Maroske Peech’s new Brunswick pop-up store is synonymous with nostalgia
PHOTOGRAPHY BY MYLES PEDLAR FOR MAROSKE PEACH
IZZY WIGHT LYRICS
“The space has a sense of theater and performance, with the back of the house pulling the strings while the front of the store puts on a show.”
The humble department store holds a special place in the hearts of so many 2010s teenagers. When we were little, an after-school trip to Myer was almost sensory overload; a cacophony of clicking heels, chattering salesmen, and scratching rails with shiny plastic and metal hangers. As a teenager, this is where our style came to life, fueled by displays of patent leather dress shoes and models dressed in silky dress shirts and tailored pants.
For more fashion news, shoots, articles and reports, visit our Fashion section.
For the duo behind the Melbourne-born label Maroske Peech, it was always about the theatricality. Both Elisa Keeler and Jordan Conder were “secret actors” who found themselves in fashion design, launching their flexible ready-to-wear brand almost by accident. And after capturing the creative world with their ballet- and performance-inspired splits, Elisa and Jordan are ready for their next chapter.
Switching from an online-only retail to a physical store is no small feat – that’s why the Maroske Peech pop-up store is the product of a lot of thought, planning and inspiration gathering. Located on Florence Street in Brunswick, the new space aims to “transition from an online fashion brand to a designer in its own right”. Below, Elisa and Jordan explain how the pop-up vision came about.
Tell me a bit about how the vision for the pop-up store Maroske Peech was born.
Our pop-up store is an extension of our 2022 collection, Mall characters. At the start of the design and development phase, we naturally began to reminisce about the old days of department store shopping. We conjured up romanticized childhood memories of leaning our hands against the windows of perfume counters and hiding in clothes racks.
We were inspired by the movies Fabric (2018) and Model (1987). E-commerce has been at the forefront of independent labels like us in Australia and around the world because it’s accessible and manageable. After coming out of lockdown, we felt a reciprocal need for community spaces and thought it was the perfect time to take the plunge and open our own retail space, transitioning from an online fashion brand to a creator in his own right. Retail is about aspirations, which is a theme of our work.
How would you describe the brand’s aesthetic?
Sexy, sporty, stretchy and vintage-inspired. Our references are often something familiar from the past, but it repeats itself now – especially our love for 80s fashion and the nostalgic feeling it evokes. [Our work] also refers to performance and theatre, we always lean on this idea of a lighted stage and a dream. We’re actually both secret comedians who finished fashion school.
What was the process of creating the store like? Have there been any challenges or obstacles along the way?
For us, we really wanted the space to be flexible in layout, able to transform and even move with us as we are still such a small team. We are growing organically and need to be able to move our studio environment to meet our schedule needs. The studio is in a constant state of flux.
Our main intention with setting up the store was to create a welcoming environment that continued the Maroske Peech-isms. The commercial space is a stage and our work space is just behind a curtain. The space has a sense of theater and performance, with the back of the house pulling the strings while the store front puts on a show.
We have procured vintage store layoutlike our beautiful ex-Prada counter that used to be a perfume counter in Myer, and a beautiful magazine rack with publications we often refer to or have been featured in. Our layout is completely handmade, we really wanted the space to feel authentic to our history and our rooms.
With whom did Maroske Peech collaborate on this project?
We are pleased to host a contemporary artist and curator At Spencer Lai’s work Untitled (2022) from their show Snuggle up, friends with thermal benefits. The piece is an eclectic mixed media canvas of faux fur, balsa wood, cotton skull print fabric, deodorant applicator and crab claw. We also worked with the photographer Myles Peddler who shot the space for us, leading to the beautiful dreamy images you can see.
What’s your favorite feature of the store?
The glass window. It really encompasses exactly what we want from the in-store experience, the ability to showcase visual merchandising through a Maroske Peech lens. It’s like a window of ideas and inspiration. We also love the window decals of our logo, especially in the right light when the shade from the sun replicates that mark on the concrete floor.
What do you like about the Melbourne area/creative scene in general?
The sense of community, support and the desire to grow together. It’s an exciting time for many creatives and you can tell it’s just the beginning. The launch of our store also opened up that experience even more and allowed people to access us in person. We can now have one-on-one conversations with our customers and talk about what they like and feel about our pieces, which is very important.
Start planning your visit to the Maroske Peech pop-up store here.