• Insights into achieving business success in China

    We’re looking forward to joining the NSW Government and the Export Council of Australia for the launch of the 2019 Premier’s NSW Export Awards which recognise business excellence in the field of international trade.

    Our Global Creative Director, Camille Corlette, will be speaking on her insights into achieving business success in China.

    Event speakers:

    • Peter Mackey, Director International Trade, NSW Department of Industry | NSW Industry, Trade & Investment
    • Heath Baker, Acting CEO, Export Council of Australia
    • Madam Wang Hongbo, Economic and Commercial Counsellor, The Consulate General of China in Sydney
    • Camille Corlette, Global Creative Director, Corlette – 2018 NSW Exporter to Asia Winner
    • Anna Lin, Manager, Client Group, Australian Trade and Investment Commission
  • Can wayfinding principles improve building design?

    By Henri Mariasson, Global Director of Projects.

    We have all been there, running late for an appointment, desperately trying to find the right entrance, the right lift, the right corridor, the right door. It is in these moments that we understand what it means to have a good signage and wayfinding program. Wayfinding’s first principle is to direct people through a space to their correct destination, this is typically done using signage to provide those directions. However, a wayfinding program is always responding to the built environment in which it sits. Which means when you get lost in a building, it might not be just because of a poor wayfinding program, it may be because the layout of a space is not conducive to directing guests.

    In our experience, there are some buildings where minimal signage is required because guests are almost ushered by the building design to their correct destination. This could be done through sight, sounds, or even smells.  A restaurant in a hotel can be easy to find because the senses are the first thing to be greeted, such as the sound of other guests inside the venue, or the beautiful aromas emanating from the kitchen. In an office, having the reception desk greet you as soon as you walk in, saves you having to search around for where you need to go. The less time a person needs to navigate through a space will give them one less thing to worry about.

    Much of the time, physical space limits where venues or facilities can be located on a property, which then prevents an easy navigation of the space. However, even in these situations there are some methods that can improve a guest’s navigation, such as having easily visible entrances to venues or facilities. In malls, some lifts are hidden behind the retail space, often making it difficult for shoppers to locate them. Lifts in the centre of a mall, or located near atriums, not only help shoppers find the lifts but they also serve as a landmark when trying to move around the mall. Another design feature that poses a navigational challenge to hotel guests is the sky lobby. The sky lobby is a fantastic architectural detail, it provides amazing vistas of the city and creates the sought-after Wow factor. However, it is typically located on the highest floor, above the ground floor, and above guestroom floors. When guests need to find the lobby from their room, they must remember to go up to the lobby. This is counter-intuitive to most people as hotels generally have the lobby on the ground floor.

    Navigating through a space has a tremendous impact on a person’s experience and wellbeing. Supporting this are a number of papers studying the positive effect Wayfinding Principles have on Architectural design to save time, reduce errors and lower anxiety. A great deal of research concludes that reducing the complexity of the spatial layout and integrating signage into the visual environment will improve a person’s perception of a place. At Corlette the success of our wayfinding and experiential branding is based on our collaborative and integrated approach with all disciplines on a project. The earlier we can start on a project, the earlier we can provide wayfinding advice on the layout of a space. With 40 years’ experience, we are able to improve a person’s experience of place simply by applying wayfinding principles earlier in the architectural or urban design process.

    Ultimately, the layout of a space has a large bearing on how well people, guests, or visitors are able to navigate themselves. To help find the way, please get in contact with Corlette and we will help with the rest.

    If you’re interested in more information on building for better navigation, below are some interesting reads on the topic;

    B. Abrams, Wayfinding in Architecture, University of South Florida, 16 April 2010

    E.J Short, S. Reay & P. Gilderdale, Wayfinding for health seeking: Exploring how hospital wayfinding can employ communication design to improve the outpatient experience, Taylor & Francis. Group, 06 Sep 2017.

    (Note. Paywall:) M. J. O’Neill, Effects of Signage and Floor Plan Configuration on Wayfinding Accuracy, First Published September 1, 1991.

    Image: the Author, Henri Mariasson, wayfinding onsite. 

