Dezeen Magazine

Pink-tinged paint store Lick pays homage to London's art deco buildings

Dusky pink surfaces appear throughout the Lick store in southwest London, which local practice Oskar Kohnen Studio has designed as a "deliberate celebration of paint".

Lick's store is nestled among a parade of boutiques on Northcote Road and is the first brick-and-mortar outpost opened by the paint brand since its launch in 2020.

Lick paint shop in London has pink interiors
Lick has opened its first physical store in London

To honour the occasion, Oskar Kohnen Studio wanted to design the 55-square-metre store as a "deliberate celebration of paint", which he describes as "one of the most immediate and most intuitive ways to create a space".

"We live in a time where interiors are full of marble and precious finishes and I wanted to do the opposite," said the studio's titular founder.

Lick paint shop in London has pink interiors
Pink paint was applied to the store's ceiling and part of the walls

Pink-tinged paint store Lick pays homage to London's art deco buildings

Lick's facade, ceiling and a majority of its walls were therefore painted a bespoke dusky pink hue called Northcote 65 that the brand created specifically for the opening.

Lick paint shop in London has pink interiors
Walnut wood trims run around the central table

Kohnen says this largely monochromatic colour scheme is a nod to the Northcote Road of the past.

"Looking at old pictures of the high street shops from the 1950s, every one of those stores used their own simple colour combination to give identity," he explained. "It's so beautiful how colour was used back then."

Lick paint shop in London has pink interiors
The store's floor has white and grey tiling

In the store's central room, the lower half of the walls was painted off-white to create a contrast with the ceiling and in turn draw more attention to the loftiness of the space.

This room was designed to have a distinctly art deco feel with the help of a handful of clean, shapely details. At its centre is a white oval table with walnut wood trims and a curved metal pendant lamp suspended directly above.

"Northcote Road pretty much ends at the iconic Battersea Power Station, which has exactly those deco elements," said Kohnen. "I've always been a fan of London art deco, which is somehow less fancy and simple, quite often just painted simple ornaments."

Lick's paint tins are showcased on a custom shelving unit, with one side finished in pegboard panels for mounting brushes, rollers, finishing tape and other handy tools.

"I wanted to create the feeling of a workshop or atelier," added Kohnen. "I wanted to stay true to the Lick DNA, making sure the store was a place one could not only pick colours but also try them out and get creative."

In this spirit, the store's grey-and-white tiled flooring mimics that seen in the Atelier Martel – an art studio that architect Robert Mallet-Stevens completed for sculptors Jan and Joël Martel in Paris in 1927.

Lick paint shop in London has pink interiors
Products are mounted on pegboard panelling

Should customers want a more in-depth consultation with one of the Lick team, they can head to the back of the store. This area is centred on a vintage steel-legged table by Danish designer Nanna Ditzel and black editions of the curved 3300 chair by Swiss designer Bruno Rey.

Another small seating area located near the storefront features a duo of sage-green velvet armchairs.

Wooden shelving unit in Lick paint shop in London
Vintage furnishings feature throughout the interior

Another striking paint store to be featured on Dezeen is Helsinki's Cover Story, in which a number of unfinished details are meant to evoke thoughts of renovation and home improvement.

Previous colour-focused retail projects by Oskar Kohnen Studio include a mint-green eyewear store in Berlin with towering floor-to-ceiling cabinets.

The photography is by Alexander Edwards.

More images and plans

Lick paint shop in London
Floor plan