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Agency Feature Part 2: The Uncarved Block – The Galeries Victoria Food Court

The second piece of work the Uncarved Block had shortlisted in the 2012 Australian Interior Design Awards, was another food court. This time in The Galeries Victoria shopping centre. The previous food court was looking tired, located below ground level in Sydney’s CBD. Philip Chia came up with a new direction for the food court, one that would see it offer a new boutique style dining experience. Read More…

Agency Feature Part 1: The Uncarved Block – Melbourne Central Food Court

I have lost count of the amount of times I have used the above image as inspiration over the last 6 months for retail projects focusing on graphic language and tone of voice. I recently stumbled upon this article on Architecture.AU and found that the agency responsible for the project is The Uncarved Block. A relatively young agency, founded in 2010 by Philip Chia. The Uncarved Block’s holding page gives little away, other than a strong, contemporary impression that leaves the visitor intrigued to see more! Read More…

Lately….

After a few weeks break from blogging that was filled with business trips to Germany, Spain and France I am playing catch up. Here is a summary of some of the great things I have seen online over the last month. Ranging from showrooms and book stores, to hotels and offices. Not to mention a new hotel in Marseille that looks like a take on Shoreditch House by Philippe Starck. Read More…

Bonaldo Showroom, Padua Italy

This minimal furniture showroom is worth a mention. Concrete and framed floor to ceiling glass form a warehouse like space on which furniture is placed on poured polished concrete floors.

Of special interest are the clever ceiling rafts that mask off the sprayed out ceiling slab above with cut outs for suspended lighting and features. Read More…

Mackintosh flagship store, Tokyo

More Wonderwall, back in Japan this time with the opening of Mackintosh. Classic British fashion and lifestyle is the inspiration for the design of this space. The stylish interior is comprised of large scale parquet floor against white fielded panels on walls and white ceilings with chunky grid panel mouldings and covings.

Traditional furniture in the form of chesterfield sofas and polished timber tables and desks sit alongside gold plated steel frame showcases that product hangs in. A low lit corridor with timber clad walls holding minimally hung product, again on gold rails, overlooks a beautiful sweeping staircase in white, with blue carpet and black ironmongery balustrade. Read More…

Shed 5 Restaurant, Melbourne

I love the scale of this restaurant in Melbourne, Shed 5 has been designed by Loop Creative, with an industrial/warehouse look and feel. The project is currently still only at visualisation stage.
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Does/is Retail Design Need to change?

Retail design creativity has to be driven by new innovative technological thinking. I’ve recently been considering the retail design situation in the high street and many recurring shopping centres. It’s becoming too static. Samey. New shopping centres like Westfield are regurgitating the same look and feel, and the same shopfits. Flagship has become roll out, or visa versa.

We work on Retail design and delivery in my agency, approving new shop designs in shopping centres all over the country. A common problem is that landlords are desperate to get big brands in to shopping centres and whilst they want the best look for their malls in terms of shop design, they do not want to rock the boat so much by demanding more elaborate, show stopping designs that results in tenants deciding to opt out. But as brand guardians, is of course our desire to see thought provoking or jaw dropping design. Read More…