A MYER project is undertaken by the visual merchandising students each semester. We have worked with MYER Southland, MYER Doncaster and MYER Melbourne CBD and each store manager has been incredibly impressed with the calibre of the designs and the enthusiasm of our students.

MYER's Bourke Street Mall store (in Melbourne's city centre) was relaunched in late March 2011. Kangan Institute's visual merchandising students were invited to design and create some of the displays for the event.

Visual merchandising trainer Kate Carroll said MYER management has been consistently delighted with our students' work.

"MYER has been extremely impressed with the creativity and professionalism of the students and this has further solidified our relationship which we've worked very hard to build over the last several years," she said.

For the MYER Bourke St re-launch, Wayne Latham himself (general manager of MYER 's brand) said: "We were overwhelmed with the quality of the work the visual merchandising students responded with when briefed to create displays. The results were visually dynamic and the quality of the execution is of an industry standard."

Projects such as this ensure our students are exposed to real-world working environments and become confident and work-ready upon completion of the Diploma of Visual Merchandising.

Other projects include:

Heavenly Charity dinner

This project involved a site visit (in order to understand the space and atmosphere of which the display would be related to), along with meeting the client and event staff to discuss the logistics of the event. As a result the students responded to the brief, created props and elaborate dresses for the specifics of the display followed by the actual installation of the display.

Toorak Village project

Our students were invited to create the Christmas concepts for the Toorak Village stores. Students were briefed by the individual retailers to tailor each display to the needs, look and budget of each client. This was another successful project that received positive feedback from both the store managers and the students.

The Retail Lab Cake Shop project

An internal project undertaken by second stage students where cakes were created to look real but were in fact made from ingredients such as expanding filler and polystyrene. The students created macaroons, cupcakes, cream filled sponges and lamingtons to fill the store and to support the overall look created by wall papered panels and window decals.

Leela Egan-Halls

Dimmeys window display project.

A team of students in June 2011 confidently drew upon their knowledge learned during the course and designed a plan and outline of the desired outcome of the display in accordance with Dimmeys' brief. This was a great opportunity to diversify knowledge and experience in a real-world environment beyond high-end department or fashion stores. Dimmeys were very supportive of the students and allowed creative freedom throughout the process.

Studio major window project

This is a final stage assessment task where students are given a brief to create a large window display for a specific target market incorporating props, mannequins, products and branding. This provides the opportunity for students to learn how to rollout an installation from start to finish; experiencing the key aspects of time management, sourcing materials, creating props and implementing a concept to a deadline which engages the consumer. Students undergo this task in line with their chosen career path (e.g. fashion, home wares etc.) for use in a folio for future employment purposes.

Sovereign Hill's 'Christmas in July' window project

Twelve Kangan Institute students were provided with a brief to transform the windows at Sovereign Hill according to a Christmas in July school holidays promotional theme. This was the first time Kangan Institute students have been involved in a project at Sovereign Hill.

They were asked to create an exciting concept which would involve sourcing materials, creating decorations as well as the final installation. Participating students gave three days of their semester break to be part of the project and took two full days to dress the windows, interiors and the main street.

This project received positive feedback from the Sovereign Hill Museums Association. Following the promotions, the Association's director of commercial operations Richard Berman-Hardman said, "Just a quick note to thank and congratulate you for the role Kangan staff and students played in delivering our Christmas in July school holidays promotion.

The site looked amazing - staff commented that they had never seen visitors taking so many photographs - and I'm pleased to report that we received 8,000 more visitors than targeted over the two-weeks. Big success."

  • Kangan Institute visual merchandising students put together a sustainable installation for cylk's flagship store on Chapel Street.
  • Visual merchandising students go green for cylk store installation
  • Kangan Institute's visual merchandising students have collaborated with cylk's creative team to produce a sustainable installation for their Chapel Street store's Spring Summer 2012 collection.

As part of the design brief, students were asked to think outside the commercial realms of visual merchandising with a focus on sustainability and a prevalence of recycled materials whilst also complimenting the Spring Summer collection.

cylk selected an installation designed by student Josie Reys, with birdhouses made from recycled timber and screens made with oversized bamboo and papier-mâché eggs and nests.

All of the timber used for the birdhouse displays and shelving units were sourced from a waste transfer centre and made from recycled weatherboards. The other materials used throughout the store include papier-mâché eggs, twigs sourced from the garden for the bird perches and recycled paper twine used to hang the birdhouses in the window.

Projects are in a constant state of evolution. With each year that passes, we expand the number and depth of our endeavours. Our aim is to ensure our students get the very best hands-on training and real-world experience, in addition to the class-based lessons learned throughout the course.

Industry figures are rapidly becoming aware that our Diploma of Visual Merchandising students have the knowledge, skills and enthusiasm that far exceed their counterparts.

  • On 10th Spetember 2012, our Diploma of Visual Merchandising students once again shook up Melbourne's retail scene with a funky transformation of MYER Doncaster's display windows. Click here for the full photo album.