Rooshad Shroff designs Christian Louboutin store
Mumbai-based architect on designing the cult shoe brand’s new store
When Mumbai-based architect Rooshad Shroff designed the embroidered wooden tiles for the Christian Louboutin store in Horniman Circle, the continuation of their collaboration would prove to be seamless. The 32-year-old Shroff has most recently designed the French luxury footwear label’s new store in Bangkok. “Christian was very happy with my involvement in the Mumbai space and asked me to be the design architect for the Bangkok store,” says Shroff, who started designing for Louboutin after his friend recommended him to 212 Box, the design company that creates the brand’s stores the world over.
For the Bangkok store, Shroff focused on Thai tradition while retaining the brand’s French aesthetic. “There are certain materials used by the stores globally; for example, they use leather cladding for the men’s room, so working within those parameters I embroidered yantra tattoos (very unique to Thailand) on leather, which was laid on the wall.” In fact, the tattoos are also a reference to Louboutin’s unique service, which allows customers to get their tattoos embroidered on their shoes, combining both the brand and the city’s ethos.
Educated at Harvard, Shroff comes from a family of architects, ie, his father, mother, brother and sister-in-law. “Growing up, it was something I was exposed to a lot,” he says. But his style focuses more on craftsmanship and experimenting with furniture. “I’m interested in design overall,” he says. “I’m doing architectural products and display windows for luxury brands and I quite enjoy that mix.” The architect is also looking at traditional carpentry, methods of joinery and how to use old techniques in a more contemporary way. For example, the idea behind his furniture without screws and bolts is so that they can be dismantled and taken anywhere. “It’s easy to transport and it’s sustainable also,” he says.
Right now though, fresh from the thrill of designing the Louboutin store, Shroff is happy with the results. “I really enjoy the creation of different materials. We don’t source the materials but they are something we develop. It’s a huge part of my practice to customise, and this store was the perfect opportunity and platform to showcase that.”