Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Sportsgirl's New Flagship Store


The new Sportsgirl Flagship store opened on Saturday on Bourke Street here in Melbourne. The bicycle above is part of the viral marketing campaign for the store which I saw on the street. If you were one of the 1st 50 through the doors on opening day you got a free $50 voucher. I didn't bother doing this though because I thought people would have camped out or something. I did head down in the afternoon though to check it out. Sportsgirl isn't exactly my favourite brand, I don't think I have bought anything there for more than 5 years or so, but I do have an interest in retail design and branding having studied it. I wasn't able to take any photos myself so these are what I found on the website.

I do find it weird that they no longer have a front display window. Windows are really important in retail. If you put an unpopular top in the window it will sell out really fast, basically windows are a giant billboard for the store and brand so I really don't know why they decided not to have one.

Thay also must have been to Tokyo because some elements of the interior were obviously inspired by stores there. For example they had these scrolling LED signs everywhere which is what the UT Flagship store in Harajuku has. They also had all these diamond shapes which were very similar to Herzog De Meuron's Prada building in Harajuku.


The "vintage" section. Who buys vintage at Sportsgirl?

I like the way they have displayed the shoes on pulled out drawers. I feel like I have seen this somewhere else but I'm not sure where. (Now I remember the Urban Outfitters stores in New York do sorta similar displays with seemingly old furniture)

The change room area is cool, very glamorous.

The dj booth is so lame....I did see Streetparty's Hugh dj'ing when I was there. I used to go to his parties way back in 2003 but Streetparty is dead now (was kinda like the boombox/misshapes of Melbourne at one stage...well at least it wanted to be)

Chip Chop have done a collection for Sportsgirl. I do love Chip Chop but these bags are basically the same price as the regular Chip Chop stuff so I don't see the point of getting it at Sportsgirl, everyone is going to have it.

The store also has makeup counters so you can get your makeup done, a VIP styling service and hot boys taking your photo at the front of the store with polaroid cameras. I'm not sure how long these services will stay but they are fun if you have the time. I do realise that they have basically copied Topshop with all of these ideas but at least they are trying. Retail in this country is so tame compared to New York, Tokyo and London so we really needed this. However I'm not sure if it will succeed. The store is very messy and chopped up with too many ideas going on in a small space. Just across the road is the Supre flagship store which I would say is 100 million times better because it has the 1 theme, the nightclub, and it sticks with it. Maybe Sportsgirl is unsure of where it sits in the market and as a brand? I don't know, but I do know that I'll be going back to the store when they have a sale, some of the dresses weren't too bad.

23 comments:

  1. wow very nice detailed post :) sometimes i think sportsgirl is trying too hard to be up there.. but i still go in and have a look around on the occasion, and if i do find something i like ill buy it :D

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  2. yeah, at least they're giving it a go. The DJ booth always gives me a chuckle, especially as it's true that the dj is usually some washed up former scenester hard up for some cash. Not that I'd knock anyone for taking the money, hell I would, but still...

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  3. any idea who did the design? i agree it is a bit messy, a bit too much going on, but all those diamonds are pretty cool (if a little herzog + de meuron derivative) and the high ceiling gives it a really good open feeling that i think counters the messiness pretty well.

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  4. Hey Anna, I'm not sure who did the design, I have been trying to find out but there is little to no information online.

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  5. yeah, have worn out my google-fu trying to find out who did it. though i do know that the interlocking geometric 'balls' at the front, they're by chris bosse and the university of sydney masters of digital architecture students.

    an interesting move not to have mannequins in the window though. i reckon that in a month or so there will be mannequins tucked in front of the 'installation'. it is certainly eye catching though!

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  6. i can already picture those bags on every girl...
    the store looks pretty cool- but i havent actually visited it yet. well @ least sportsgirl are making their stores more interesting.

    i'm scared of the supre flagship store. its so dark..and vast!

