Bing does have form when it comes to fit-outs, and Good Form isn’t his first retail space either. Most recently, he’s made some ceramic tiles for New Zealand apparel retailer Kowtow’s first store in Wellington in collaboration with interior architect and designer Rufus Knight.
Bing says he views interior work as an extension of his long-standing interest in carpentry.
For the Good Form fit-out, he looked to gallery spaces for inspiration: “They need to be flexible and modular.”
“We had a holistic approach. We knew it was going to be a staged fit-out so we didn’t design it piecemeal,” he says.
Bing wanted the pavilion to delineate Good Form’s space without cutting it off, creating a multifunctional area. It’s psychologically delineated from the Mr Bigglesworthy space, and creates a sense of intimacy underneath the shop’s high stud.
The birch plywood displays and linings installed against the main shop’s walls are both functional and utilitarian, Bing says.
“[The plywood] is organic and it’s got a bit of feature to it, but not so much feature that it creates noise,” Bing says. “It’s a fairly utilitarian backdrop for furniture and fittings.”
He’s pleased that what he’s created at Good Form and Mr Bigglesworthy will be scaleable “without succumbing to momentary fads of fashion”. Bing describes the Eagles’ business as being about “true modernity”.
Despite its beauty, Dan Eagle says the new fit-out isn’t just an exercise in art for art’s sake.
“Rents are going up and people are accepting of online retail, so if you’re going to have a big store like this, you have to be careful and put a lot of thought into the retail experience,” says Dan Eagle. “It’s got to offer something online doesn’t. It’s got to earn the investment you’ve put into it back.”
“Just to get people through the door now, you’ve got to offer them an experience you can’t get online.”