Concept stores Part 2: Medellín, Colombia
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Latin America’s surge of fashion designers has left numerous up-and-coming talents without their own shop to sell their wares, leading the most resourceful to join forces at multi-brand stores and collectives. In our series on concept stores, kriteria talks to some of the standout representatives of this Latin American movement.
In part 1, we took you to the Colombian capital of Bogotá, where three distinct concept stores stand out from the masses. Part 2 continues in Medellin, Colombia, the city of the eternal spring and a place known for its fashion week and a remarkable textile industry, as well as the home of three very different concept stores: Makeno, Ocho43, and Duna. Read on for details or click here if you missed part 1 in Bogotá.
Known as the city’s most established design store, and with the greatest selection of brands to offer, Makeno is unlike most concept stores. Its standout feature? An excellent curatorship that unearths the city’s future talents, and a true lifestyle concept where shoppers can find anything from casual wear, menswear and accessories to books, music and décor.
Makeno opened its doors seven years ago when sisters-in-law and founding partners Paola Betancur and Manuela Rubio realized the city lacked a place for shoppers like them— a growing niche of design-focused consumers interested in a more discerning consumption— to find the brands they loved.
The next thing they knew, they had created a business that supports Colombian design, selling items at the same price as the designer, and offering a top-notch curation of carefully selected products. Today, the store boasts products by 90 local entrepreneurs—most from Medellin but many from Barranquilla, Monteria, Bogotá, Cali, Bucaramanga, never ignoring its local roots.
Highlights: Makeno’s accessories wall displays enviable products from some of Colombia’s finest designers – like purses by Michú and mules by Laura Cepeda, Renata Lozano, or Mercedes Campuzano. Don’t forget to rummage through the back for one-of-a-kind décor pieces.
Located nearby Medellin’s iconic Parque del Poblado, Ocho43 features 70 brands of local talent, and everything a woman could possibly need to complete her closet. From underwear, jewelry and eye-catching casualwear such as Champleve and Ana Arias Atelier, to hats, ruffled tops, beachwear and footwear, the store’s identity speaks to a highly feminine woman with a graceful spirit and a love of sunshine.
Highlights: Ruffled tops by Eugenia Fernandez and printed bikinis by Malai make up the spot’s fashionista agenda. When you’re done, be sure to go next door to Rumah-Soul Up to sip on a cold drink and soak up some Medellin sunshine in the shared patio area.
A newcomer to the Medellin concept store scene, Duna is the place to go when you need a top-notch outfit quick, but also want it designed by the best in Colombian design. Just a few steps from Makeno (number one on our list) in the renowned Lleras area, the two-story shop offers a vast selection of garments and accessories for men and women by about 50 designers from around the country.
Duna’s selection is constantly in rotation, replacing old collections with fresh designs every 20 days or so, and keeping its loyal clientele delightfully surprised and on its toes.
Highlights: Don’t leave without seeing a Carlo Carrizosa dress up close, and make sure you try on one of the inimitable Ducky Black leather jackets. Plus, the bodies by Cartagena-born designer Maygel Coronel are to die for.