Retailworks Selected for Design Work to Elevate Shopping Experiences at Allen Edmonds, Laacke & Joys

Dec. 4, 2012

Two iconic Wisconsin businesses that are planning retail changes and upgrades have retained Retailworks, Inc., of Mequon, to provide design services that will elevate the shopping experience and give shoppers a strong sense of the rich history of each company.

The businesses, Allen Edmonds Corporation, and Laacke & Joys, LLC, are expanding and changing their business plans, and addressing branding, design and display issues.

“We’re honored to partner with these two great businesses as they work to enhance the retail setting for their customers,” said Lyn Falk, founder and president of Retailworks, Inc.

New Displays, Graphics and Signage Will Manifest Allen Edmonds’ Rich History

Allen Edmonds, based in Port Washington, Wis., plans to add new retail stores and renovate existing stores over the next several years. The company currently owns 41 retail stores nationwide.

Falk and Retailworks are consulting with Allen Edmonds to elevate the store experience, capitalizing on the company’s craftsmanship and rich, authentic history as an American shoe manufacturer.

“Allen Edmonds has been very successful in solidifying its brand as something special,” Falk said. “We aim to fully incorporate that brand experience in the store design; shoppers will know they’re in a unique place with an atmosphere that exudes the quality, distinctiveness and history of Allen Edmonds.”

The company’s first store in Philadelphia, its fourth in Manhattan and an existing store in Minneapolis will be the first to present the new “branded” ideas in early 2013.

Redesign Will Elevate the Laacke & Joys Retail Presentation

Meanwhile, Milwaukee-based Laacke & Joys will consolidate its three retail operations into its Brookfield location over the course of the next year and a half. The changes are partly prompted by the company’s acquisition of a specialty seating company and the subsequent need for more manufacturing space.

The Mequon store will close in 2013 and the Milwaukee store the following year, allowing the company to focus on its Brookfield retail operation. The Brookfield store will be renovated based on a Retailworks design that highlights Laacke & Joys’ history dating from its founding in 1844 as a ship chandlery through its outdoor gear of today.

“We are thrilled to be working with Lyn Falk and her very talented team on the new and exciting look they have created for our Brookfield store,” said Marsha Mather, president of Laacke & Joys. “Our plans are to implement all of their design recommendations over the next 12 to 18 months, which will give us a very fresh, fun and updated look.”

The Laacke & Joys renovation will involve flooring, lighting, transaction counters, displays, signage, dressing rooms and interactive kiosks. Holley Bakich, a Retailworks’ designer, envisions a demonstration section of the store where outdoor gear, such as tents and camping gear, could be set up for customers to try out.

“Customers want to know how something is going to function, or how it gets assembled and disassembled, before they try it out in the elements,” said Bakich. “So whether it’s actually setting up a tent, or learning about a kayak via one of the interactive kiosks, customers will have a better experience out in the real world.”

“Laacke & Joys is the oldest manufacturer and retailer in Milwaukee,” Falk noted. “There is a tremendous amount of history tied into its brand, along with its reputation for quality. The new store design will give shoppers a strong sense of that unique history and quality.”

Along with its retail division that focuses on specialty outdoor gear and outdoor living furniture, Laacke & Joys’ manufacturing division handles medical products, specialty seating, and custom cut and sewn products.

Falk's designs and recommendations have helped thousands of business owners create more profitable business environments. The Retailworks team designs interiors, facades, store fixtures and reception counters, and provides merchandising and display services, all to optimize retail experiences that improve sales and profits.
Her clientele represents more than 35 different retail industries, as well as numerous non-traditional retailers such as restaurants, banks and credit unions, manufacturer showrooms, trade exhibits, and downtown communities.
Retailworks, founded in 1995, is online at www.retailworksinc.com.

About Allen Edmonds Corporation
Founded in 1922, Allen Edmonds Corporation is a privately-held US-based manufacturer of premium men’s footwear and accessories. Taking shoemaking to the level of an art form, Allen Edmonds footwear is handcrafted in Port Washington, Wis., using a 212-step production process. Allen Edmonds products are available at upscale stores worldwide, including 41 Allen Edmonds stores across the U.S., and online at www.allenedmonds.com.

About Laacke & Joys
Laacke & Joys was founded in 1844 and began as a commercial lake shipping retailer, as well as a cut and sew sail maker. It has continued the same two major business entities through today. The company has altered its focus over the years from manufacturing sails, awnings and tents to focusing on medical products, Concept Seating 24/7 Intensive Use Chairs and other proprietary custom cut and sewn products. The company serves as a specialty outdoor retailer, as well as selling casual furniture for outdoor living areas. Laacke and Joys’ retail store can be found at ljoutdoors.com.

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