2012 Melbourne Design Awards

Key Dates

cylk on Chapel [DRAFT]



Store/brand Overview

cylk is a brand with a soul and a story. As the latest recipient of the prestigious International Apparel Federation Design Award, cylk opened its first flagship shopping destination at 497 Chapel Street, South Yarra after the successful tenure of 3 pop-up stores around Melbourne, Australia.

The store focusses on the compelling and unique aspects of the brand that include innovation, the high prevalence of natural fibres not only within the collection but through the fixtures that make up the store, and also being a pioneer in seamless technology; a sustainble knitting process that minimizes wastage and reduces energy consumption.

The flagship store focusses on personalising the shopping experience for the brands valued clients. Branching into the international market, with stockists already in Canada, South Africa and New Zealand, cylk also plan to open boutiques in selected locations across Melbourne, Sydney and Perth and aim to have 3-5 stores within the next 2 years.



Store/brand Brief

Keshia Abeysekera, CEO/Creative Director says “The new space conveys a sense of who we are, from the signature scents of the candles we burn to the hanging glass terrariums and raw textures of the exposed brick. It’s also really exciting for us to have that direct relationship with our customers and to see how they engage with the brand, which is the most valuable part of having your own bricks and mortar store.”

The store showcases the full ready-to-wear collection of feminine silhouettes combined with intricate detail to offer a perfectly easy-to-wear wardrobe. The iconic seamless body con dress remains an essential element in the cylk collection, and combined with textural linens, geometric prints and luxurious silks provide a modern update to the classic wardrobe. To compliment the fashion component of the collection, the store also features the cylk’s seamless intimates collection of underwear sets, sculpting shapewear and essential layering pieces, which compliment the range perfectly.

Store/brand Innovation / Need

cylk began in 2006 with a small capsule collection of 100% silk garments and has established itself as a pioneer of seamless knitting and sustainable yarn development. cylk is also Renowned for its innovation in seamless technology, a sustainable knitting process that reduces fabric consumption and wastage, consuming less energy than traditional garment manufacturing methods. Cylk was the first Australian label to be awarded the prestigious 2011 International Design Award for the “Best way of working with fabric”.

Placing great importance on creating a personalised shopping experience, cylk provide their guests with the opportunity to engage directly with the designers via live chat. cylk also offers a VIP ‘by appointment only’ service which allows the clients to interact with the stylists and designers, giving them a more in-depth understanding of the product, the materials used and the inspiration behind the collection.

cylk also put in place an initiative that supports 3 charities whereby $5 from every purchase is donated to the charity of the guests choice. cylk guests are encouraged to take a rock and place it in the corresponding cabinet that represents their donation to that charity.

The 3 charities that the brand currently supports are:
SecondBite (local)
The Indigenous Literacy Foundation (National)
The Hunger Project (International)

cylk plan to launch an organic café in the boutique’s outdoor courtyard in early 2013.

Retail Challenge

The flagship store works towards creating an engaging and personalised shopping experience for its clients. In a tough retail climate it is necessary to provide a level of service above and beyond what is expected, and one which gives an added dimension to the online space. The cylk store is incorporates a level of interactivity with the use of iPads in store, but focuses primarily on the personal contact that the clients have with both the product and the stylists in store.

The cylk woman is confident, independent and effortless. She is a 25-45 year old professional in a creative or semi-creative industry who is image conscious, in both fashion and fitness. She is ambitious and aspires to lead a balanced and fulfilled life.

The cylk woman appreciates quality and luxury first and foremost. She exudes casual elegance at all times and values premium materials, well-crafted and beautifully fitted designs. She opts for refined detailing and has a classic yet modern aestheticism. She makes her fashion choices based primarily on aesthetics but the sustainable element is an added benefit, particularly if the product offers a luxurious and feel and luxe appearance.

The cylk woman is appreciative of the extra level of service she receives in store, and while she shops online, she enjoys the traditional shopping experience of visiting the brand space, experiencing the clothing by trying it on and being styled while in store.


cylk has established itself as a pioneer of seamless knitting and sustainable yarn development. Seamless knitting is a method of manufacturing that is more sustainable than traditional cut and sew methods as it eliminates wastage and reduces energy consumption. The cylk collection itself has a strong predominance of natural and sustainable fibres including super fine bamboo, silk, modal, tencel and wool.

The flagship boutique incorporates natural and recycled materials into its fit out and brings an indoor garden space to life with hanging terrariums. The wooden counter and mannequin plinths are made using recycled timber. The window displays incorporate natural elements that compliment the rustic textures of the interior and the natural brickwork has been exposed and white washed to offset the copper fixtures and cherrywood coat hangers that line the store.

cylk have enlisted students from Kangan Institute to collaborate on a sustainable installation to coincide with the Spring Summer 2012 collection launch in store. The final design involved birdhouses made from recycled timber, screens made with oversized bamboo and recycled paper-mache eggs and nests. The raw and natural elements used in the design best represented the brand's aesthetic and the instillation was based on the premise of reusability and versatility, again minimising the wastage that commonly occurs in the fashion industry.

This award recognises the leading retailer of designer products. The award is allocated in three categories based on the number of retail outlets in Australia (Less than 5 stores, 5+ stores). Digital retailers may be included. 
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