Throwback Thursday – Ivy League Projects

In honor of Throwback Thursday, we have decided to reach into our archives to showcase one of our favorite Ivy League school projects. This exhibition of the Evolution of Design was created by the Harvard Graduate School of Design in 2011 with the help of Rakks custom counter brackets and stands.

Harvard Graduate School of Design

To celebrate 75 years of design, the Harvard Graduate School of Design created an incredible exhibition consisting of 120 display boxes, chronicling the school’s progress beginning in 1936 and included the progress of the design world at large. “Organized into six thematic categories: Design as Research, Design as Critique, City as Process, City as Form, The Continuous Institution, and The Shifting Institution, each section contained dispatches that spoke to a greater set of themes spanning all of the School’s programs and departments, various media, and all seventy-five of the School’s years. In momentarily stopping the clock, this exhibition enlivened the GSD, and Harvard University at large, with the engagement and propulsion that the past can offer us today and tomorrow” (Peter Christensen (PhD ’14), Curatorial Director).

Harvard Graduate School of Design

Harvard Graduate School of Design worked with Dan Borelli and Douglas Jack of the Exhibit Team under a tight deadline, Rakks was able to supply custom counter brackets and stands to support the exhibit’s display boxes and tables. Cut and welded at custom angles, the Rakks brackets allowed the display boxes to be installed at a variety of angles for both visual impact and easy viewing of the articles and information presented.

At Rakks, we love to see our products used in creative and innovative ways, and the Harvard Graduate School of Design continually strives to embrace creativity and innovation. On September 12th and 13th the GSD is gathering luminaries of the industry for “Grounded Visionaries” – a symposium of innovation. This gathering promises to underscore the GSD’s reputation as the most widely ambitious, experimental and optimistic design schools in the world.

September 4th, 2014 | Comments Off

Young International Architect Talks about Rakks

Interview with Aashman Goghari, Rhode Island School of Design

What is your education background and what was it that drew you to architecture?

Architecture allows for artistic expression within the confines of scientific rationality and this is what initially drew me to the profession and Rhode Island School of Design (RISD). I came from a science heavy background with an informal interest in design. In the end, it was either industrial design or architecture for me, since they both seemed like a logical combination of the science and art. I finally picked architecture since it is hailed as somewhat of a ‘mother art’ – it teaches holistic sensibilities that apply to all forms of design at multiple scales.

Please share a little bit about the architecture course at Rhode Island School of Design and your experience with it.

RISD’s architecture program is quite something. Each professor has a nuanced and unique understanding of the profession, thus providing a wealth of possible interpretations of the role of architecture in our lives, and specifically in the 21st century. Sometimes I wish there was less of a disparity between architectural education and the practice of architecture, but that’s what internships are for and this summer I had the opportunity to intern with Studio Luz architects, which was an incredible real life experience.

In your opinion, would Rakks work on a global scale?
Why or why not.

Yes. The Rakks modular shelving system exhibits timeless design that works globally. The system speaks a language of contemporary sophistication that has architectural appeal and limitless options regardless of geographic or cultural boundaries.

August 14th, 2014 | Comments Off

Rakks Shelving Gets Interactive.

Rakks shelving systems are well known within the design and architectural community and we strive to make our product information easily accessible to our customers. To achieve that goal we developed our interactive product identification tool. Now with a click of your mouse, you can access product specifications including model numbers and measurements by clicking on strategically placed icons on installation photos in our online portfolio. If you like what you see, you can get complete product information and also purchase the product in the Rakks Store.

In an effort to continually support the process of design visualization through implementation, the Rakks website was redesigned to offer architects and designers the opportunity to see the portfolio image first and then look at the specs without leaving the page. This process is not only interactive, but it is a friendly and less time-consuming approach to search for solutions.

We invite you to watch this video to see the Rakks product identification tool in action. We think you will like what you see.

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August 4th, 2014 | Comments Off

A Sweet Installation of Rakks in New York City

For 14 years now, New York City has been treated to some of the finest authentic handmade chocolates, made by renowned chocolatier Jacques Torres. Fondly known as ‘Mr. Chocolate’, Jacques has an impressive resume. He was the recipient of the Meilleur Ouvrier de France (Best Craftsman of France) medal in pastry and a senior level pastry chef at the Ritz Carlton and Le Cirque. However, his dreams lay elsewhere as he moved on to set up his own chocolate factories and retail boutiques across New York City.

