A custom-made radial steel clothing rack is the major design feature of this retail fitout at the Queen Victoria Building in Sydney.
The 75sqm space is the new base for Australian fashion brand, Alquema and has been designed by Sydney design studio, Loopcreative to reflect the owner’s love of simple, elegant, gallery-style spaces and the minimalism of Japanese design.
The main feature is the sculptural steel clothing rack which according to Loopcreative director, Rod Faucheux almost never happened.
“We had no fewer than five builders tell us that what we had designed could not be built,” he notes.
“[But this] only encouraged us to push forward and find someone that could help us realise our unusual new design.”
The team used Autodesk 3DS Max create a design model and to provide high quality 3D renders to the client. They also sent the model to 3D Printing Studios who printed out a nylon 3D model about A3 size, which Faucheux notes was great for the builder and client to see so they could understand his team's vision.
Before and after: Loopcreative use 3DS Max to produce realistic renders so that there are no surprises for the client (render above, finished product below)
From the 3DS Max model, Loopcreative then broke the shape down into 15 individual elements to suit the capability of the subcontractor’s pipe bending machine and a full size prototype was produced by SG Shopfitting on the factory floor. Minor adjustments were then made and then production began.
The frame was eventually delivered to site in four pieces and welded in-situ, and secured to the floor with concealed base plates under the timber.
And the end result? “Exactly how we had envisioned it in those early design stages,” Faucheux says. And he liked it so much that he had the builders fabricate him a desktop polished stainless steel version as a studio keepsake.
Other design elements within the store include a series of variable height jewellery display boxes, rolling mirrors and custom designed mannequin light frames to create a unique point of difference. The focus on elegance and design continues right through to the mannequins with custom chrome-dipped torsos sourced from the Netherlands.
A prototype was manufactured and put together on the factory floor
A polished stainless steel version of the clothes rack sits in the Loopcreative studio