Romanian Flavours Store by studio AE, Bucharest – Romania

January 15th, 2016 by retail design blog

Gusturi romanesti – Romanian Flavours
Mega Image, one of the biggest retailers in Romania, opened its first shop under the brand Gusturi Romanesti (Romanian Flavours) in 2015. The store sells a wide array of Romanian food, made after traditional and authentic recipes from all Romania’s regions. Most part of the Romanians spent their childhood in a traditional village. They had the chance to discover the traditional architecture, sculpture, customs, old foods & spices, early in their life.

The store “Romanian Flavours ” brings to the fore the importance of traditions in everyone’s life. The atmosphere of the interior looks through the Romanian traditions, souvenirs from childhood, words no longer used due to the abandon of the traditional objects & crafts. On the facade there are used beech wood panels carved with specific Romanian motifs, for example the symbol of the sun. These are accentuated by a metallic frame in contrast to the wood that will age and crack as time goes by like an old traditional wood house.

In the interior, there can be identified recurrent themes used in the Romanian traditional architecture such as carved wood motifs of the porch, the shelves of old store room, the cellar with its massive wood doors, the barn with the weaving wood motifs. All these elements were reinterpreted in order to correspond to the current contemporary function. The goal was to mark out the materials, techniques of crafting, the motives spread in all the Romanian regions and to exhibit them with the specific food products. The imperfection of the craft was an important part of the project. The sculpture is never perfect, and the wood has its natural vibrancy. The texture of the floor is undefined, with a dark grey – black colour that reminds of the compact earth material floor used in the past. In the wood ceiling there are some missing pieces and the lighting objects find their place in this unfinished wooden grid.

The main surfaces, the walls and the finishes, provide the background for the handcrafted furniture. The juxtaposition of new and old, light and dark, accent and background are intersecting in this interior, and the one who is passing its threshold discovers an authentic Romanian story.

Design: studio AE / Elena Stefanescu-Marcu / Laura Lascar / Andrei Stefanescu / Marius Manea
Photography: Cosmin Dragomir

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