Rakks is very proud to have the opportunity to play a supporting role in turning Jacques American Dream into a reality. Interior designer, Dimitrios Klonis of Urban Green Furniture has used and recommended Rakks products in four of Jacques’ boutiques in the city. Much to Jacques liking, he says that they do a beautiful job, and work in accordance with his expectations.

The boutique on the Upper East Side on 57th Street uses Rakks shelving to its fullest aesthetic potential. Though a confined space, it has been cleverly made to look a lot larger using wall mirrors. Reflected through them are Jacques Torres’ wide range of chocolate delicacies, arranged neatly on glass surfaces attached to the walls using Rakks’ wall mounted type C standard product (installed between mirror) with regular duty Rakks style shelf support brackets. Stick-on shelf rests were used to keep the glass shelves from sliding on the brackets. This use of the mirrors with the Rakks products is unique and effective as it subtly puts visual emphasis on the products, within the store.

Sylvain Cottard applauds Rakks saying, “We are happy to use Rakks shelving systems because they allow multiple design options. The system is slick, elegant and works perfectly with the glass shelves, allowing us to put a lot of chocolate on the shelves. I also like the flexibility of the system that lets us adjust the height of the shelves, which is especially great for us during the holidays. Our specials such as Big Santa for Christmas, Giant Bunnies for Easter and Bonbon boxes for Valentine’s Day have more visibility.”

Jacques Torres’ unique combination of his knowledge of chocolate and of French techniques, along with his passion for culinary arts is evident in every bite of the delicious and distinct chocolates. He and his staff strictly use all natural ingredients of the highest quality without any shortcuts, preservatives, extracts or essences. Their products range from champagne truffles, caramel popcorn to chocolate covered espresso beans. However the most popular products that lure ages 7 through 77 into the boutiques are the award winning hot chocolate and the decadently rich chocolate chip cookies. This summer, Jacques Torres offers summer ice cream cookies in vanilla, chocolate, strawberry and salted caramel flavors. It’s a great way to beat the heat this season.


Don’t miss Rakks at Jacques Torres: 

 Upper East Side: 110 East 57th Street, between Park and Lexington

NoHo: 327 Lafayette Street, between Bleecker and Houston
Other Locations: 

DUMBO: 66 Water Street

SoHo: 350 Hudson Street, corner of King Street

Rockefeller Center: 30 Rockefeller Plaza, Concourse Level

July 14th, 2014 | Comments Off

Rakks at Rough Trade NYC

Photograph by Becky

A treat for traditional music lovers, UK based vinyl record store Rough Trade  has recently opened its first American store in Brooklyn, NY, Rough Trade NYC.  In a bid to “create something different for the people of New York,” Co-President Stephen Godfroy and his iconic company have turned to Rakks as they repurposed a 15,000 sq ft film prop warehouse into New York’s largest record store.

The launch of a traditional record store in New York during an age of digitization may seem like a massive financial challenge to many. However, Godfroy displays great faith in the global culture of New York and believes that like Londoners, New Yorkers also have a deep respect for the past, with a balanced appetite for the future. His model for success relies heavily on creating an atmosphere tailored for conventional music lovers to hang out in and eventually buy products

Photograph by Becky

Rakks was once again instrumental in playing the supporting role in the effort to create an industrial chic design for this ‘destination store experience.’ The store is three times larger than any of its UK stores, with an installation gallery, 300 person sound-proof performance space with a bar and coffee counter. According to, the interior walls are lined with metal from 16 old shipping containers and murals of fashionable album covers are seen hand painted on overexposed brick. The old school rustic charm is maintained even with the display of the records,  some even directly placed on Rakks’s shelving!

“Quite simply, Rakks provided us with a definitive shelving solution, ideal for our book and magazine retail requirements. Not only is the product first-class, the design service and customer care provides significant added value, helping us quickly and reliably with all our specific requests and requirements. Overall, we can’t recommend Rakks highly enough.” – Stephen Godfroy, Co-President, Rough Trade Retail

Photograph by Becky

Rough Trade offers record fans a sense of community and localness with a retail experience that has been lost to today’s music industry. The wide product selection, knowledgeable staff and unique retail experience make Rough Trade a must visit, especially if you love your music!

Rough Trade, 64, North 9th Street, near the East River, Williamsburg, Brooklyn NY
Store Times: 9am-11pm


June 4th, 2014 | Comments Off

Talk About Karma

Marcela Hughes is a Yoga Instructor, Certified Health Coach and owner of Marcela’s Yoga Boutique Old Town, Alexandria, Virginia. The shop is delightfully warm and inviting.

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