Urban Agency

Orla Kiely


Orla Kiely’s flagship store in New York is a 215m2 boutique situated on the ground floor of a 19th-century manufacturing building in the landmark area of Soho. The 7.5m x 28m long space is divided lengthways into two parts; an open plan area that can be used for catwalk shows or exhibitions, and a series of domestic-scale rooms that house Kiely’s signature collection of bags, homewares, stationery, beauty products and wallpaper designs. The spaces are arranged as a 1:1 cross-section of a doll’s house, acting like a stage set for customers to play out their ambitions of creating an ideal home, complete with original Orla Kiely designs. The modern, interchangeable interior street space allows for theatrical events and unusual displays, while the backstage service rooms are integrated into the doll’s house. Making the customer feel comfortable is a priority in retail design and so the spaces are proportioned with familiar dimensions relating to a typical home. The cabinetry is designed in modules of 450mm and 750mm to correspond with seat and desk heights, while the interior spaces have ceilings of 2.4m as in a typical living room or kitchen. All of the furniture was manufactured in Ireland and shipped stateside, representing a tour de force of Irish design abroad.

Project: Shop Design
Size: 215 m²
Location: New York, USA
Client: Kiely Rowan PLC
Team: Architecture Republic,
Type: Commission
Status: Completed September 2011

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