Lauren Bush Lauren is continuing her mission to feed children in need by providing school lunches around the world (especially in countries like Cambodia, Chad and Guatemala) with her FEED Projects organization. What started in 2007 with a feed bag, modeled on a food rations bag, has turned into a full-fledged lifestyle brand opening its first retail space, The FEED Shop & Cafe, on May 3rd in the Empire Stores development in Dumbo, Brooklyn (West Elm and Shinola are also in the new complex). Working with partners, FEED has provided more than 95 million meals and counting—making huge strides in the fight against childhood hunger.
Located right over the Brooklyn Bridge on the East River waterfront, the store features a copper coffee bar—La Colombe coffee and City Bakery pastries are served—original wood beams, wall-to-wall retractable windows, an exposed brick wall featuring a world map in faded white with the brand’s logo overlaid in black.
There’s also a meal counter ticker modeled off an old train station sign, which records the number of school meals donated as a result of purchases made. With the purchase of every single item, food included, meals will be directly donated to children in need. “We realize that most people don’t buy a new bag every day, but they may buy a coffee or a muffin,” says Bush Lauren.
The space will offer an assortment of products priced from $10-$300, alongside “FEED Finds,” a selection of socially conscious items—from artisanal alpaca teddy bears, to hand-poured soy wax candles and locally made goods—and a special Brooklyn tote which provides 10 meals with each purchase to local schools.
“We’ve expanded our product offerings quite a bit, starting with just one bag design and expanding into a number of other categories,” says Bush Lauren. Michael Gilmore of WeddleGilmore, who worked with Bush Lauren on her and husband David Lauren’s West Village home, was tapped as the architect/designer of this space.
“We wanted the space to feel consistent with our products and to ensure it felt true to our aesthetic,” says Bush Lauren. “I am often inspired by the art and traditional crafts I see on my travels and we try to incorporate some of that artisan work and global inspiration into some of our designs.”
“This renovated 1880s storehouse building provides an ideal mix of color, texture and history,” says Gilmore. “The design intent was clear from day one: combine honest materials like steel and glass with reclaimed pine and oak, mix in a little copper for some sparkle, and help transform the space into a well composed backdrop for FEED to shine.”
55 Water St, Brooklyn, NY
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