Mimakis ‘behind the counter’

Lifestyle shops ‘Arrival/Departure’ and ‘Independent Outlet’ combine retail with on-demand print production

‘Arrival/Departure’ and ‘Independent Outlet’ are so-called ‘lifestyle’ department stores based in Amsterdam. They offer all kinds of ‘lifestyle’ products, including clothing, shoes, gadgets, books, music, skateboards, etc. The interior design and product displays are actually devised and produced by the creative team behind the shops. These ‘lifestyle’ shops also sell prints such as canvas prints, T-shirts and wallpaper direct to the public, either over the counter or via the Internet. In order to do so, the team works with equipment that includes Mimaki solvent, sublimation and textile printers and cutting plotters. The entire process is surprisingly transparent and accessible; the Mimakis are in full view directly behind the counter.

Lifestyle shops

Lifestyle products and printers

The Arrival/Departure shop in Amsterdam-Oost, in hangar 6 of the former KNSM site, handles Mimaki solvent, sublimation and textile print solutions. Owner Aziz Badrane explains: “The combination of lifestyle products and graphics machines in the same shop came about quite by accident. We thought it would be a nice idea to show our customers how T-shirts, canvas, wallpaper etc. are printed. The reactions are really positive and mirror our philosophy. We definitely want to stand out from mainstream clothing and fashion stores.”

Creative with large format

Lifestyle shops Arrival/Departure in particular offers a ‘lifestyle’ concept that attracts specific groups of people. This shop is different in that it works with a lot of limited editions and special imports. Aziz Badrane: “We sell various brand models that are not generally on sale (except in a few shops in Japan and the US).” Similar to the products, the shop interior is focused on ‘lifestyle’. Designer and shop assistant Guido Jelsma comments: “All our assistants are creative individuals. We all introduce new ideas and the main advantage is that we have the machines to implement them immediately ourselves. For instance, we labelled skateboards with the logo/brand name of a shoe manufacturer and used them as a product display for the shoes. We also produce creative wall, floor and window decorations for the shops, using lettering, backlit, canvas and flags.”

Art projects

Arrival/Departure not only designs its own interior, it also takes on projects for third parties. Together with four artists, Arrival/Departure completely transformed two rooms in the Lloyd Hotel for an exhibition on behalf of ‘ELLE-wonen’ (interior design magazine). Guido: “We used the Mimaki solvent printer for the wall decorations and the sublimation printer for the curtains. The cushion covers were printed on the T-shirt printer. And everything was based on the artist’s creative concept. “

Canvas, wallpaper and T-shirts

Arrival/Departure is increasingly taking on small domestic projects, jobs for advertising agencies and photographers who are also based in the historic building. “People know where we are now. Individuals and companies are ordering canvas prints, posters/artwork, T-shirts, mugs and wallpaper. The fact that they have access to a local supplier, who provides a personal service, is considered a definite plus. I feel that the way we sell printed products is much more open and accessible than with a production company somewhere in the middle of an industrial estate. All our customers are given a flyer with details of our range of printed products. It also includes details of our websites, canvasdoekdrukken.nl, behangdrukken.nl and T-shirtdrukken.nl, where custom-made designs for mugs, wallpaper or T-shirts can be developed and ordered online.”