Shopping Experience

1-2 days

Discussion / Group / Excursion

Collect / Comprehend

Description

When purchasing garments, the experience is not only defined by interacting with the clothing itself, but also how the garments are presented and the atmosphere created by the specific surrounding environment. The aesthetic factors of the atmosphere are key, as visual stimuli are powerful in creating images and symbols.

This activity aims to create a discussion of alternative ways of presenting clothes and other fashion items that can support more sustainable consumption patterns in stores. Analysis of existing experiences designed for the moment of purchase can be used to reflect on the role of objects, environments and atmosphere. The idea of this activity is to use this reflection to discuss intended shopping experiences created to acquire new clothes, and how these insights can be transformed into desires and aspirations for sustainable fashion.

How might we re-invent the experience of shopping?

Links to Pillar(s)

Cultural - Economic - Environmental - Social

Delivery

STEP 1: INDVIDUAL

Ask students to go to a clothing store and observe - not the clothes, but everything around it: The interior, the racks, the clothing hangers, the mirrors, the tables, the tags, the floor, etc. - everything else than the clothes.


  • How are the clothes and other fashion items presented?

  • What objects or surroundings create fascination and desire for fashion?

This should be documented through photos and sketches.


OPTIONAL: 

The students can be asked to upload the documentation in a predefined format, e.g. 1 A4-sheet, PDF

STEP 2: INDIVIDUAL

Ask then students to go for a walk in the forest (or another place outdoor), observing the atmosphere and the elements around the trees creating that atmosphere and then observing everything else other than the trees.


  • Describe your experience. What do you find intriguing or/and fascinating?

  • What is decisive for this experience?

This should be documented through photos and sketches.


OPTIONAL: 

The students can be asked to upload the documentation in a predefined format, e.g. 1 A4-sheet, PDF


STEP 3: CLASS

Ask students to share observations and facilitate a discussion on alternative experiences for brands to present their clothes, and for customers to engage with clothes in a shopping situation.


  • What objects or surroundings create fascination and desire for fashion?

  • What experience can replace the desire for purchasing a new item of fashion?

  • How to create such an experience – what would the surroundings consist of?

This Activity Links To
  • Repository of atmospheric documentation from students’ visits to respectively clothing stores and nature (if students are asked to share this).

Suggested Readings

Close the Loop. “Retail”

Fletcher, K. 2019. “Wild Dress. Clothing and the natural world”. Uniform Books.

St. Pierre, L. 2015. “Nature’s System”. In: Fletcher, K. & Tham, M. (eds.). Routledge Handbook of Sustainability and Fashion, Routledge, pp. 33-42.

Cho, J. Y. & Lee, E.-J. 2017. “Impact of Interior Colors in Retail Store Atmosphere on Consumers’ Perceived Store Luxury, Emotions, and Preference”. Clothing and Textiles Research Journal 35 (1), pp. 33–48.