A Different Kind of Traffic, Surprise and a Smile

Like some strange magical power, Pop Ups can transform any part of city into a hotspot, practically overnight. Imagine you are taking a walk in your neighborhood and you discover a pop up store. What does this tell you? Okay, it can tell you that you need to break your piggybank and come back to get those jeans, but we mean something bigger and more fundamental here. What it tells you is, that your neighborhood is thriving. While you stand there and press your nose against the shop window, your part of town is becoming more colorful, more fluid, more lively, attracting entrepreneurs and creatives. Like some strange magical power, pop ups can transform any part of city into a hotspot, practically overnight. One of the reasons being, that they usually come in bunches. Once a couple pop up shops “break in” to a new area, the crowd is not too far away. And the crowd wants food, beverages, a place to sleep and entertainement to accompany their shopping. For instance, who would have thought five years ago, that the Torstraße in Berlin would develop into a pop up hub as well as the cultural and gastronomical mile of the east?

Pop Up Love is spreading across Europe
But Berlin and its Torstraße are not unique it that sense, even though many of us Berliners love to think so on a daily basis. A great example of this development, can be spotted at Rotterdam’s Delftse Poort, where two hip Rotterdam companies have just settled down, instantly bringing a buzz to a previously rather business-like 60.000 sqm building complex. NAN Suits, one of two new tenants, offers a hand-picked selection of women’s business attire, mixed up with some design-your-own, tailored pieces from its home label NAN. With this stylish and feminine brand moving into the building, we cannot but expect at least fifty percent of female CEOs to wander the buildings shiny halls, right?


Granny’s Finest Shop is a community center where older people come together to knit
The second concept for the building is just as unique. Have you ever heard of a company hiring mostly over 65 year-olds, letting them knit chic designer scarves and then make customers send a postcard to the elderly on purchase? Incredible yet true – Granny’s Finest were looking for a place to set up their web shop and photo studio for a period of two years, promoting their high-quality handcrafted goods, while combating social problems like elder loneliness.

Granny's Finest_Designer Renske Versluijs with the grannies from Utrecht_Photography by Lysanne Wilkens

A nice concept to make everyone smile again
Pop up queen Caroline de Jager (Go—PopUp) matched the two Rotterdam based firms to the new Delftse Poort building, adding real value to the location. Caroline explains: “We wanted concepts which would bring a different kind of traffic, surprise and a smile!” The Delfste Poort inhabitants are very pleased with the new temporary concepts. As a special treat for the opening week, de Jager arranged a pop up Barbershop. The guys of Mudly’s Barbershop happened to be looking for new customers and were happy to test out the surrounding by opening shop in an unusual location. Not a bad idea to offer hair cuts during office lunch breaks for the busy yet stylish, granny loving employee. “This was immediate fun! People, normally going to their offices, could jump into the Barber Mobile and get a nice haircut. There was some old-skool music and everything in the building was completely turned around into a happy working space! So if you want to cheer up your boring office, let us find you some nice concept to make everyone smile again!” Caroline de Jager.


Photography “Pictures of the Grannies” by Milan Boonstra

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