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7 February 2020

Author: The Future Laboratory

Image: Studs, US

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This week: Lego's 2D play, luxury skincare for pets, mindful tidying, elevated eating in Osaka, and Nordstrom's resale store.

Lego Dots, House of Dots designed by Camille Walala

1. Lego promotes analogue play with 2D Dots

Denmark – Lego is experimenting with the mindful nature of arts and crafts with its new 2D tile-based play concept, Lego Dots.

Featuring shaped boards and colourful tiles, the range offers a canvas for children to express themselves through creative play. With the new products, Lego has swapped its traditional 3D blocks for 2D tiles that can be used to evoke different moods, with shapes such as facial expressions, musical notes, planets and stars.

To celebrate the launch, Lego is collaborating with artist Camille Walala on an interactive installation at Coal Drops Yard in London’s King’s Cross. The House of Dots installation immerses children in a colourful environment made from over two million Lego bricks, while also allowing parents to get hands on and express themselves using Lego Dots.

Recognising the need for conscious play, parents are increasingly looking beyond digital platforms and towards analogue toys that allow for more creative play, as recently seen with the Toyi play kit.

Amo Petric. Branding by Site Ma

2. Amo Petric brings pampering to pooches

Denmark – Amo Petric is bringing skincare and beauty to pets with a collection of products made from natural ingredients.

Developed with a focus on the positive effects of plant extracts and antioxidant ingredients, Amo Petric's formulas are safe and effective for use on pets, with products including a paw soother and wrinkle balm. Other products have been created for specific petcare needs, such as tackling ear mites.

Recognising that Millennials, in particular, are willing to invest in premium products for their pets, Amo Petric has positioned the range in a similar way to beauty brands, with packaging that imitates face serums and lip balms. The brand is also showing its dedication to pet wellbeing by donating a percentage of its profits to animal adoption charities.

As we uncover in our High-end Pets market, affluent Millennials in particular are increasingly delaying parenthood, or eschewing it altogether, to instead spend money on their furry friends.

Open Spaces

3. Open Spaces is a DTC brand for mindful tidying

US – Open Spaces is encouraging people to tidy their homes – using its storage solutions – as a new form of wellbeing.

Post-Marie Kondo, the brand is highlighting how burnout from work and daily demands can be manifest in the home as clutter and untidiness. In response, Open Spaces is positioning tidying as a mindful part of domestic living with a series of home storage units, shelves and storage sets for kitchens and bedrooms.

The direct-to-consumer range is supported by a series of online tidying guides curated to suit a variety of personality types. Tapping into people’s desire for a sense of control in the home, while also giving them time to focus on friends, loved ones, hobbies and rest, Open Spaces wants its storage products to help make the home a haven. ‘When a rising sensation of burnout began to encroach on our wellbeing, home became a counterpoint to our busy world – a sacred space to focus on the most fulfilling aspects of our daily lives,’ reads its website.

As we explore in our Home Cleaning Market, glossy domestic influencers and design-led, eco-friendly start-ups are increasingly positioning tidying up as an act of wellbeing.

4. Louis Vuitton is elevating eating in Osaka

Japan – Louis Vuitton is delving further into the hospitality business with the opening of a café and restaurant at its new flagship boutique in Osaka.

With consumers increasingly spending on experiential luxury, LVMH is expanding its luxury offer by branching out into hospitality. The open-plan Le Café V is on the top floor of Louis Vuitton’s new four-level flagship store in the city, and features a menu by Japanese chef Yosuke Suga, as well as an adjoining bar and terrace. The opening comes as spending on gourmet food and fine dining rose by 6% in 2019, according to the recent Altagamma Worldwide Luxury Market Monitor by Bain & Co. Jean-Jacques Guiony, chief financial officer of LVMH, said: ‘We think that so-called experiential luxury is something that will be important in the future.’

For more on high-end dining and experiential retail, explore our luxury sector where we reveal the nascent trends and insights shaping the industry.

Le Café V at Louis Vuitton, Osaka, Japan
See You Tomorrow resale store by Nordstrom

5. Nordstrom future-proofs with pre-loved fashion

US – Nordstrom’s new initiative See You Tomorrow will offer second-hand clothing sourced from its own returns and damaged items.

Running with the tagline 'Give your gently worn pieces a new future', it will feature brands such as Burberry, Thom Browne, Isabel Marant and Off-White. The retailer’s move into second-hand selling will draw from multiple sources: not only will it feature items returned by customers or damaged on the shop floor, it will also sell products sourced by Yerdle, which handles Patagonia and Eileen Fisher's resale.

Tapping into sustainability, it will also encourage shoppers to seek more unique items. As Olivia Kim, vice-president of creative projects at Nordstrom, notes: ‘The curated shop experience is becoming quite ubiquitous with retail because the world has become quite small and everybody has access to the same stuff. So the question is, what are things you can do that show a point of view to your customers that’s different?'

Read our Pre-loved Premium listicle to discover how luxury brands are introducing circular retail concepts.

To future-proof your world, visit The Future Laboratory's forecasting platform LS:N Global for daily news, opinions, trends, sector specific insights, and strategic toolkits.

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