New York-based beauty and skincare brand Glossier opened a pop-up shop at the corner of Broadway Avenue and John Street on Capitol Hill this past May. Its design, like other Glossier shops around the US, imparts elements from the surrounding city to help lend a local feel. For Seattle, that meant nature. Lily Kwong, owner of her eponymous Brooklyn landscape design studio had just five weeks to transform the 1,100-square-foot space into a plant-filled paradise that would both play up the brand’s individualistic, feminine ethos and celebrate the natural wonders of Washington State.
“There is a deep relationship between residents [here] and the outdoors,” Kwong says. “The terrain is a big part of the city that I tried to capture.” To do so, Kwong visited ten different local nurseries and chose plants such as strawberries, Mexican feather grass, and yarrow deep rose pink—all choices inspired by local hiking trails—to spruce up the store (not to mention fill it with a calming earthy smell). The topography of Seattle’s surrounding mountain ranges sparked the idea for Kwong’s moss-covered mountain installation lining the store’s perimeter. To achieve the look she wrapped sticky moss around a wire frame, then planted over it.
Glossier’s shop stands out with its overall white palette, accented with the dramatic greenery and pops of its signature peachy-pink hue. “We captured a part of Seattle’s feministic boldness through installation,” Kwong says. “Women here are empowered and want to create relationships even with strangers who share a common thread.”
The brand’s history and its reputation as a people-powered beauty line that was founded on individuality also played a role in the store’s design. “Into The Gloss, the product, and design emerged from an audience who weren’t front and center. Glossier gave [those] people a platform to talk about minimalistic beauty.” Like the values the beauty retailer was brought up on, the store emerges as a place for self expression.
“There is not enough nature in cities,” Kwong says. “Seattle is an exception. I feel like a big part of my work is bringing plant life to cities. We have an extrinsic relationship with nature; studies show depression and anxiety correlate when plant life is around.” Pop into the Glossier pop up before it closes on July 7 to stock up on the goods (hello, Boy Brow) and to take in its little slice of nature.
Glossier, 200 Broadway E, Seattle; glossier.com