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Specialty Apparel

Mark Shale

Chicago, IL



Mark Shale opened a fresh fashion store on Chicago's Michigan Ave. The move from one side of the street to the other marks Mark Shale's new approach to retail.

Charles Sparks Co. (Westchester, Ill.) designed the new format, which focuses more on casual clothing rather than solely on business wear — nodding to the overwhelming turn businesses are taking toward casual Fridays — if not a few other days of the week, as well.

The new look men and women are so frequently sporting to work these days is reflected in the store's bold new design, including vibrant geometric rugs, modernist furniture, salon-style fitting-room lobbies — furnished with TVs and even refrigerators — to spoil male shoppers.

Client: Mark Shale Stores, Oakbrook, Ill., and Chicago — Steve Baskin and Scott Baskin, co-presidents

Design: Charles Sparks Co., Westchester, Ill. — Charles Sparks, president and principal-in-charge; Stan Weisbrod, project manager; Don Stone, lighting designer; Fred Wiedenbeck, color, finish materials and furnishings; Jim Meseke, documents


Consultants: Kurtz & Associates, DesPlaines, Ill. (architect of record); Pepper Construction Co., Chicago (general contractor)

Suppliers: Glen Rieder, Milwaukee, and Otema Store Interiors Ltd., Markham, Ont. (fixture contractors); Equus, Tulsa, Okla. (architectural stairway); MK Signs, Chicago (storefront signage); The Harbinger Co., Kennesaw, Ga. (carpet); Masland Contract Carpet, Mobile, Ala. (custom area rugs); Benjamin Moore Paint Co., Montvale, N.J. (paint finishes); Blumenthal Inc., Canaan, Ct. (wallcoverings); LaSalle Glass, Chicago , and Skyline Glass, Chicago (store front); Directional, High Point, N.J.; Knoll Studio, E. Greenville, Pa.; Ted Boerner, San Francisco; and Interior Crafts, Chicago (lounge and fitting-room seating; Knoll Textiles, E. Greenville, Pa. (fitting-room draperies); Henry Calvin, Boston (drapery fabric)

Photography: Michael Roberts, Chicago



MasterClass: ‘Re-Sparkling’ Retail: Using Store Design to Build Trust, Faith and Brand Loyalty

HOW CAN WE EMPOWER and inspire senior leaders to see design as an investment for future retail growth? This session, led by retail design expert Ian Johnston from Quinine Design, explores how physical stores remain unmatched in the ability to build trust, faith, and loyalty with your customers, ultimately driving shareholder value.

Presented by:
Ian Johnston
Founder and Creative Director, Quinine Design

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