Ortloff: Shopping experience with a concept

Ortloff: Shopping experience with a concept

On 5 July 2017, the traditional Cologne-based company Ortloff opened after a complete refit with a new innovative conception. The specialist stationery retailer counted on specialists from The Store Designers and Hoffmann Ladenbau for the planning and implementation.

Here, all registers of modern design possibilities were drawn and the tradition and values of the company founded in 1923 were interwoven. Elements such as concept store and pop-up areas are deliberately used for targeting the target group and as an experience. The specialist dealer, which has been under the management of Soennecken eG since 2015, will provide new impetus not only for buyers but also for Soennecken members.

“Come in without knocking, the door to my house stands open”, Erich Ortloff


The slogan of the company founder is reflected today in every area of the completely redesigned ground floor of around 550 m². The current design options and trends such as concrete visuals and walnut décor have been interwoven with the traditional values of the company founded in 1923, and create a contemporary look. The specialist retailer, which has been managed by Soennecken eG since 2015, restructured its shop image, previously dominated by goods, into a clear, reduced store design, and is setting new standards throughout the industry.

Inspiration, ideas and impulse buys


Elements such as the concept store and pop-up areas have been used purposely to direct the range and as sources of inspiration. The concept store on the left-hand side of the entrance area takes up the significant Bauhaus and Art Deco style and presents decorative exhibition pieces on the topic of attractive works in a ceiling-high decorative drawer system.

The structure of the wall presented a particular challenge when building the wall of drawers. Hoffmann Ladenbau project manager Rüdiger Fleige reports, “historically, Cologne has done some things like this in its time. It also left behind marks in the fabric of the building so that we had to even out the walls first with dry build elements. This ensured a solid anchoring for building the drawers.” Besides the dry build, as the general contractor Hoffmann Ladenbau also carried out the flooring and painting work, and created the unusual presentation of the furnishings and consultation counter, such as the representative pharmacist cabinet and the glazed table showcases in the writing consultation area.

Creative solutions

Further eye-catchers in the entrance area are the intricate paper items, such as the origami work in the shape of Cologne Cathedral and a ceiling canvas made of paper. To install the latter professionally, Hoffmann Ladenbau made a ceiling grid from black powdered steel in its own metal workshop.

Creativity was also called for in designing the shop window. Rüdiger Fleige explains, “As access to the shop window is very narrow, instead of a real wood slab we had the décor printed there and then on wallpaper and affixed it directly to the shop window backdrop.”