Haight Ashbury RVCA Store – A Rare Example of a Tasteful Concept Store

24 Jan

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When I first walked into this RVCA store at the corner of Haight and Ashbury Streets, I noticed that there is something unusual about this clothes store. The design of the interior is quite like a typical Hollister Store, with the dark background, a lounge at the center, and a grid-like screen behind the cashier station.

But unlike Hollister, this store has incorporated a gallery in the back, a merchandise and shelves showcasing books and pamphlets made by non-mainstream artists. At one of the corners, there are video screens that are broadcasting some skateboard videos, possibly the skateboard team sponsored by RVCA. You can actually put on a headphone and listen to the video.

Just like the store, clothes there have pretty unique design. They are not only closely associated with the larger concept of skateboard and surf culture, but they also injected local elements such as local scenery such as the Golden Gate Bridge. They also have their own magazine with amazing photos and models showcasing their clothes. Just when you think there is it for all the art and gallery, there is an installation about mixing media at their corner display window. Images are actually projected onto disconnected televisions of the last generation. The manipulation of the subject’s functionality is so iconic and beautiful at the same time.

In case you have not figured out their concept of the store by now, it is about stretching the boundaries of traditional action sport apparel. I see the mixing of different art mediums within the store as ways for potential patrons to experience the lifestyle of the surfers or skateboarders who wear these outfits. The store actually puts up an art show to help its patrons understand the story of the clothes they are going to wear. I definitely got an education of RVCA by visiting their store.

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corner of haight st. and ashbury st., san francisco – 5:09pm, jan 22, 2013

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7 Responses to “Haight Ashbury RVCA Store – A Rare Example of a Tasteful Concept Store”

  1. Erik January 24, 2013 at 6:43 am #

    Definitely a cool concept. Makes me think of Urban Outfitters mixed with Hollister & Zumiez. I think the trend in retail is heading to and already there in some cases, is to mix a “hangout” atmosphere and selling whatever product you have. It will form some unique partnerships from what I can tell. It makes places in downtowns, main streets, and cities more appealing to develop since they are based on the unique experience already.

    On a side note, I need to get to San Francisco ASAP!

    • kam January 25, 2013 at 12:08 am #

      Thanks for the visit! I totally agreed with you. I like the store a lot first because I just like skateboard clothes, somehow these skateboard merchandise all pretty high level of design, especially their logos. The fusion with arts just elevates the store to a different level. I am not sure if that helps them sell more stuff, but I don’ think they want everyone to be wearing their clothes anyways. It was nice that during my “visit” to the store, the staff were very nice and chilled about me taking photos of the store! It was definitely a cool experience being there.

  2. Sartenada January 24, 2013 at 10:49 pm #

    Good photo report from which I learned something new to me.

    • kam January 25, 2013 at 12:13 am #

      Thanks for the visit 🙂

  3. Max July 8, 2013 at 2:23 am #

    Good post. I am going through a few of these
    issues as well..

  4. J. Matt January 12, 2017 at 12:12 pm #

    Looking to see what the web stain on this project was and came upon your post. I know it’s a dead thread but thanks— I was the designer on this store working with the owner of RVCA, PM Tenore. I appreciate the good response!

    • kam January 12, 2017 at 1:08 pm #

      Thanks for visiting the site! The store is a cool concept store. Great job!!

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