In a new type of retail disruption, London’s must buzzed-about department store, Selfridges, plans to remove the men’s and women’s departments on the three floors of its Oxford Street flagship from mid- March to the end of April, replacing them with unisex or gender-neutral shops.
As part of what it calls the “Agender Project,” the 114-year-old high-end retailer will apply a similar strategy to the beauty producers and accessories on the three floors as well. The mannequins will be temporarily taken off the floors, with film, photography and music used to highlight the collections. Selfridges’ stores in Manchester and Birmingham stores, as well as its online site, will also feature gender-neutral spaces as well.
Selfridges, often cited as the most innovative department store in the world, has launched five unisex collections and ‘agender’ pieces from forty of its regular brands.
In a statement to The Times, Selfridges said: “We want to take our customers on a journey where they can shop and dress without limitations or stereotypes. A space where clothing is no longer imbued with directive gender values, enabling fashion to exist as a purer expression of ‘self’.”