Design Process

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Crema Espresso Westfield Carindale shop design by David Cuschieri

Outlining the shop design process

The design process involves a number of steps to ensure the best outcome possible for you. The outline below is a brief summary of the steps involved from initial consultation to the final fitted out tenancy. The aim of the design process is to ensure that everything has been carefully considered to ensure that your project is completed to the highest possible standards, on time and to budget.

Outlining the shop design process

Our obligation free initial consultation helps you to understand who we are, what we do and how we can help you. The purpose of the meeting is also for us to understand what you want to achieve, your goals, aspirations and the scope of work that will be involved. This meeting will help us to be able to best provide you with a fee proposal.

Outlining the shop design process

After the initial consultation we will provide you with a detailed quotation of what we will provide for you including our understanding of your requirements. This will be outlined in a fee proposal, and depending on the size of the project and Clients requirements, we will provide an hourly rate or fixed quotation.

An onsite inspection and measure is conducted prior to commencing the shop design.

Outlining the shop design process

Upon signed acceptance of our fee proposal and deposit received, we organise a meeting where we can further expand upon the initial brief. This meeting is often conducted onsite where possible so that ideas and initial thoughts can be communicated clearly and in real time. It also allows us to conduct a site survey and measure as often Landlord plans may not provide all the required information. Additional information may be supplied by the Client at this time as we gain an understanding of how the Client runs his day to day business operations and where we use our many years of expertise to suggest possible alternatives. This time is utilised to gain a detailed insight into how the business will operate and how best we can ensure that present as well as future functions are carefully thought of.

The most important skill any designer can bring to the table is to listen and understand the Client’s requirements including budget and business practices. At Retail Design Lab we pride ourselves on our developed listening skills which ensures that the process is as smooth and streamlined as possible and that the Client feels rest assured that the designer ‘gets’ them and what they are wanting to achieve.

Preliminary design concept hand drawn sketches

Outlining the shop design process

From the information gained from the Client and our suggestions we produce a floor plan that takes into accounts the functional requirements and the limitations of the space. This is the most important part of the design process to ensure that the space is best utilised and takes into account future needs. Additionally, once the floor plan has been signed off, we begin to look in detail and the ‘look’ and ‘feel’ of the design, producing coloured concept elevations and providing a finishes board.

At this stage, once the Client is satisfied with the floor plan and the ‘look’ and ‘feel’ of the design, it is submitted to the Landlord, often the shopping centre, for review and feedback. Upon receipt of the feedback, the drawings are updated to reflect the comments and final documentation and specification begins.

Hand drawn concept sketches

Coloured concept elevation

Outlining the shop design process

This is where a complete set of documentation drawings are provided which includes detailed drawings of joinery and signage, lighting and electrical plans, finishes and equipment specifications, door schedules, etc. A scope of works is also included where required to ensure that the best possible outcome if the project is to be tendered to a number of shopfitters. For more information on design documentation packages click here.


Outlining the shop design process

We provide information and guidance to ensure that Landlord approvals and certification is as streamlined as possible. A lot of the ‘behind the scenes’ administration goes into ensuring that the design process is as stress free as possible. We are also able to provide guidance for relevant codes including Disability in the Workplace and Building Code of Australia requirements. We can help to organise hydraulics engineers and Council Plumbing Approvals and other approvals to get the project fitted out in a timely manner. We may also be able to help you with the tendering process.

Outlining the shop design process

Once the shopfitter has been nominated, we are able to make regular site visits for an additional fee, however, throughout the fitout process we ensure that we are able to respond to any needs from the shopfitters should any unforeseen circumstances arise to resolve the issue immediately ensuring a smooth fit out.

Project being fitted out



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