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The Herbarium for Crabtree & Evelyn | RIBA Windows, London

  • interactive display at Regent Street using light by Michael Grubb Studio, RIBA Windows 2015
  • lighting scheme at Regent Street fro Crabtree and Evelyn store by Michael Grubb Studio, London
  • installation lighting design by Michael Grubb Studio


The RIBA Regent Street Windows Project connects noted RIBA architects with flagship retailers to create captivating architectural installations within their shop windows. Moreover, the annual project creates a huge public architecture exhibition seen by more than one million people each week. The Herbarium for Crabtree and Evelyn ran for three weeks and coincided with the London Design Festival and London Fashion Week.

For this interactive lighting display, our collaboration with London Atelier was driven by the motto of John Evelyn: “‘Omnia explorate, meliora retinete,” — explore everything, keep the best. This became the great source of influence for our interactive lighting design scheme.

As a result, the design captures a memory of the tradition of English Still rooms. Moreover, a delicate combination of plants and flowers, tracing paper, copper and brass utensils, wooden surfaces, remedies and potions form a captivating design story. In the end, the display is a choreographed ensemble of herbs, plants and flowers preserved in panes of soap within a brass grid lit by an LED matrix.


  • Interactive lighting design by MGS
  • LED Interactive lighting by Michael Grubb Studio


Overall, the scheme used  77 linear runs of LED lights to create a subtle, organically animated and surprising lighting effect. The lighting matrix responded to the movements of passers-by and translated them into disturbances, and ripples into general pattern. Finally, the engagement element was a crucial part of this interactive lighting design project. The patterns formed by passers’ created “imprint” interaction with the display and seemingly connoting one’s mere touch with nature.

Described as an “engaging and delightful installation,” the project received a Special Commendation.


The Crabtree & Evelyn project was a collaboration in the true sense of the word. We knew there would be an element of lighting but didn’t know what it would be and how it might work, until we started working with Michael Grubb Studio.”

 Pouya Zamanpour, Director of London Atelier



This project is featured in the articles below

Dezeen | Design InsiderArchDaily | Vogue | Architects’ Journal




Crabtree & Evelyn

Design Team

London Atelier, Michael Grubb Studio, Tina Tsang


James Newton


Regent Street, London, UK


Surface Design Awards 2017 — Finalist