Closing shop at Ward Warehouse leads designers to ‘dream home’

Many consider the upcoming demolition of Ward Warehouse as the end of an era.

But for one business, it led to a new beginning.

For a year, designers Allison Izu Song and Summer Shiigi considered the shopping complex their second home.

The Collective served as a combined retail store and workshop for their respective lines, Allison Izu and Ten Tomorrow, and represented a new venture for their brands.

“Being there was supposed to be just a test at the retail concept, and the support we received blew away our expectations,” said Shiigi. “We will always be grateful for our stay there.”

When their short-term lease expired, the designers were fortunate to find a two-story space in Kaimuki.

Song and Shiigi used their experience at Ward Warehouse to create a unique Design House. Each room on the first floor aims to make customers feel comfortable and “at home” as they shop, while the second floor features their design and manufacturing operations.

“We took our time to brand our space the way we really wanted to,” Shiigi said. “We put a lot of hard work — many, many DIY hours — to make it beautiful, bright, and welcoming. The process is literally like moving into your dream home. You have to decide on furniture, paint, and so many other details.”

To add to the welcoming feel, the duo made sure to include comfortable seating for husbands, boyfriends, and keiki.

This Saturday, July 22, the designers are eager to share their home with the public with a grand opening party from 2-6 p.m.

The celebration will resemble a neighborhood market with pop-ups by other Kaimuki businesses, such as Salvage Public, The Public Pet, and A. Wattz Designs. There will also be food by 12th Ave Grill, Kan Zaman, Pipeline Bakery, and more.

In the future, Song and Shiigi hope to host more events, including private shopping parties, afternoon teas, and lunch.

“We are excited to lay down some roots, get cozy, and hopefully grow to a new level,” Shiigi said.

Design House featuring Allison Izu and Ten Tomorrow is located at 1114 11th Avenue. It is open Mondays through Saturdays, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., and Sundays by appointment only.

For more information, visit AllisonIzu.com and TenTomorrow.com.

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