Tastemakers, actors, and interior designers were on hand to celebrate the opening of the Melrose Avenue store
Words by ELIZABETH VARNELL
Adrien Brody, Elaine Welteroth, Rashida Jones, Jesse Williams, Ashley Park, Riley Keough, and Olivia Wilde. PHOTO: Phillip Faraone.
Banana Republic gathered a host of creatives at its first standalone store for the brand’s just-launched BR Home line of furniture and art on Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles on Thursday, September 21. Inside the 5,000-square-foot space, built in collaboration with architectural designer Stefano Casati, guests including Olivia Wilde, Riley Keough, Rashida Jones, Adrien Brody, Jesse Williams, Quincy Brown, Ashley Park, Elaine Welteroth, and Martyn Lawrence Bullard got a first look at the new designs, accessories, photographs, and artwork inspired by global travels, traditional craftsmanship, and far-flung artisans. Casati dreamed up the space’s innovative exterior, a midcentury-influenced structure made of gold-toned steel and created using AI elements and modern technology.
Inside the new store, located across the street from a Banana Republic ready-to-wear boutique stocking the muted, paired-back designs synonymous with the line since its Bay Area inception, stood a selection of furniture for living, dining, and sleeping sourced from both stateside communities and countries across the globe. Comfort and a feeling of adventure informed the designs, as did the idea of Gesamtkunstwerk, the notion of creating comprehensive artwork encompassing the building, its interiors, and even the clothes worn inside.
Hand-knotted rugs created in Morocco’s Middle Atlas mountains joined pendant lamps made with hand-formed clay beads created by women in KwaZulu Natal in South Africa, and solid oak dining tables crafted in Vietnam plus cast aluminum benches handmade in India added streamlined silhouettes to the space. Naturally, guests including Park posed on the sculptural beds, including a low-slung upholstered version created by artisans in North Carolina. A warm palette of earthy hues, natural wools, polished marble, open-grain woods, and hand-forged iron inside combined with the store’s golden shell created a subtle luminosity that continued to glow late into the night.
DJ Mei Kwok. PHOTO: Phillip Faraone.
Banana Republic interior.
Elaine Welteroth and Rashida Jones. PHOTO: Phillip Faraone.
Martyn Lawrence Bullard. PHOTO: Phillip Faraone.
LEFT: Madison Pettis. RIGHT: Leo Chan. PHOTOS: Virisa Yong.
Sandra Stangl and Olivia Wilde. PHOTO: Owen Kolasinski.
LEFT: Jesse Williams. RIGHT: Ashley Park. PHOTOS: Virisa Yong.
Nick Fulcher and Natasha John. PHOTO: Virisa Yong.
Adrien Brody. PHOTO: Donato Sardella.
Mia Moretti and DJ Mei Kwok. PHOTO: Virisa Yong.
Feature image: PHOTO: Phillip Faraone.
September 25, 2023
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