Oct 19, 2015
Retail Design Institute of N.Y. announces winning student design at Annual Iron Design Challenge

Holiday Pop-Up Shop to be held in December with proceeds benefiting DIFFA

Last week, Retail Design Institute New York Chapter (RDI) hosted its annual Iron Design Student Challenge at Steelcase in Columbus Circle. Five teams of students from top New York design schools raced against the clock to create a winning holiday pop-up shop design. Ultimately the Best Design Award went to Team Orange for incorporating Design Industries Foundation Fighting AIDS (DIFFA)’s mission into a creative pop-up store concept and window display.

The winning design will be built in the Siegel-Stockman Showroom in Chelsea as DIFFA’s Gift for Life Holiday pop-up shop and is open to the public for holiday shopping Dec. 2-6, 2015.

“Our Iron Design Student Challenge represents a perfect blend of what the Retail Design Institute is all about – education, mentoring, career development and networking. All of the teams were winners, but it was Team Orange’s schematic that best incorporated both a pop-up retail concept as well as an informative and compelling design narrative. Partnering with DIFFA for this year’s event adds the additional value of supporting a fellow non-profit organization and an important cause,” said Peter Tolin-Baker, president of Retail Design Institute.

During the event, students had two hours to design a holiday pop-up shop featuring products donated by industry suppliers. Each team consisted of three to four students from the Fashion Institute of Technology, LIM College and Parsons School of Design.

The teams were mentored and coached by professionals from design firms and retail brands including: Leslie Ann Chiu, associate principal at Callison; Eduardo Figueroa-Ruiz, designer at CBX; Aya Matsumoto, senior designer at TPG Architecture; Norm Roberts, VP/creative director of FRCH; Kate Russell, senior associate at Gensler: Adam Carmichael, director of store design at Saks Fifth Avenue; Stephanie Dobrosky, manager of international store design of Nine West Group; Megan Gundrum, director of store planning at Hudson’s Bay/Lord & Taylor; Stephen Policano, VP architectural and interior design at Kenneth Cole and Niki Varadi, senior director of global store design at Kate Spade.

The student’s designs were judged on their overall concept for a shop and integration of messaging around HIV/AIDS. The judges were Peter Tolin-Baker, president of Retail Design Institute of New York and principal at PTB Design; Michael Sainato, VP of creative at design Within Reach; Johanna Osburn, executive director of DIFFA: Design Industries Foundation Fighting AIDS; Brian Guze, 2014 Iron Design winner and director of store design/visual at Tourneau, and Ana ‘Madhat’ Pelucarte, co-founder of Pop Up Mob.

Team Orange’s winning design will be displayed in the Siegel-Stockman Showroom located at 126 West 25 Street in New York City. There will be a private Opening Night Reception on World AIDS Day, Dec. 1, from 6 to 9 p.m.; and the Holiday Pop-Up shop will be open to the public from Dec. 2-6, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. All shop sales will benefit Gift For Life and DIFFA, an organization that provides grants to HIV/AIDS organizations across the country.




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