerdes, president, Creative Kidstuff; Abby Rutchick, vp of merchandsing, Creative Kidstuff Design Team: James Henke Design, Minneapolis -- James Henke, principal
Lami Grub Architects, Pittsburgh -- Susan Lami, principal; Carole Howe, president, CBR Inc. Suppliers: Madsen Fixture & Millwork, Forest Lake, Minn. (fixtures); Sign Innovation, Harmony, Pa. (storefront sign); Metro Floor, Greenwich, Conn. (flooring) Photography: David Neiman, Edina, Minn.