The apparel industry has long been in the spotlight for its negative impacts to the environment. In addition to the toxic chemicals, water consumption and synthetic materials that go into fashion pieces, the footprint of the retail apparel stores and offices are also in the crosshairs. So when lifestyle brand AETHER committed to a new headquarter in Los Angeles, it took an eco-conscious approach to the project.
The company hired Assembledge+ to manage the renovation of an existing building, rather than building with virgin materials. The team transformed the 953 bow-truss building on Melrose Avenue into a bright, open and flowing workspace that is located only a few blocks from its flagship store on La Brea Avenue.
Throughout the space, the team focused on a feeling of openness with the use of large windows for natural light. The design not only offers passive energy savings, but reflects the company’s central design philosophy of mirroring the outdoors in daily life. The company’s clothing line was developed with the mindset that apparel should perform in all weather conditions, while offering the modern and classic looks that fit into an urban lifestyle.
The AETHER headquarters project resulted in clean lines enhanced by predominantly white interiors that provide an uncluttered space to foster creativity and interaction between employees. Distinct, but unobtrusive, divisions create separate spaces for workstations, a design studio, communal areas, a conference room and a showroom.
Wood details add contrast while relying on natural materials within the space. Outside, a canopy provides shade to help moderate temperatures and is creatively equipped with solar panels that power the entire office. In fact, the solar canopy produces more than the space requires, sending an extra 30 percent back to the grid.
The newest headquarters adds to the retail stores in New York City, a building created from recycled shipping crates in San Francisco, a location in Aspen and a renovated mobile Airstream store dubbed AETHERStream.
Photography by Yoshi Makino