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Can Technology Improve The Designer-Builder Relationship?

The simple design tool making the impossible possible. Everyone said loopcreative’s plan for Alquema’s flagship store couldn’t be done, but they knew better. We find out how 3D printing turned an abstract design into reality.



BY Indesignlive

May 2nd, 2017


Visit Alquema’s flagship store in Sydney’s Queen Victoria Building and you may not be the first to confuse it for a gallery.

Design studio loopcreative’s elegant, refined treatment of the space highlights each item while allowing it to speak for itself, much like an exhibit of great works of art. “[The owner] could have a showing here,” explains interior designer Michelle Grimm. “She could take all the clothes out and have paintings hanging.”

Perhaps the store’s most striking piece is a giant custom designed, sculptural steel rack that displays clothing while guiding shoppers through the space, dictating the way they experience the brand. Amazingly, if not for loopcreative’s forward thinking this centrepiece would never exist. “We had no fewer than five builders tell us that what we had designed could not be built,” recalls loopcreative director Rod Faucheux.

So the team turned to technology for their answer. By printing 3D nylon models, Faucheux and Grimm were able to make their idea tangible and simple. It was this process that opened the door to a builder who could grasp their concept and help them realise it.

The final piece is nothing short of spectacular. Owning the store’s pride of place, the rack stands as a remarkable tribute to the fact that nothing is impossible with some ingenuity, determination and the right means of communication.

 

Read the full story in Indesign #69, on sale May 11.

Get the specs for this project here. 


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