Spread across 2000 sq ft at Delhi’s Defence Colony market, Ekaya Thaan brings back the glory of Banarasi textiles, celebrating each piece in the light of its own intricacies. Designed by Delhi-based Studio Lotus, the ‘restored’ layout speaks stories of lost treasures.
When Ekaya Banaras, a contemporary bespoke brand presenting Banaras textiles decided to extend a floor dedicated to the rich soiree of textiles, they decided to stand apart from the regular fabric store setting by tucking away the exquisite fabrics and bringing them to display only on request.
The concept of Ekaya Thaan budded from an idea to bridge the space between designers and weavers. While textiles from Banaras are known to the world, the project has brought bigger vastness in the offerings and has tried to break stereotypes. The store layout, design and offerings were intended to speak stories of lost treasures, new textile developments and ethical business. Therefore, the store design had to encourage each piece to stand on its own. A library to offer more knowledge on the history of textiles will also be launched shortly.
Studio Lotus has collaborated with the Ekaya brand to create an engaging retail experience spread across 3 levels, built over the past few years. Ekaya Thaan space, showcasing the core product of the brand, is the most recent extension of the brand ethos. Breaking the regular layout of a fabric store, the studio has attempted to celebrate each piece of textile in the light of their own intricacies. The space focuses on the interaction experience with the product in terms of ease of browsing and visual delight as well as the brand’s focus on exhibiting their collaborations with eminent designers.
Ekaya Thaan celebrates the richness of the textiles, its glory in a series of display walls set in small pockets. Large tables have been laid to throw open fabric rolls, measure and cut in each pocket. The fabric store is conducive to browsing and architecturally mimics the courtyard experience of a heritage house with a dynamic central gallery that allows for storytelling. This gallery space allows for a changing display, varying between garments, lifestyle products, upholstery etc. and often showcases collaboration with eminent designers.
The gallery is enclosed with cupboards made inside shutters with metal and fluted glass, creating a translucent layer behind which the exclusive range is tucked away. Towards the rear of the store, the customisation area houses an atelier’s table and changing area, giving it a feel of a private tailoring shop. The gallery and the customisation area are separated by MS and fluted glass screen.
The undulating pattern of flutes is consistently rendered throughout the store. Besides glass other materials like stone and timber create a distinct design language. Fluted Indian marble has been used as fins fixed floor-to-ceiling for main display system and the cash desk. Handcrafted glass comes back to anchor the browsing and the retail pockets in the form of large amber glass tube chandeliers over the interaction tables. These have been customized and manufactured by AKSD. The flooring of the store was inherited from the site and has been restored with some additional inlay work in stone and brass to align to the design story.