  • Experiential Senior Designer & Project Co-ordinator

    Looking for your next career challenge as part of an award-winning, international team?

    Corlette is a global leader in experiential branding and wayfinding, with established offices in Sydney, Shanghai, London, and Singapore. Specialists in hotels and resorts, retail, residential, food & beverage, mixed-use developments, events, and urban planning our crafted brand experiences transform ideas, enrich environments and seduce audiences.

    We’re now seeking a talented Senior Designer and Project Co-ordinator to join our Sydney studio, to work as part of our focussed, international team.

    Celebrating 40 years of luxury, hospitality and lifestyle design.


    SENIOR DESIGNER This position is now closed. Thank you.

    This position requires a strategic designer, able to lead wayfinding and signage programs from conception, through to manufacture and installation. With a depth of experience and industry knowledge, you will be designing across a full spectrum of projects from high end luxury through to avant-garde, cutting edge briefs.

    You bring to the role 8-10 years’ experience in graphic design, with an emphasis on branded environments, and you hold a diploma/degree in Graphic Design or Visual Communication. Experience in hospitality and food and beverage is required. You have an understanding of materials and mechanical artwork, Advanced Adobe Creative Suite and CAD Skills. You are equally comfortable presenting to executive level clients as to leading creative consultants from other disciplines.

    This role may require international travel from time to time.

    If this is you, please send your cv and portfolio to camille@corlettedesign.com


    PROJECT CO-ORDINATOR This position is now closed. Thank you.

    Your role is to provide project support to our senior project managers and design team. With a particular emphasis on co-ordinating and preparing wayfinding plans, you have knowledge of the interior/industrial design process and experience with construction (ideally in the hospitality industry). This role would suit someone with 1-2 years professional experience, and a background in industrial design, architecture, or interiors.

    You will be co-ordinating wayfinding and administration on complex international projects, and supporting our international team on; studio scheduling, managing deadlines, liaising with clients, and financial administration. You have Advanced MS Office, Advanced AutoCAD, and Intermediate Adobe Creative Suite skills.

    This role has great potential to learn and grow in a supportive, creative team environment.

    If this is you, please send your cv and portfolio to clare@corlettedesign.com

  • Women in leadership #Balanceforbetter

    Inspiring future female leaders

    By Rebecca Kirby, Designer at Corlette.

    As an ambitious woman trying to make my way in the world and progress in my career, I know I’m not alone in finding this task quite overwhelming. But why do many young women lack the confidence to push themselves to their full potential?

    Perhaps it’s an inability to imagine themselves in top leadership positions? Historically, the stereotype for business leaders has been male. This stereotype has become so deeply ingrained that when we see the many inspirational female business leaders that we have, it seems that much more impressive because of their gender. In Australia today, a woman runs only 11 of the ASX 200. Forty of those companies don’t have a single woman on their executive leadership team. Shockingly, there are more CEOs named Andrew amongst the top companies than there are women. Between the double standards of an assertive female leader being perceived negatively (as shown in the Heidi vs. Howard study*), the well-publicized debate on the gender pay gap, and the difficult decision to put your hard-earned career on hold to start a family, it’s not surprising that we might see it as an unrealistic goal to make it to the top.

    However, Corlette has been breaking that mold now for forty years. Although the company has a strong gender balance in its male to female staff ratio, women hold the top leadership positions. For a young female designer, I believe that being exposed to more women in leadership will help us to get past the confidence barrier many of us may struggle with.

    Erin Corlette started the business in 1979 by taking advantage of the opportunities available to her. “I was freelancing after my second child was born, and was asked by my major client if I would set up a Design Studio, to work closely with them. I had never thought seriously about establishing my own business, but I was certainly excited about it, as well as challenged.” 

    It was significantly more unusual in the late 1970s for a woman starting her own design business, but Erin “didn’t think too much about it”. With a well-recognised client base that trusted and respected her, it was the perfect opportunity to utilise what she had learnt from a supportive and encouraging manager. “My first job was with a Director who felt that as a designer you could, and should be able to design anything. This stayed with me always. If you love what you do, work hard, always look for the opportunities to do better and encourage others to do the same.”

