Sleek Sophistication

The Retail Store Design of Carducci Canal Walk

06 OCTOBER 2018


As a high-end fashion retailer, Carducci has earned a reputation of distinction that spans over 30 years.

On a quest to translate their designer fashion philosophy into a tangible retail space, Carducci called upon the retail interior design service of AB Design to masterfully construct their illustrious Canal Walk flagship store in 2016.

Elegant professionalism encompasses the Carducci label of designer clothing.

Carducci’s ethos of grand simplicity and sophistication needed to be communicated through the design and implementation of an innovative retail space.

AB Design therfore launched into a three-month design process to capture the grandeur of this reputable fashion brand. Boasting fresh styles and an allure toward sleek professionalism, the new Canal Walk store was to evoke a luxurious yet functional retail experience for anyone walking through the regal archway and bold entrance pillars that are now its landmark characteristics.

The grand simplicity of a statement archway leads clients into the store.

Stylish functionality – striking the right balance

Well-appointed fitting rooms were installed with spacious interiors boasting plush pile carpeting for supreme comfort. Set on an elevated platform to create a visual spectacle of the tailoring process, clients quite literally take to the ‘stage’ to fit on clothing at their leisure.

The retail store design also needed to offer maximum style balanced with functionality for the optimum client experience. The main floor therefore boasts an array of mirrors, a lounge area and bold signage which add to the upmarket ambience of this designer space.

Custom cabinetry with mobile storage solutions and a tailor-made rail system were also commissioned to allow for a variety of layout options that could easily adapt as the brand grows into the space.

The colours of Carducci add vibrancy against the monotone scheme of the retail store design.

An eclectic choice of finishes

From concept to installation, each design element was carefully considered. From the meticulous selection of modern finishes to the overall atmosphere created with sleek lines, contemporary lighting and flexible display units, each detail adds to the eclectic mix of materials used to enhance the client’s instore experience.

A blend of contemporary materials forms the backdrop against which the Carducci range of fashion can take centre stage.

Carefully selected material details include:

  • Solid wood – from the honey-toned hues emitted by the solid oak flooring to the choice of wooden display cabinets, this timeless material adds depth and richness to the space.
  • Slate – the luxury of natural stone adds a beautiful textural quality to the floors in this store and creates complexity and contrast in the overall design scheme.
  • Wall panelling – with a subtle touch of sophistication, walls are given texture and chic European flair with added wood panels in a neutral shade.
  • Leather – carefully curated leather elements bring a sense of rich opulence with functional durability to enhance the design scheme.
  • Glass and mirror – polished and reflective surfaces add to the high-end design.

Let’s hear from the design team:

Elegant. Luxurious. Refined. This is how AB Design’s Creative Director, Aidan Bennetts, describes the overall look of the Carducci Canal Walk store. We chatted to Aidan to find how the design team managed to exceed client expectations during this exciting project.

From planning to execution: Customised railing systems offer adaptable storage.

What was your design brief for this high-end retail space?

“The client wanted a luxurious space that would reflect the detailed tailored craftsmanship of the Carducci product. The space needed to have flexible merchandising displays allowing the salespeople to adjust the layouts according to the seasonal ranges. The colour palette of the store needed to be monotonal as the clothes themselves are typically colourful and needed to stand on their own.”

How did you translate the unique Carducci brand and reputation into a tangible space?

“I used a few key techniques that I thought where representational of the Carducci reputation. On the walls I created distinct French panelling. The floors, we embedded with a solid oak floor in a classic herringbone pattern. We then detailed the space with other solid wood elements as well as some rich textural elements clad in leather. To put the luxurious touch in we used glass and mirror creatively to reflect the internal ambience we created.

To create a design such as this requires a lot of discipline; the typical thinking is to employ novelty trinkets that distract, however in this space we aimed to pair-down the design decisions, opting for essential, sophisticated and timeless elements.”

We look forward to watching this brand evolve in the future as the retail store design brings new opportunity for growth and increased sophistication.

Tamsyn Cornelius