18 Aug 2023

R.M.Williams opens new flagship store in Adelaide’s retail heartland

R.M.Williams has officially opened its South Australian flagship store at Rundle Mall, the oldest CBD retail pedestrian mall in the country. Rundle Mall has been the beating heart of Adelaide’s retail scene for more than 130 years, a fitting new home for one of Australia’s oldest and most iconic boot brands.

3 minute read
Photo Credit: Emma Brasier.

The store, which will supersede the brand’s nearby Gawler Place location, heralds a new era of retail experiences for the 91-year-old business.

Founded in South Australia’s Flinders Ranges in 1932, the brand’s investment in a refreshed Adelaide store is particularly poignant.

The iconic R.M.Williams workshop – where much of the brand’s signature footwear, apparel and accessories are crafted – remains locally situated in the nearby suburb of Salisbury.

R.M.Williams chief executive Paul Grosmann said the Adelaide flagship store represented a new future in craftmanship, innovation and sustainability for the home of R.M.Williams.

“This new location is the beating heart of Adelaide’s vibrant retail scene, the perfect place to service our customer’s needs, tell our unique story and provide an experience that’s crafted for life,” Mr Grosmann said.

“This store is a step up in terms of quality and craftsmanship in line with our strong commitment to local manufacturing.”

R.M.Williams footwear team leader Allyson Edwards, who has been with the company for 27 years, said R.M.Williams was more than just a brand, it’s family.

“Four generations of my family are represented in this iconic brand, my gran and papa worked alongside my mother who was a whip platter and my aunts who were skilled belt platters,” she said.

“My four sons also had stints working in the workshop during and after high school, it’s in our blood.

“What R.M.Williams means to me is striving for excellence, always finding ways to do things better and more sustainably.

“They are the lessons that I carry from the workshop into other aspects of my life.”

IMG_0344-2500pxAllyson Edwards is the third of four generations of R.M.Williams employees. She is pictured here holding a photo of her grandfather and R.M.Williams. Photo Credit: Emma Brasier.

Set across a spacious 227m2, the store offers dedicated spaces for each of the brand’s product categories alongside design details that nod to its impressive legacy of Australian craftsmanship.

The pinnacle of the store is a central, curved boot wall – inspired by the heel of a boot – that presents the brand’s signature offering of handcrafted leather boots.

The space is complete with bespoke seating that forms a relaxed environment where customers can be expertly measured and fitted for a pair of RMs.

Elsewhere, ambient lighting, an earthy colour palette and homely, wardrobe-style fixtures contribute to a relaxed feeling of ease. Custom-made display units provide a thoughtful home for the brand’s diverse product offering, including showcase shelving and leather-lined drawers.

Craftsmanship in every corner

Every aspect of the store’s build and outfit has been considered through the lens of quality craftsmanship, in line with the brand’s commitment to local manufacturing. The impact of the brand’s arrival will be felt from first sight of the store entrance, with a spectacular 8-metre-wide digital screen showcasing a signature series of landscape video content, created by local videographer Isaac Forman. Once inside the store, visitors will be welcomed by locally produced furniture and joinery, premium wool carpeting from New Zealand and textural wall detailing featuring bricks by Krause, long-serving family operated brickmakers hailing from Victoria.

Furniture has been supplied by conscious Melbourne-based business Made By Morgen, a brand closely aligned with R.M.Williams’ enduring values of sustainability and timeless design. These contributions to the space include pieces crafted from Hydrowood, an extremely sustainable timber material dredged from a drowned forest in Tasmania. The story of this material, rediscovered after 25 years in the depths of Pieman Lake on Tasmania’s west coast, is further confirmation of R.M.Williams’ belief in the power of Australian ingenuity and craftsmanship.

RMWilliams230817-136Press-3000pxPhoto Credit: Emma Brasier.