The Gathering Shops featured at New Jersey's Garden State Plaza aim to give mall exposure to emerging brands, offering shoppers wares from 10-20 independent designers from apparel and beauty to home

As malls continue to reinvent their spaces and offers to survive in a transforming retail landscape, Westfield Garden State Plaza in Paramus, New Jersey is taking an innovative approach: The shopping hub is featuring emerging and direct-to-consumer brands not readily available in other locations in a popup collective called The Gathering Shops.

The shops will highlight up-and-coming designers in 10 to 20 carefully curated pods. Founder of the Gathering Shops, Sal Martorano, wanted to help these brands that did not have access to selling through mall retail: “The Gathering Shops address this problem by taking a full store and putting individual designer pods within it, allowing emerging designers to take total advantage of the foot traffic and product discovery that malls provide.”

To complement the mall presence, the Gathering Shops will also offer a significant online shop, including an app featuring designer profiles, browsing options, e-commerce, virtual dressing rooms, event information and more. Many of the brands featured are digital-first anyway, and already have an online following.

These shops also allow the Paramus mall to provide shoppers with more exclusive inventory not available at other outlets. Furthermore, the space hopes to appeal to Millennial and Gen-Z consumers with new, digitally-connected DTC offerings.

The Gathering Shops

As malls continue to reinvent their spaces and offers to survive in a transforming retail landscape, Westfield Garden State Plaza in Paramus, New Jersey is taking an innovative approach: The shopping hub is featuring emerging and direct-to-consumer brands not readily available in other locations in a popup collective called The Gathering Shops.

The shops will highlight up-and-coming designers in 10 to 20 carefully curated pods. Founder of the Gathering Shops, Sal Martorano, wanted to help these brands that did not have access to selling through mall retail: “The Gathering Shops address this problem by taking a full store and putting individual designer pods within it, allowing emerging designers to take total advantage of the foot traffic and product discovery that malls provide.”