A Nest for Natural Things
It is a show room in one of the trendy shopping malls of the town, Anam Rangs Plaza in Dhanmondi. The name of the shop is Bonoj living up to the name it is a boutique that mainly sells natural dyed fabrics. The target was to achieve a different look within the extreme shortage of space, only about 117sft. That too, a very odd shaped space; with a bulky pillar adding to the confusion with the space layout.
As the shop sells rather uncommon products, there had to be a little change of taste in order to achieve that target of a different look. Through this little show room, the story-board was kept very native and minimalistic with a Balinese flavour. Since the fabrics come with their own hues, the shop had to showcase them and not overshadow the products.
The only counter is in the center of the space, it doubles as a place to lay out the merchandise, as is very typical of our traditional shops. This particular piece is fashioned after the Mahajoni box and shindukh, the traditional wooden safe. To look convincing it has wheels, drawers, and half of the top opens. This very low chest is used so that it doesn't create any visual obstacle in this very space-constrained showroom. To go with it, there are two low triangular tools.
The major display is put on the two big racks; they have two levels in order to make room for as much of the store's wares as possible, inspired from the traditional alna. There are also two long display shelves; one has glass shutter panels and the other is open for flexibility. These two have rollers on both sides like ventilators, again like the traditional Nimat khana. The glass-shuttered one displays the fancy little objects like ornaments. One side of the shop's wall is kept for yardage fabric; there they are kept in rollers fixed on the wall. In the middle of the three rows of rollers on the wall, there is the big mirror; there is a line of small mirrors on the same frame along with the big mirror in order to create an element of interest. On top of these rollers there is yet another rack fixed where some other things can be kept.
Storage is a matter of prime importance in any showroom, with such little space it was a problem as well. There are two long wooden boxes placed on the floor under the rollers, so that the walkway is not obstructed. Also there is some additional storage on the plinth level, which has shutters on a very odd space that needed disguise.
All the wood work is done in matte tobacco brown finish to get the subtle effect. The very little wall that is exposed there is also treated, with textures in neutral shades. As the products that were destined for the shop are mainly the natural dyed fabrics that come with their own subtle hues, the effort was to have those colours stand out and dominate the place. All the pieces have rollers on their sides to appear light but also make them sturdy. Almost all the structures are slim and linear shaped that the place won't look cramped.
The eye sore, the bulky pillar is disguised with a small singadaan style mirror-cum-rack fixed on it, where trinkets are put on display and so the pillar seems to disappear.
For any show room lighting is very crucial. Here, keeping in with the products of natural dyed fabrics, lighting is kept sufficient yet subtle, in order to get a comfortable viewing pleasure. Instead of whitish light, warm colored energy-saver bulbs are used. All the lights are spot lights tucked into the false wooden ceiling.
There is a step up ladder that sits in its niche beside the pillar which proves useful for all the high climbs, doubling as a seat when needed.
Information by Arham ul huq Chowdhury
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