Food Is Fashion: The New Hot Fusion

  • Room: Islander G
Thursday, March 24, 2016: 1:30 PM - 2:30 PM


Debbie Kalisky
Director of Retail Development
Michael Cape
Twist Modern
Paola Marques


Accredited by IDEC 0.1 CEU, AIA 1.0 LU

What is up with food everywhere we look in the hottest stores these days? Locally and internationally, the convergence of food and fashion has given rise to a new retail niche. This is happening at many levels: at the aesthetic level, the visual presentation of food in retail settings is on par with the best in fashion visual merchandising; at the experiential level, where the consumer benefits from a multifaceted shopping adventure where fashion brands are seeking alliances with food and beverage brands to be served and consumed in-store; culminating at the bottom line, where co-branding with strategically compatible food and beverage brands prolongs dwell and sell time, ultimately leading to increased sales. Fuelled by the convergence of several dynamics at play, we will examine what spurred North America’s new love affair with locally sourced, gourmet food. Want to whet your palate? Be in-the-know of this trend while it’s still hot.

Learning Objectives

1. In the current ultra-competitive climate, designers and retailers need to consider strategies that will attract and retain customers in their stores beyond the transaction.
2. Retailers have the opportunity to be more than pure merchants, but also act as in-store hosts.
3. The notion of hospitality within the store setting is creating a new store model for two generations of consumers, Millennials and Baby Boomers, who expect their retailers to deliver superior store experiences.
4. How gourmet food offerings respond to this. We will explain why.

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