The Japanese retailer, known for its minimalist aesthetic and commitment to reducing waste, welcomed shoppers to its 3,200-square-foot SoHo location. This is its first outpost in the U.S.The Wikipedia entry mentions that "The protagonist of William Gibson's 2003 novel Pattern Recognition, being allergic to brands and corporate logos, wears clothing from MUJI."
You can find just about anything you need, except for logos. Muji is short for Mujirushi Ryohin, which roughly translates to "no label, quality goods.” The low-key store design reflects that aesthetic with wood floors and basic aluminum fixtures, and the company has always been driven by a principle of reducing waste through limiting production materials and packaging. A pair of bumblebee-striped slippers, for example, comes with a single tag, and starting in 2008, buyers who utilize the cloth “My Bag” on designated nights will get a 15% discount.
Ironically, at a time when corporations are falling over backward to label themselves as Earth-conscious, Azami plays down the 25-plus years of ecological thinking. “We eliminate waste because from the customer’s point-of-view they don’t want heavy packaging,” he says, “but it was not a conscious, intentional focus on environmental issues.”
455 Broadway (Between Grand and Howard Streets)
New York, NY 10013
N, Q, R, W: Canal St.
Monday thru Saturday 11 a.m. - 9 p.m.
Sunday 11 a.m. - 8 p.m.
Muji is where I got my RFID-blocking aluminum card case.
They're open today (Thanksgiving) until 9PM, but I think we'll stop by Sunday or something.