Macy’s in big ‘Story’ move

Macy’s is making good on its commitment to innovate its store experience.

Approximately one year after the department store giant acquired Story, the experiential Manhattan retailer that reinvents itself with a new theme every couple of months, Macy’s has added Story concept shops to 36 stores, including its Herald Square flagship. Similar to the original Story outpost, the shops will change their merchandise theme, inventory and décor every few months and feature a blend of collaborations, narrative-driven merchandising and event programming.

The Story shops average 1,500 sq. ft. each. Herald Square is serving as the concept’s flagship location, and will encompass more than 7,500 sq. ft. of continuous retail space on the main floor and mezzanine levels. (A list of all the Story at Macy’s locations is at the end of the article.)

“The Story at Macy’s experience feels a lot like a real-life version of scrolling through Instagram,” said Rachel Shechtman, founder of Story and Macy’s brand experience officer. “You discover things you weren’t looking for, but are inspired by all the fun finds – the second you see it, you need it! We aspire to create that feeling with the breadth of the narrative-driven merchandise edit we are bringing to life with the launch of Story at Macy’s across the country.”

The first iteration of Story at Macy’s is called Color, and will be live from April 10 to June 26. It features about 400 items, many from small companies, for men, women, kids and the home. The lineup ranges from the national in-store debut of online kidswear brand Primary to gourmet chocolate bars in unique flavors from LA-based chocolatiers Compartes.

Three big names —MAC Cosmetics, Crayola and Levi’s Kids — are integral to the shop, contributing special events as well as merchandise.

MAC Cosmetics is offering an experience that, up until now, has only been available at its professional stores. The experience features the beauty brand’s custom-build service, a “Make Your Own” palette station. Customers will also have the opportunity to take beauty classes on-site from expert makeup artists.

Crayola is offering hands-on workshops featuring its Create it Yourself (C.I.Y.) Network of creative and clever crafting videos which are designed to inspire inventive uses for Crayola products.

Levi’s Kids, manufactured and distributed by Haddad Brands, will preview a selection of pieces from its exclusive Levi’s x Crayola collaboration debuting at Macy’s for back-to-school. A few select pieces from the collaboration will be available before the full line officially launches mid-June at select Macy’s stores.

Macy’s said it trained more than 270 people to staff its Story shops, immersing them in a new experiential retail training program that provides staff with integrated roles on everything from building fixtures to customer engagement and event production.

New York City designer David Stark designed the Color shop, which is merchandised by color. Longtime Story partner FLOR helped to accent the space with a custom pixelated patterned carpet, creating an organizing principle to help navigate guests across a spectrum of color and cross-category merchandise. Italian fixture company ALU provided customized fixturing which can be easily changed to accommodate Story’s ever-changing theme.

“The discovery-led, narrative experience of Story gives new customers a fresh reason to visit our stores and gives the current Macy’s customer even more reason to come back again and again throughout the year,” said Jeff Gennette, chairman and CEO, Macy’s.

Story at Macy’s is featured at the following stores:

• Macy’s South Coast Plaza – Costa Mesa, CA
• Macy’s Newport Fashion Island – Newport Beach, CA
• Macy’s Stoneridge – Pleasanton, CA
• Macy’s Union Square – San Francisco, CA
• Macy’s Westfield Valley Fair – Santa Clara, CA
• Macy’s Boca Raton Town Center – Boca Raton, FL
• Macy’s Dadeland – Miami, FL
• Macy’s Orlando Millenia – Orlando, FL
• Macy’s Lenox Square- Atlanta, GA
• Macy’s Perimeter – Atlanta, GA
• Macy’s State Street – Chicago, IL
• Macy’s Woodfield – Schaumburg, IL
• Macy’s Castleton Square – Indianapolis, IN
• Macy’s Fayette – Lexington, KY
• Macy’s Ridgedale – Minnetonka, MN
• Macy’s Las Vegas Fashion Show – Las Vegas, NV
• Macy’s Bridgewater – Bridgewater Township, NJ
• Macy’s Freehold – Freehold Township, NJ
• Macy’s Short Hills – Short Hills, NJ
• Macy’s Willowbrook – Wayne, NJ
• Macy’s Brooklyn – Brooklyn, NY
• Macy’s Roosevelt Field – Long Island, NY
• Macy’s Herald Square – New York, NY
• Macy’s Queens Center – Queens, NY
• Macy’s Cross County – Yonkers, NY
• Macy’s Kenwood Towne Centre – Cincinnati, OH
• Macy’s Easton – Columbus, OH
• Macy’s Polaris – Columbus, OH
• Macy’s Center City – Philadelphia, PA
• Macy’s Ross Park – Pittsburgh, PA
• Macy’s Northpark Center – Dallas, TX
• Macy’s Houston Galleria – Houston, TX
• Macy’s Memorial City – Houston, TX
• Macy’s Bellevue – Bellevue, WA
• Macy’s Alderwood – Lynnwood, WA
• Macy’s Metro Center – Washington, D.C.
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