More Than Just A Load Of Old Cobblers!

November 8, 2011

“Size doesn’t matter”, we have all heard this expression, and needless to say living in Dubai we have probably heard it more often than not. With interior design and specifically retail design we are of the belief that size really doesn’t matter, a 700 SqFt space can be as equally creative if not more so as a 100,000 SqFt space, in fact many times we feel that working with smaller spaces challenge us as designers to be even more creative as we have to think outside of the box to make certain elements or design features work. (No more cliches after here, I promise)

For us space is never really an issue as we like to pride ourselves on always being able to work with space rather than against it, like space, another area in interior design that we like to focus on is working with projects that are not the obvious type that one would associate a store designer with. One such project that we have come across recently has been created by likeminded designers. Stewart Hollenstein is a design studio based in NSW Australia, and they have showcased their excellent design talents on the unlikeliest of stages, a cobblers!

I know, you’re probably thinking the same as us, “how could you make a cobblers store attractive?” well they have managed it and we applaud them as we see this concept and project as mirroring our own sentiments that no project is too small, too boring or too flat, great design is design that can be interpreted in any space around any genre. I could ramble on about the elements of the design we like such as the shoe wall that frames the space but it is probably better if you read the description from the designers.

Located in Potts point, Sydney, Cobbler Caballero is a small, family run business dedicated to the repair of shoes, watches and leather goods. Felicity Stewart and Matthias Hollenstein of Stewart Hollenstein were commissioned to develop the brand identity and retail shop design with the family. The shop is conceived as an open workshop, bringing the cobbler and customer into the same space. The workshop is framed by a “shoe library” – a continuous wall of plywood shelving that wraps around the narrow shops walls, allowing for the organization and display of shoes and products. The dark ceiling, floor and walls recede, allowing the craft, texture and machinery of the cobbling process to become the focus.

The shop took over the lease from a previous tenant, and much of the existing building fabric was restored and given a new lease on life in the design, this included the entry mat and timber floor. The use of mirrors on the counter and rear wall allow for customers to inspect their shoes, as well reflecting the activity of the street into the shop.

Text and Images Courtesy of Stewart Hollenstein