In late July, Off White quietly opened its first New York outpost, the label’s 12th store globally and its second store in North America (Toronto came first). Each store is styled differently and one of the points of difference for the New York store is that it’s been dubbed a gallery not a store.
Called Em Pty Gallery, the front of the building lacks a numbered address and no signage at all except a single brick etched with the name Off White (which we did’t see). Though lacking a name, the store is made open and welcoming through use of an open garage door.
Upon entry visitors are greeted by the sound of chirping birds, which a sales person said change over the course of the day. The sound of nature is reinforced by the trees and leaves that fill the space, similar to the ones Off White designer Virgil Abloh used as a backdrop for his fall 2017 presentation. The woodland forest is contrasted by industrial shelving and cement floors, all designed by Abloh.
The register is contained within a small room fronted by a glass partition not unlike a New York subway booth. The dressing rooms are roomy yet minimalist, marked by white walls, a cement floor and nothing more.
Overall the store feels artful and welcoming, seemingly exuding Abloh’s own engaging personality. It’s noteworthy given New York’s reputation for toughness that Abloh chose to see past its hard exterior and instead focused on its warmth and welcoming nature.
The store includes a full range of men’s and women’s items from the fall collection, as well as special items made just for the store. Prices range from $80 for a set of earrings up to several thousand for some of the more intricate fashion items and accessories.
Fans of Abloh should know that the store also carries all of his collaborative efforts,which will include his upcoming ten shoe partnership with Nike.
True to its artsy nature, Em Pty Gallery will include installations by artists and designers other than Abloh.
The Em Pty Gallery is located at 51 Mercer Street. For more info visit off–white.com. For a point of reference, it’s about a block north of NikeLab’s store on the same street.
Check out some shots from the store below.