Talking Retail Design with Kookai’s Fleur Sutherland

Fleur Sutherland – store designer for Kookai – knows her way around creating beautiful retail spaces. Having work on over 20 stores for Australian brand, Kookai, Sutherland has often called upon WOODCUT to work on custom colours for their retail projects.  While many believe that timber flooring is not sturdy enough for high-traffic environments, Sutherland knows that all it takes is clever maintenance and choosing a quality product.

Here, Sutherland talks selecting floor colours for retail, and why timber flooring is her favourite option for high traffic areas.

You’re the store design manager at Kookai – how many stores have you worked on now?

20+ stores

What drew you to WOODCUT?

Arthur was very open to working with Kookai to achieve a very specific colour and wood grain, which we had not been able to find elsewhere.

There seems to be a notion that high traffic retail and hospitality spaces are better suited to concrete floors – tell us a little bit about how the WOODCUT floors are faring and why you love them for retail design?

The Woodcut timber floors add warmth and texture to the space, whereas, a concrete floor can feel quite cold and masculine. The Woodcut timber floors in our stores are faring really well, and, our fantastic staff do a great job keeping up with the required maintenance routine to keep the floors in mint condition.

How would you describe your experience dealing with WOODCUT?

Woodcut has always worked closely with Kookai to achieve the desired look, feel and quality that we require, and have been as accommodating as possible to achieve tight retail deadlines.

What advice would you give to someone when looking at materials selection for high traffic environments?

Timber flooring is certainly an option for high traffic retail stores, however, you do need to invest in a quality board with a thick topping layer and be prepared to maintain the boards to ensure they don’t get to a point where they require sanding and re-finishing.