This month Radical Yes opened the doors to our first permanent home and stunning concept Fitting Salon in North Melbourne. Nestled in between Martin Fella vintage and North Melbourne Books (and just a few steps from cult bakery, Beatrix) on Queensberry St, we could not be more excited to settle into the new space.
To introduce you to the new Fitting Salon, we took a moment to sit down with Radical Yes Founder and Creative Director Kerryn Moscicki who reveals the stores design intent and plans for the space.
We welcome all our Wonder Women to the salon for shared conversation and a personal fitting experience.
You can find The Fitting Salon at 554 Queensberry St, North Melbourne. More info and opening hours here.
Interview by Alex Birch, Images by Agnieszka Chabros
Working with Studio Koops to design the Queensberry St Fitting Salon, each detail is meticulously thought out. Can you talk us through the original design brief?
The shop is a very beautiful original 1930s strip style store. We fell in love straight away with the vintage feel to the bones of the shop, which include a stunning original pressed tin ceiling and open bay window. The brief we gave to Zoe from Studio Koops was to reflect that sensibility of something old worldly, and slightly eccentric. The mood was also inspired by a Parisian apartment with an old Melbourne type of influence – quite imperfect in a luxurious way. Think the bohemian hangouts of Collins Street Melbourne in the 1920s with a thoroughly modern twist.
The Fitting Salon is a unique vision. What sort of experience can customers expect from visiting Queensberry St?
The idea was to create a sacred space that was void of the usual signifiers of a retail store. We wanted the space to be completely immersive and like a gentle warm hug where you would feel really comfortable and welcome to take your shoes off. There is a sense of intimacy to the space. Customers can expect to be pampered, and personally attended to. We have tea during the week and champagne on Friday evenings and love nothing more than to hear about our wonder women customers stories and where our shoes are taking them. Our customers are such inspiring women and are really the nucleus of every action in our business. I believe the experience the space offers reflects this.
As a multifunctional space, will Radical Yes continue to hold events and workshops here?
Absolutely. Ever since we opened our first store the objective for our physical spaces has always been to create an environment that contributes to the local creative community in much the same way as a French Salon, whether that be through community minded talks and workshops or running things like drawing classes and mediation evenings.
Before Radical Yes took over our lives, I used to run regular ‘secret’ yoga classes for friends in my husband’s studio. This space is absolutely crying out for a Secret Yoga Sunday! Maybe we will welcome Spring like this first.
Walking us through the store, can you describe some of your favourite interior details?
It goes without saying I love every single detail of the store so it is hard to answer this simply.
I think our 3 meter high Green Velvet curtain, which Zoe’s incredibly talented husband Ben designed and hand-made for us, is something of a transatlantic feat and really represents the collaborative nature of our brand. Our maker in Shenzhen helped us source the 50 meters of fabric that we needed to construct this insane idea and then our other very dear friends, and long time collaborators Dave and Anne from Cracker-Jack Studios helped create the frame that neatly holds the nearly 40 kilos of weight the curtain creates through it’s billowing pleating. It is part Wizard of Oz magic, part welcome to the stage theatrical and 110% uniquely radical.
Zoe also custom designed and had built for us two L-Shaped reflective mirror lights that hang very low from the ceiling and feature a hidden inlay of LED lighting that magically light up the lilac painted roof. Lying on the floor and looking up at this ceiling is like a mediation for me that creates an instant sense of creativity and purpose and reminds me that anything is possible if you believe it to be so. All of this is reflected by my ultimate dream really, but conceived completely at Zoe’s serendipitous suggestion, of full length dance mirrors housed all the way down one side of the shop which makes the space feel double the size and reflects the curtain in the most magical renaissance way.
There are other small details like the Matisse homage of Sun, Moon and Star foil cut outs above the lilac painted front door and a poem I wrote that we had gold foiled on the inner window for the threshold of the space that reminds our customers that they are strong and beautiful and walking into a radical parallel universe, that are really important to me. Little things that make me smile and feel radical and proud when I walk in each day.