The House of Paul Morelli has moved into a bigger space on Madison Avenue designed by Labo Design Studios to reflect the designer’s heritage.
New York—Fine jewelry brand The House of Paul Morelli has relocated its New York City boutique to a new space on Madison Avenue, only blocks down from its previous location.
The new store is nearly double the size of the last. Adopting a light and delicate color palette, the space features lacquered white wood, satin finish painted walls, and light gray limestone floor tiles.
The goal for the store’s look was to create a neutral backdrop for the jewelry, the brand said, but the overall design of the new space, with help from Labo Design Studio, takes cues from the designer’s theatrical heritage.
Before Paul Morelli started his fine jewelry brand in the 1970s, his family created hand-made, one-of-a-kind theater garments in the early 20th century in what was then the Philadelphia Theatre District.
Today, each Paul Morelli jewel is designed and hand-crafted in the original Walnut Street building that housed the Morellis’ costume studio.
Hearkening back to those beginnings, the main selling area in the new Paul Morelli location is arranged to resemble a stage, the brand said.
Upon entering the store, one sees four arches descending in height that create a natural traffic flow from the front of the boutique to the back. Each arch punctuates a glass partition wall, creating intimate spaces between them that house jewelry displays without sacrificing the store’s overall openness.
The design creates an illusion of a deeper space and encourages the “discovery of jewelry,” in the cases, freestanding vitrines, and the recessed wall vitrines, the company said.
“When I saw the space, and knowing Paul’s roots, I immediately felt we needed to create a sort of theatrical stage design; I remembered the 'Teatro Olimpico' in Vicenza by Palladio and its trompe-l'oeil onstage scenery, designed by Vincenzo Scamozzi, to give the appearance of long streets receding to a distant horizon,” said Raffaella Bortoluzzi, principal architect and founder of Labo Design Studio.
“Here we have brought together the best of Italy and the best of New York to highlight what Paul and his team do best: create and sell beautifully handcrafted fine jewelry.”
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At the back of the store, two perforated grid panels stand next to each other, slightly offset, signaling entrance into the private sitting area.
Lighting, for the brand, is one of “the most critical elements” in its retail space and was used to create a warm and inviting atmosphere that would still showcase the brilliance of the jewels.
While artificial light is used to spotlight jewelry in the vitrines, the company opted for diluted light in the store overall to create an “intimate and exploratory environment.”
The brand said its new, larger store is part of the company’s effort to grow its presence and better showcase its collections to clients.
“In expanding our Madison Avenue store into a space that not only highlights our jewelry creatively, but also feels inviting and light, we are stepping into a new evolution and interpretation of our brand,” said Morelli.
“The homage to my theatrical roots intersects with my Italian heritage in some of the most natural yet unexpected ways throughout the space, and I am so happy to call this our new home in New York City.”