Plaster, travertine and pearly onyx are some of the materials that design studio Akin Atelier has used to form the tactile interiors of this womenswear store in Melbourne, Australia.
Camilla and Marc takes over the ground floor of a 19th-century terrace in Armadale, an affluent suburb of Melbourne that’s home to a number of luxurious fashion boutiques.
Akin Atelier has already designed seven other stores for the womenswear brand, but wanted this particular branch to act as “an homage to the sense of touch”.
The studio also hoped that utilising a tactile selection of materials would give the store’s awkwardly long floor plan a warm, homely quality.
“By championing hand-craft and specialist trades, the store creates an opportunity to experience the interiors as a series of surfaces and textures,” the studio explained.
“It is not until the visitor is immersed in the store, that the diversity of material application, and the relationship between space and texture becomes apparent.”
Inside, the store has been organised into a sequence of four rooms, each separated by a short flight of steps and a travertine architrave.
Walls throughout the first room are rendered with marmorino, a type of plaster made out of lime putty and crushed marble.
The upper portion of the walls is a pale peachy hue, while a darker terracotta shade is found lower down.
Travertine was also used to create the skirting and subtle chequerboard floor.
Dominating the centre of the space is a bespoke counter crafted from pearl-wave onyx, inlaid with a glass case where the brand can present jewellery pieces.
The chunky counter dog-legs up into the second, slightly elevated room, where the flooring switches to herringbone-patterned oak. Garments hang from slim white rails that extend outwards from the wall.
In the following third room are three changing rooms, each fronted with burnt-orange curtains made out of bouclé fabric from Kvadrat and Raf Simons’ Helia collection.
An extra changing cubicle can be found back in the second room, but here the curtain is attached to a track on the ceiling.
Two expansive windows were introduced to the third section of the store, illuminating what was previously a light-starved part of the plan.
The fourth room accommodates a three-tier display shelf for accessories and a relaxed seating area.
It is dressed with a beige sheepskin armchair and a couple of sculptures placed on stone plinths, added by the studio as a small nod to the art galleries that once populated Armadale.
A new skylight and glazed opening have also been punctuated in the rear wall, providing views out onto a greenery-filled courtyard landscaped by Myles Baldwin.
Akin Atelier is led by Kelvin Ho and is based in Sydney’s Surry Hills neighbourhood.
The studio’s Camilla and Marc store is shortlisted in the small retail interior category of this year’s Dezeen Awards, where it will go head-to-head against four other projects.
Among them is the Flamingo Estate Harvest Shop, which features a vibrant garden-themed mural, and Rookies opticians, which is decked out with geometric shapes.
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