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Armadillo makes #2 on AFR BOSS Best Places To Work List

Armadillo has just placed second in AFR BOSS Best Places to Work List 2023. We take a peak at the global company’s newly opened Melbourne showroom.

Armadillo makes #2 on AFR BOSS Best Places To Work List

Gaining an Endorsed Sustainability Design Assessment from the City of Yarra, Armadillo’s new Melbourne showroom is as ethically sound as the company it houses. Kicking goals across the board, the company has also backed up its ethical ethos by being named number 2 in the Manufacturing & Consumer Goods category of the 2023 AFR BOSS Best Places To Work List.

Praised for cultivating a supportive and stimulating environment that nurtures the personal and professional growth of employees at all levels, we thought this the perfect opportunity to step into the realm of Armadillo, and visit one of the global company’s newest (local) flagships.

Designed in collaboration with architect David Goss, the Fitzroy-located showroom celebrates the industrial heritage of the original building through a material palette that allows the scale and magnificence of the site a second life:

“During the build we tried to keep as much of the heritage fabric visible as we could but at the same time create a more contemporary layer that represents where Fitzroy is at now,” says Goss, director of Studio Goss

Related: Armadillo’s rustic ‘Nook’ collection delivers head to toe

Moreover, the world of architecture and design is embedded in the building’s history as a former furniture manufacturing site. As such, during restoration, Armadillo was sensitive to the building’s nature, selecting materials, such as handmade tiles, oak and natural cork.

“The materials we chose with David were selected to make the space feel warm and inviting. We wanted to conjure a more refined aesthetic that also made for a compelling contrast against the raw materials of the original facade,” says Jodie Fried, Armadillo’s co-founder.

As the sixth physical incarnation of the brand, the Melbourne showroom follows the recent opening of a new flagship in San Francisco’s Presido Heights neighbourhood and existing showrooms in Los Angeles, New York, Brisbane and Sydney.

For Armadillo, the site in Fitzroy, Melbourne, offered both an historic connection and contemporary neighbourhood amongst a good mix of design studios, galleries and homewares.

“Over the years we’ve been lucky to collaborate with leading lights in the Melbourne design community and it feels important to have an equally inspiring space to house our collection and continue building these relationships,” says Sally Pottharst, Armadillo’s co-founder.

That said, it was also essential the space be large enough to cater to both trade and retail. “We are thrilled to introduce the Armadillo retail experience to Melbourne for the first time,” Pottharst adds.

Taking its cues from bespoke tailoring, the showroom reimagines the traditional model for rug retailing. To this end, the design includes rails of garment sized samples that allow clients to see and feel Armadillo’s rugs in a hands on experience of feel, composition, sheen, colour depth and spring in a simplified model.

As the first Australian and American rug maker to achieve B Corp status, the new showroom is entirely in keeping with Armadillo’s position as a purpose driven brand.

Indeed, sustainability and environmental impact were cornerstone considerations in the design of the showroom. “We’re proud to be using rainwater tanks and solar panels to help offset our greenhouse gas emissions. Any additional energy is purchased only from environmentally conscious suppliers meaning that all of our Australian showrooms now operate entirely on green power,” says Alarna Rose, Armadillo’s head of purpose.


Joseph Gardner

Sharyn Cairns

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