If you have visited Koskela’s Rosebery store recently you might have spotted the retail staff sporting a smart new uniform.
Our lovely friendly retail staff are representatives of the Koskela brand and we saw an opportunity to reflect this with a well-crafted and relaxed yet utilitarian uniform.
Top of our list of considerations was comfort. The Koskela store is in a heritage warehouse that is almost 2,000 m2. That’s a lot of ground to cover. Plus the building has some pretty intense temperature conditions in both summer and winter. Add in that we are a furniture store which frequently re-merchandises and you can understand why we want our staff to be comfortable.
To make a beautiful and practical uniform we turned to one of our favourite fashion labels, Kowtow. This New Zealand company shares a similar ethical ethos to our own and we are huge fans of their understated and elegant clothes.
We worked with Kowtow to develop both a summer and a winter uniform. Both versions have versatile pieces that can be mixed and matched for multiple outfit options. Crafted from hard-wearing natural fabrics, the new uniform is holding up well to the hustle and bustle of retail, and feedback from staff is that it’s very comfortable indeed.
To get an insight into the development of the new uniform, we shot a couple of quick questions to Sadaf Lourie, Kowtow’s Head of Sales.
How did you feel about partnering with Koskela for the retail uniform?
Working on this collaboration has been really special. As an art inspired label, we often turn to furniture and homewares for inspiration, so when this opportunity arose we were naturally curious. Working with a like-minded business that has been established longer than us, we were drawn to Koskela's innovation, and once we learned more about Koskela's commitment to quality and ethics and found it aligned with our own, it all made perfect sense.
What was your process for developing the uniform?
After visiting the Koskela space, we knew the clothes had to be practical in keeping staff cool in summer and warm in winter. Our fair trade certified organic cotton was perfect for this versatility, so we explored styles that worked well layered and on their own. We've kept it simple with classic shirts, denim & knitwear – all complementary to the new Koskela colours.
Are there any plans for Kowtow to come to Australia?
You can currently find Kowtow in 48 stores across Australia, as well as online. We also have a small sales team based in Melbourne and have had a few pop-up stores over the years. It's been a great opportunity to meet some of our Australian customers and figure out our next steps.