Rustic Themed Retailers Go For Reclaimed Oak Flooring
Most of us who are old enough, remember Banana Republic stores as one of the earliest rustic themed retailers. As I remember them, there was some character wood around the cash wrap and displays, but very little anywhere else. (And certainly no reclaimed wood flooring! ) The stores were basically standard mall spaces with some beaten wood and a few pictures of pith-helmeted, monocled chaps that evoked the feeling of a jungle. If you were really easily moved to such fantasies, you might have felt like you were exploring a jungle. J Peterman picked up on the safari theme and managed to, with written stories alone in their catalog, evoke a more genuine spirit of adventure.
Our involvement with rustic themed retailers began in 1995 when we began supplying our reclaimed Antique Distressed Oak for a string of Timberland stores located across the U.S. In 1999 we entered into a supplier relationship with a Canadian retailer’s expression of rugged outerwear, RW & Co, and worked with them on a roll out across Canada also supplying Antique Distressed Oak . But prior to Timberland, we started a relationship with Ralph Lauren Corp. in 1991 that continues to this day. I wouldn’t refer to Ralph Lauren as a “rustic-themed” retailer, but there is a certain ruggedness to the sport of polo and that was the company’s initial theme and name, Polo Ralph Lauren, until 1997. Our flooring is installed on their stores around the world. The Polo Ralph Lauren London flagship store is seen at right.
Several years ago we began supplying Antique Distressed Oak to Soft Surroundings, a company that began as a catalog company that morphed into an online retailer before adding bricks and mortar in 2014. There is nothing rustic in this retailer’s product line of women’s wear and bedding/home items, but our reclaimed wood flooring brings warmth to their stores and contrasts nicely with the whites and off-whites, the “soft”-ness of their products.