You’ve all read the articles: how the totality of retail will be moving online, how we will eventually receive our Yohji sweaters via branded hanger strapped up to the bottom of a friendly drone. And while we certainly cherish the freedom of the web and joyously utilize its unparalleled power of connectivity, we must always remember the importance of enlivening the senses through physical experience.
Totokaelo is originally from Seattle, an area whose surrounding natural beauty pervades every aspect of daily life. Our first retail home in the city’s Capitol Hill neighborhood certainly reflects that fact through its organic furnishings and abundant flora, a warm glow thrown gently off its white walls. Our recent home in New York, photographer Jay Maisel’s famed former residence at 190 Bowery, provided a connection to a different section of the ecosystem. Housed in a former bank complete with basement vault, its crumbling century-old walls ensured that an overwhelming feeling of time, of life lived, was unavoidable, similar to the effects of a stream slowly rounding off the edge of a rock wall over thousands of years.
While we certainly enjoyed filling such a monumental space with beautiful clothes and bizarre art installations, it was time once again for us to find a new shell to inhabit in New York. We were lucky enough to find ourselves on the very same street as our first foray into the city — Crosby. While we finish renovations on our original space on the very same block, we have elected to imbue the neighboring edifice at number 61 with the essence of Totokaelo. Through great design, experimentation with the often-overlooked, and signature curation, we hope to foster an environment more about living than shopping. Stop by.