Don’t you just love discovering a gem in your own neck of the woods?
Living in Surry Hills, Sydney in Australia I have to say, I’m spoiled for choice, but when I ambled by Canadian brand Kit and Ace in my “hood”, it was like striking gold!
Nestled between iconic Bourke Street bakery and the avant-garde Ray Hughes Gallery on Devonshire Street, Kit and Ace is an oasis of minimalist chic.
If you haven’t already heard of the Vancouver label, you will need it on your fashion radar.
If luxury at a very affordable price point and a “less is more” aesthetic is your fashion mantra, then you’ll be in paradise.
Created in 2014 by former lead designer of Lulu Lemon Shannon Wilson and stepson JJ Wilson, Kit and Ace is a very clever concept. A machine washable fabric engineered from cashmere and technical fibres with added stretch.
The cashmere is sourced from goats living in both Mongolia and Inner Mongolia, China.
It is harvested in the traditional way by combing with a wide-tooth wire comb to extract only the cashmere hair from the animals.
It is then blended with other fibres including cotton, elastane and nylon.
These are the technical elements, so to speak, the parts that make this blend so effortlessly easy to care for.
Who doesn’t love cashmere? But, who has time to hand wash these days?
I know I don’t, if I can chuck it into the machine on wool or delicates my day is made.
The innovation of a machine washable blend with all the feel of a fluffy cloud is hard to resist, and why should I hold back?
I met with the delightful Kerrin who talked me through the range of mens and women wear, and the ideology behind this innovative product.
I have to say I’m a bit of a sucker when it comes to cashmere and personally have a very tactile approach when shopping. If it doesn’t feel good, no matter how much I like the design, I have been known to walk away.
Well, these pieces have me running back for more!
The thing is, basics are an integral part of any persons wardrobe.
You know those pieces, the ones that get you out of strife when you are having a fashion crisis.
The ones that you always pack for a well earned holiday.
The ones, whose quality will mean they will last more than one season; and the ones whose colour palette fit with every other piece you own.
Kit and Ace has all this and more.
First of all, the store is divine.
Thoughtful touches are everywhere. From the moment you walk through the doors, it’s a warm friendly greeting.
Beautifully laid out, it has great flow and natural light which allows the pieces to be experienced as they would in real life.
The staff know their product. This gets a huge tick from me.
Nothing is better than having great interaction with a sales team.
I also love the ethos behind this brand.
They adopt a community approach to their stores, rather than a “us and them” competitive streak and I find this very refreshing, especially these days when retail can seem so cut-throat.
I really could have snapped up one of everything in here.
I know where I’ll be coming for a little Christmas shopping!
So if you find yourself either in Sydney’s Surry Hills or Bondi Junction, pop in to Kit and Ace.
If you are in Melbourne try the Greville Street store, or north of the border visit Brisbane’s shopping hub James Street for your fashion fix.
Otherwise jump Online for a little home shopping.
Trust me when I say, man or woman you’ll find it hard to walk out empty handed.
Jo Bayley, Fashion Editor, The Culture Concept Circle, 2015