Cool Spaces: Now You See Me

WORDS Lindi Brownell Meiring IMAGES Graeme Wyllie


A collaboration between creative duo Jana + Koos and award-winning interior designer Tristan du Plessis of studioA has resulted in a beautiful new retail space in Norwood, Joburg.

Now You See Me is a high-end independent optometrist and eyewear store headed up by specialists Neels and Ilse Prinsloo, who wanted to create a store where eyewear is treated like art.

Jana+Koos took control of the creative direction, brand identity and concept design, while Tristan took the shop from a strong concept to a reality.

“Whenever studioA gets together with Jana+Koos the projects are fun, brave and authentic,” says Tristan. “The brief was to create an out-of-the-ordinary optometry and retail experience, created with unique elemental design,” says Tristan, who made use of a combination of both locally designed furniture and lighting, including Dokter and Misses, as well as international design brands like Lee Broom and Seletti. “This was definitely not a copy and paste design project.”

The shop, which originally existed as an optometrist for over 35 years, boasts a carefully considered layout, sophisticated design pieces and a beautiful colour palette, all of which fits effortlessly with the space’s more whimsical elements, including a full mirrored ceiling and illustrative wallpaper created by Jana+Koos, which features subjects from classical paintings sporting trendy eyewear.

“A beige colour palette is not what usually comes to mind when envisioning a contemporary retail space, however we felt this colour was well suited to an unusual brand,” says Tristan. “We balanced it out with concrete textures, as well as mirror and deep red marble.”

The interiors aren’t the only thing that stands out about this store, which features a raw concrete facade. Two large round windows, reminiscent of eyes, invite you in to the store from the outside.

Love this space? See more of studioA’s projects, here.