What We Saw
The Sight Unseen Shape Shop at Creatures of Comfort

PHOTOS BY MARK IANTOSCA

By the close of Sight Unseen’s four-day pop-up during the Noho Design District last year, we’d come to realize a few things. One: that we quite enjoy being shopkeepers — the merchandising of objects, the banter with the public, the satisfying swipe of each credit card through our handy Square readers. And two: that four days was not nearly enough. As we watched the objects we’d put so much effort into procuring move on to more permanent retail homes, we felt a vague sense of deflation, almost like a break-up, and we immediately began plotting for pop-up number two. Never, though, did we dream what would happen next: We were approached by Jade Lai, owner of the impeccably curated Creatures of Comfort store in New York and Los Angeles, to create a Sight Unseen pop-up in the gallery space of her New York store, which had previously played host to temporary outposts from the likes of Confettisystem, Textfield, and the Japanese housewares shop Playmountain. After months of planning, we finally debuted the Sight Unseen Shape Shop this Tuesday at a blowout party.

Our inspiration for the Shape Shop came from both the high — our appreciation for things like Constructivism, Memphis, and the Bauhaus — and the low (who doesn’t love a triangle?). For the merchandise, we scoured the blogs for little-known gems, like Cincinnati-based designer Andrew Neyer’s shape-adorned Watch Clock, and also went back to many of the same artists and designers we’d worked with in our first pop-up, asking them to propose pieces that either took the form of or were decorated with basic geometric shapes. We also developed two mini-installations within the shop, one of a selection of shapeless blobjects and the other of geometric vintage oddities pulled from the personal collection of artist Jason Rosenberg. The results, which we’re previewing in the slideshow at right, are beautifully designed, ridiculously covetable, and most of all, they make us really, really happy. We hope they do the same for you.

The Sight Unseen Shape Shop at Creatures of Comfort, 205 Mulberry St, New York. Now through May 6.

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For the Sight Unseen Shape Shop, we gathered the geometry-obsessed work of 30 designers who hail from Los Angeles to London. At the heart of the shop are three tables — a triangle, a circle, and a square — cut from raw OSB and washed in gray paint, designed by the talented Brooklyn firm The Principals.

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The Shape Shop features a mix of existing and brand-new products, as well as new iterations of old designs commissioned especially for our shop, like these beautiful hand-painted leather pouches by Baggu. Behind them are gold-plated rings by the London designer Gemma Holt and one of the RO/LU Shapes After Guy necklaces from Sight Unseen's online jewelry shop.

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Bloc necklaces in leather, wood, and metal tubing, designed by the Seattle-based Ladies & Gentlemen Studio.

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Copper-plated sage burners by Iacoli & McAllister.

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Most of the vintage pieces sprinkled throughout the shop were selected by Sight Unseen favorite Jason Rosenberg, but these 1980s Beach Party mugs by Mikasa were snagged by Monica off Etsy. They're framed by wood and horsehair brushes from Fredericks and Mae.

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Geo stools by the up-and-coming Brooklyn designer Patrick Kim in wood, cork, and felt.

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Noah Spencer of the Brooklyn-based arts collaborative Fort Makers designed these geometric wood candlesticks, which fill the windows at Creatures of Comfort.

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Mugs by Peter Shire, raw cypress cutting boards by Jonah Takagi, brass bottle openers by Bec Brittain and stone trivets by Fort Standard.

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Special shape kites by Fredericks and Mae hang jauntily above Scrap Lamps by Jonah Takagi, vintage books selected by Sight Unseen, sage burners and a vintage game and spice rack from Jason Rosenberg's collection.

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On the wall: shields by Persico + Dublin, pillows by Caitlin Mociun, bookends by Shin Okuda.

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Hanging shape sculptures by Shabd, who was an artist dabbling in ceramics before she started her fashion line a few years back. Each sculpture is the result of a month of making.

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From left: Dot paintings by the Texas-based artist Sam Schonzeit, wood-block prints by London stylist Despina Curtis, and Patrick Kim's mirrors made from wood, black climbing rope, and copper tubing.

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We saw this three-piece stationery set by Aussie up-and-comers Daniel Emma at the London Design Festival nearly three years ago and have been obsessed ever since. Behind it are three newer obsessions: weavings by New Friends, stone candleholders by Fort Standard, and a copper necklace by Simone Brewster from the Sight Unseen jewelry shop.

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Our Shapeless corner included a mixed media work by the Helmut Lang textile-print designer Pascale Gueracague, more ceramic work by Shabd, incense holders by Renata Abbade, and expanded foam Swell vases by the Brooklyn-based Chen Chen.

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The opening party on Tuesday night also feted the launch of our first printed edition, Paper View, which features stories on many of the designers we've included in our shop. Designed by Studio Lin, the book is a limited-edition, 88-page softcover, beautifully printed and bound by Shapco on Mohawk Paper — and it's selling like hotcakes! Buy yours here.

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Paper View is the first entry in the Unfiltered project by Karlsson's Gold Vodka, championing creative initiatives that celebrate craft, heritage, and process.

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Partygoers perusing the merch.

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The Shape Shop is open at Creatures of Comfort at 205 Mulberry Street in New York until May 6. Be there, or be square! (And if you can't be there, don't worry — in May we'll be hosting a monthlong extension to the pop-up with selected items available in Sight Unseen's online shop!)