In Naples, there is a footwear and clothing store that expertly blends British soul and Neapolitan heart. What is the reason why it is so intriguing and how can you mix two styles without risking the chaos effect? The guys at FADD Architects explain it to us

There is a curious trend that has been gaining more and more ground for some time: it is the passion for the nostalgia effect. A mood started in the virtual world of TikTok and Instagram and supported by a social community increasingly inclined to chase situations, atmospheres, sensations that invite you to travel through time. Even just for the short duration of a short video.

This is a much less ephemeral trend than it may seem: it is far from mere stylistic emulation and the sole search for 80s-90s trends for fashion and 60s-70s for design  (although these are also going crazy on digital channels).

It is a way of giving space to sensations that makes those who immerse themselves feel good, and it is a trend that is also being appreciated off the screen. Even infecting consumer habits and inaugurating a real 'nostalgia market'.

This Officine Napoli store tells it well, located in the heart of the Chiaia district, in via Calabritto, and designed by the team of professionals from FADD Architects, who successfully created a point of sale with a specific hybrid identity capable of awakening sensations.

Reasoning with two opposing styles - the clear classicism of the display structures and the contemporary mood of the accessories - the FADD Architects team has harmoniously shaped a nostalgia effect for the clothing and footwear boutique that recalls the traditional English shop windows, lacquered in blue, giving at the same time an aura of modern elegance.

The colour is undoubtedly the central element of the project: the resin floor, in neutral tones, enhances the setting, while the vault covered in Danish bricks Petersenadds a touch of authenticity. To amplify the sensation of spaciousness, the two short sides are covered in mirror, creating the illusion of an infinite gallery.

Inside a building on two levels, the ground floor houses a gallery about twenty meters long with barrel vaults, dedicated to the men's exhibition, while the lower floor houses the one dedicated to women.

The blue staircase then invites you to go down to the lower floor, where a long mirror wall expands the space, contrasting with the brick wall which houses light steel shelves.

The path leads to a more intimate and welcoming space, characterized by wooden paneling and a steel cabinet.

British soul and Neapolitan heart: how to combine two very different styles without risking the chaos effect?

FAAD Architects: "Elegance, craftsmanship and classicism are present in the two worlds. Both in London and in Naples there are great master craftsmen. Our design inspiration comes from here."

Even in terms of shapes, the mix is interesting: linear rigor and softness of the arches. How did you approach the two identities?

FADD Architects: "We deliberately sought a contrast between classic forms, also inspired by the pre-existing barrel vault, and more modern lines, evocative of contemporaneity".

What is the client's initial need?

FADD Architects: "The client wanted a welcoming and unconventional environment, with a particular focus on an immersive exhibition. We aimed to create an international atmosphere with a nostalgic appeal, but with a touch of modernity".

Intense blue and warm shades: a winning match. What was the role of colors? And that of matter?

FADD Architects: "The blue was born a bit by chance. A sketch of the furniture was made with a blue marker and from there the intuition to lacquer the furniture in this color which also recalls the colours Neapolitans. The material is important for us especially in combination with the lighting that makes the spaces vibrate".

How did you work on the lighting project?

FADD Architects: "The opening of old skylights guaranteed natural daylight, creating a connection with the outside. For artificial light, we worked on several >levels, taking advantage of indirect light to create atmosphere and punctual light to highlight the products".

You are a trio: do you divide the design roles?

FAAD Architects: "Although we are three founding partners, our current team has six members. We collaborate intensively on all phases of the project, but each of us is focused on a specific area: Concept, project development and execution."