22 March 2014

A.P.C. opens in Melbourne and broadens the fashion landscape

Words: Matt Willms
Images: Matt Willms

The Kayne tick of approval, minimalism, pale wood and coveted collaborations with Nike, M/M, Bonton, Vanessa Seward and Aesop; A.P.C. opened its first Australian store in Melbourne's QV building in the CBD today.

The Atelier de Production et de Création space finds a perfect fit within Melbourne's fashion landscape with the French label's understated daywear, simple lines and nautical stripes.

The full women’s and men’s Spring/Summer 2014 collection, as well as accessories, can now be purchased on Lonsdale Street.

French architect Laurent Deroo designed the store with Kelvin Ho from Akin Creative, the Sydney based architecture and interior design agency who've created stores for Incu, Sass and Bide, Bassike and Ksubi.

A.P.C. joins a list of international retailers to flagship in Melbourne before Sydney, potentially forecasting Australia's fashion-retail future.

Swedish giant H&M will open their biggest store after extensive renovations in the iconic GPO next month, with their premier brand COS to set up shop across the road in the Strand shortly after.

Japan's Uniqlo attempted to place themselves in Melbourne consumer’s minds with a soft opening pop-up store on Swanston Street at the end of last year and ahead of their grand opening in Emporium.

Melbourne already boasts a Comme Des Garçons pocket tucked away in a CBD laneway and a Kenzo store alongside prestigious retailers on Little Collins Street, while Sydneysiders can only buy into these brands online or through local stockists.

ACNE and Nudie Jeans also placed confidence in shoppers with ACNE opening another Melbourne store in Armadale in 2010 before opening its second London store on Pelham Street just last year, while Nudie only recently opened up its first London space in Soho, when Melbourne already has shops in both the City and on Chapel Street.

Unlike Zara, British high street giant Topshop Topman also made its Australian debut in Melbourne when it opened its doors on Chapel Street, South Yarra in 2011, the Sydney store followed about a year later on the corner of George and Market Street in the CBD.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics released a report in November which showed Melbourne overtaking Sydney in population size by 2030, while another projection estimates the overtake to occur in 2053; either way Melbourne seems to be the first choice for international retailers to lay down their bricks and mortar.

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