Let the Death of Experiential Shopping Be Its Rebirth

Fashion has a tendency to suffer from collective amnesia. Trendy but questionable concepts tend to die a quiet death in order to free the industry from embarrassment of unfulfilled promises. One of these silent casualties is “experiential shopping.” The term came in vogue earlier in the last decade when the fashion industry decided that customers wanted more from stores than a convenient location, a cool interior, an assortment of desirable product, and great customer service. The specter of e-commerce was brandished before retail executives that spurred them into a do-or-die frenzy. Lounges, live events, interactive art, virtual reality changing rooms, digital mirrors were touted as remedies for failing brick-and-mortar retail. Needless to say, only retail conglomerates and corporate brands with deep pockets could afford to invest in such expensive toys.


Eugene here. I am opening a store in Atlanta with my good friend Lauren Amos, called ANT/DOTE. I can finally reveal my new role as the store’s director. It’s a new and very important chapter in my life, one that’s been in the making for years. I wrote about the store below, but I wanted to add a personal note to say how incredibly exciting and interesting it has been to work on this project. I think that deep down every critic, as a tastemaker – and let’s face it, criticism is in part tastemaking – fantasizes about opening a store. I know I have. In a way a store is another way of testing one’s position, one’s ability, prowess, determination, but also one’s limitations.

As always, I would be nowhere without you, without the StyleZeitgeist audience, without likeminded people. I hope you come on this new ride with me. We are ANT/DOTE.


If you’re a frequent StyleZeitgeist reader, it’s likely that you live in a city or often travel to one so it’s fair to assume that hand sanitizer has become a common accessory in your life.