Early in 2015 KitX, the second women’s clothing line from Kit Willow started appearing in Sydney boutiques. Later that year she opened a tangible home for the brand on the corner of Oxford and Hopewell Streets in an 1850s corner building, one she had always wanted to make the most of.
KitX uses materials such as organic cotton, hemp, ethically produced tencel and hand-woven silk. Exquisite fabrics have been sewn by skilled hands and made to celebrate a women’s figure. Pieces are timeless and feminine without being overly so.
For Willow, maintaining the existing beauty of the building was key, a philosophy shared by Melbourne-based architects, March Studio. It stripped back six prior fit-outs to unveil the original shell.
A pre-existing upstairs room had the best natural lights, so half of its floor was removed to see into the level upstairs. There is a 10-metre-high ceiling and a view of the fig tree outside. Plants are a theme, including a 40-year-old, four-metre-high palm tree.
Despite using the original features of a building designed more than a century ago, the store’s overall aesthetic is highly contemporary. Fluorescent bar lights dangle from the ceiling, highlighting a monochrome theme of white brick walls against black metal bars that trail the walls, from which the collection hangs.