The CH:1 Hairdressing salon on Oxford St, Sydney was designed with two key issues in mind – flexibility and eye-catching appeal.  We wanted to create a space that could easily transform, allowing a single person having their haircut to feel as comfortable and celebrated as eight people in the same room.  The second aim was to make the interior the signage, which would highlight the salon in a busy shopping area to the passing cars and buses, as well as pedestrian traffic.

The design began with a series of abstracted drawings and models, playing with concepts taken from hairdressing; cutting, splicing, weaving. A track system was designed to run along the two side walls, where panels could slide, fold and open for changing needs; mirrors, cabinets and tables.  The back wall to the cutting area became a light wall, with the black tracks emphasizing the perspective from the street.  The light wall also designated another interior, where fluorescent tubes behind white Perspex created a heightened, pure form for the intimate act of hair washing.  The main palette of materials and colours appear stark and clean, but are given a subtle depth and richness by highlights of contrasting colours such as in the green and blue lighting in wall panels.

photography by kevin hui