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  7. I can't believe 'Sportsgirl' has a Vintage section. I assume it isn't vintage at all, but that it abides with the contemporary trend of marketing older looking garmets and accessories which were actually manufactured in Taiwan three weeks earlier. It makes me really cranky actually.

    This is the first time I've commented here, but I absolutely love your blog.

    Xx

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  8. Thank you for a super review. You've saved me a trip into Sportsgirl for what looks like a fairly mediocre collection.

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  9. Hello there Hayley, this is a great blog, I'm glad I found it! I love your pictures, and your clothes and decorating style! What do Sportsgirl have if they don't have a shop window??? I'm a bit confused, as I haven't been into the city since it opened so I can't imagine what the entrance would be like.
    Anyway, is it ok if I link your blog, I really like reading it :)

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  10. hayley! it's lepa, you may remember me from such countries as japan. how's it all going? i miss japan so goddamn much.
    so i have a favour to ask you, i'm working on building a photography folio, and i was scratching my head trying to think of interesting, eye-catching people to photograph and i remembered you, so i google-stalked you. would be interested in doing some modelling ?? i can't afford to pay you, but i'd give you digital copies of all the photos of course. my email is leposava - at - gmaildotcom. hope you've been well
    xo

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  11. Adore this blog <3

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  12. the store actually looks kind of cool. too bad we dont have these in the US

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  13. I really like the rabbit tee.

    'Misshapes' as in Geordan Nicol and those other two?

    I went to school with him in Canada.My highschool had a specail arts program sort of like 'FAME' minus the leotards. I'd elaborate but then I'd probably get sued for slander and then I'd have no shoe money left!!!

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  14. Don't live in Aus so never saw this shop, but thought it was interesting your comment on windows. I thought the same thing until I read about Abercrombie's merchandising. They also own Hollister and another store I forget the name of. Their stores sell insane amount of merchandise with very similar store design and no windows at all. Instead the window space creates a barrier so that the customer is separated from the mall and is embedded in the surf hut / canoe store / New York brownstone experience (depending on which brand it is). It's very effective in keeping out the non-target market - either you belong there or you don't and the absence of windows helps to create the barrier for the non-belongers.

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  15. http://www.thatsmelbourne.com.au/Whatson/msfw/Pages/Snapped.aspx

    Photographs from last night...before it went pear shaped...hahahahahaxxxx

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  16. a vintage section in sportsgirl? hahaha. the store in general sounds kinda fun even though i never shop there.

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  17. The "vintage" section of Sportsgirl had dresses priced around $100 last time I looked... yeah...

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  18. I was gunna say Top Shop rip off but then you typed that in the final paragraph. Top Shop in Dublin do a vintage section. I think it is meant to be the Camden Lock for people who do not like vegan food, dreadlocks and wall to wall goths. Of course it is a total rip off but I must admit I do try on the odd item when passing. Top shop did all those extras when they launched too, even had free bottles of water, but it soon tapered off. I guess the idea is to make it a destination for shopping, particularly for aspirational teenagers. I just wonder if they have the spending power to justify it.
    I used to love Sportsgirl, but it was too dear for me!
    xx

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  19. the interior design was done by london based design firm HMKM.

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  20. SPORTSGIRL is awesome..serz there doing really well for themselves .. n the vintage is vinatge Grant..otherwise they wouldnt name it vintage!! have u even been in the store to check it out...yer sucks thats its expensive..but vintage is worth wayy more then 100 so who cares...any way great blog..

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  21. the room u say is the chnaging rooms..thats not the changing room..thats the style me studio.. where u can have a one on one session with a professional stylist that did wokr for grazia magazine and american apparal.. its free. plus the changing roooms is big and beautiful..u should really check the shop out b4 u write a blog dont just get pics from the net

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  22. sportsgirl's vintage section annoys me. i was there today looking for a plain black fitted t-shirt (30? no thanks!), and i had a quick browse at the bags...$155?? fucking sportsgirl. it's the same as with any vintage stores though...find something good in an op-shop, pay under $20 for it and sell it for over $100 to people too busy/lazy to do the hunting themselves!

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