Jason Markk’s new Japan store embodies a sleek, fresh look, designed by Brinkworth in collaboration with Wilson Brothers. It reflects the brand’s offer: the cleaning, repair and maintenance of sneakers.

Key features

An overall clean look has been created for the first-ever Asia location of Jason Markk, a premium shoe care brand that originated in Los Angeles. The store is situated in Tokyo’s Harajuku district. The fresh, sleek aesthetic begins at the building’s white-clad façade which sports a simple brand sign made of stainless steel. Inside, Brinkworth and Wilson Brothers tied the brand’s  Californian roots with the Japanese locale. 

Lighting makes the small space appear larger, with mirrors covering the ceilings to further ‘expand’ the space. Locally sourced timber was used to construct cubbies that line the walls. Here, shoes are stored from arrival through treatment in custom-made, adjustable height mobile trays. White tiles contour the walls behind the stainless-steel counter – both materials that create visual continuation with Jason Markk’s exterior.

Frame’s take

Jason Markk’s community is made up of so-called ‘sneakerheads’ who prize the limited-release shoes that make up their collections. With that comes the priority to always have a ‘fresh’ pair of shoes, and care and repair is necessary to keep them in pristine condition. With 45 per cent of consumers saying they are more likely to repair things than replace them, according to a recent EY Future Consumer Index, stores like Jason Markk are right in line with consumers’ priorities. It’s a consumer trend sure to influence retail interiors.

Based on the premise of maintaining what one already owns through cleaning and repair, the polished and fresh aesthetic of the brand’s third space matches exactly what it creates for its clientele. In an environment where customers bring their prized shoes with the expectation that they return in a fresh condition, creating a space that reflects that expectation is logical. While functional aspects like the wooden shoe cubbies are consistent across Jason Markk locations, an added level of minimalism adapts this location to local aesthetic tastes.