Rumble In The Jungle - MESTIZA New York's Pop Up

PHOTOS BY BRIDGET BADORE FOR THE ASSEMBLIST

PHOTOS BY BRIDGET BADORE FOR THE ASSEMBLIST

There's a rumble in the urban jungle, and it's all in thanks to our nook tenants Alessandra and Louisa of MESTIZA New York. With that in mind, there's no better way to end our weekend by sharing last week's visit to their pop-up shop here in New York City. 

Located at 171 Elizabeth Street, the contemporary cocktail brand launched their pop-up in partnership with designers BETINA, MARTEL, and KGR Collection, who also share in the brand's affinity for Filipino inspired design. Filled with carefully crafted floral arrangements and jungle-inspired accents, the ambiance of the space creates an intimate "shopping safari" experience - as visitors truly have a chance to peruse each of the featured designer's collections in style. 

While today may be the last day to visit the pop-up, we wanted to share Alessandra and Louisa's thoughts on the inception of the shop, how it fits into their big-picture plan, and what role being a part of the Brand Assembly community has played in pursuing a project like this. Check out our recent catch up with the duo below, and head over to The Style Line who also caught up with one of the pop-up's participating emerging designers.

Has a pop-up always been a part of the plan?

We always wanted to do a pop up here in Soho. There’s a lot of foot traffic. Last time we did a pop up we were on the wrong side and we found that there wasn’t enough foot traffic to warrant a big one. That’s why we decided to do Soho - it's one of our favorite neighborhoods and we found that people here are more inclined to shop. We were actually in the neighborhood picking up some garments and just asked this girl, "Do you know anyone who rents retail space?” and she said, “You’ve got to try Parasol Projects!” They’ve been great at helping us coordinate and they’re very useful for us, being that we're free spirits.

How did you curate the brands in the space?

Alessandra: Betina and I are friends from the Philippines, I've known her for years and we were actually together for a wedding a few months ago in Colombia. We were always talking about a pop up, so when she came back to New York, she stopped by Brand Assembly and in our first initial meeting we decided to go full force. She was the one who invited Martel to be a part of this too!

Has anyone asked you anything about the pop-up that's surprised you?

Some people say that the collection looks like it should be thousands of dollars. We love that! We’re trying to be at a contemporary price point, it's really flattering when people say that it's such a great price. We try to make not everything be that expensive. We think the customers see the value.

We love the interior accents, it really adds to the experience! Can you walk us through the process of furnishing the space?

Well this was kind of like a white box when we walked in. It’s very much inspired by the Philippines so we wanted to do a jungle theme - a "shopping safari” if you will. Betina was the one who created all of the floral accents and we think she did a pretty good job, it looks amazing in here. We really wanted a lot of green, a lot of color. One of the designers, Kate of KGR went to the flower district and negotiated some really amazing deals. We’re happy she’s on our team, we like her customers too. Also, all of the furniture here is from Betina’s apartment!

As a Brand Assembly Square nook tenant, how do you think being in the Square helped prepare you to take a step like opening a pop up?

Being in the Square helped us realize the importance of socializing as a way to grow our brand! By having a pop up shop, it allows us to interact with customers and understand their preferences -and drink and have fun!

Do you have any advice or tips for designers looking to pursue as similar project?

You may not be able to find the best retail space so make sure you have amazing PR to get people into the store. Having an event was helpful in bringing people in.

"This is really a part of our business plan, to pop up in different locations throughout NYC so customers can get the chance to know the brand - to touch and feel the clothing. It’s a way for us to really connect with the customer to see what they like and what they don’t like. We are mainly an online destination but we see the value in people coming in."