    Camille Corlette, Global Creative Director at Corlette, and Erin’s daughter, has always had an inspiring female role model in Erin. Having a mother in a successful leadership position meant that she was exposed to advice, encouragement and expertise from a young age. One piece of advice Erin gave, which I strongly support, coming from the UK to work in Australia, is to travel and work overseas to broaden your inspirations and experiences. “When I first started at Corlette, both Erin and I had planned that I couldn’t stay there; I had to go and explore to know that a) I wanted to be in it, and b) to gain international experience. So that’s when I went to London, followed by Los Angeles and New York.” Engaging with new people, with different ideas and ways of working, influences and inspires you in ways that may not be possible if you haven’t taken the opportunity to travel. “After working in London, I came back and worked for an advertising agency that was very design-led. I worked incredibly hard, and gained their respect by showing creativity, commitment and strong leadership skills. I relocated and opened their LA office which was an amazing experience. I later moved to New York for several years with a large agency before returning to Corlette.”

    This ideology of travel and working within different cultures remains a strong part of the company today, with offices in Shanghai, Singapore, and London, as well as Sydney. Head of Signage Design, Natasha Bartoshefski, is “really inspired by the places in which we work, different cultures, and also some amazing architects and consultants.” Exposure to different people and places can have a profound effect on the way you develop as a designer and ultimately move up in your career. Natasha believes that having an inspiring mentor and learning as much as you can from them is an important aspect of development. “I spent a long time just being a ‘sponge’ at presentations and seeing how my mentors would conduct themselves in meetings and in creative discussions. My advice to a young designer would be firstly to engage as much as you can in the world around you, notice what others are doing, be inspired, ask questions, look at how things are made. Be aware of who you think is doing great things and do what you can to work alongside them, enthusiasm will get you a long way.”

    With exposure to different cultures and working environments, women trying to engage in a leadership position will undoubtedly come across more negative attitudes and gender bias, but Natasha sees a positive aspect to this. “Occasionally when you go to give a presentation in another country and the board room is completely full of men in suits, who don’t know anything about your background or experience, they may make a judgement about you based on a quick assumption of the way you look. However, I think this can still be a benefit – it’s nice to pleasantly surprise a client and reassure them you know what you are doing within the first 5 or 10 minutes of a presentation.”



    In my experience, graphic design is definitely one of the more gender-balanced sectors amongst the design industry, compared to professions such as architecture. However, when I was a student in 2010, the UK’s Design Council published findings that 70% of design students were female, but only 40% of design professionals were women, and even less in high profile positions.

    Kirsty Newell, Head of Graphic Design at Corlette, believes that some attributes traditionally assigned to women are greatly beneficial to the design process, regardless of gender. “Effective design is about connecting with your audience. Innate female sensibilities can give an edge in articulating an emotional response. In a design studio environment where tight deadlines and fragile creative egos are all in the balance, being empathetic is a huge asset, particularly in a leadership position.”

    Women and men in leadership are far more alike than they are different. The traits and skill set required to reach a managerial position are the same whatever gender you are. However, unconscious bias is entrenched in us and forms a roadblock for many young women, from those around them and from themselves. Clare Bailey, CEO at Corlette, would like to see more women at all levels looking out for each other to help support women in their careers. “Lack of inclusion holds women back and, together, we can change that. I have learned to recognise the power of other women supporting, and empathising, with each other. Women I have worked with, clients, colleagues, and collaborators, who have supported me, mentored me, or taken the time to give me a lift, they really make all the difference.”

    As well as having a strong support network in your career, it is important to play to your strengths. Clare, who began her career as a junior designer, realised early on that exploring other areas of the industry could help fulfil her full potential. “I recognised a few things early on, as a junior designer. I would never be as technically proficient at design software as I needed to be. And I can’t sit at a computer all day, I need to be out talking with people, with clients. Of course, good designers do that too, but not a lot of junior designers get to. So, I moved into project management and strategy and realised this suited me much more. Working with smart clients and helping to realise a vision is very rewarding”. 

    Sharing the stories and relatable paths of successful women in business and leadership roles, in whatever industry, should be a more common occurrence. Support each other through experiences that are a lot newer to us than our male counterparts, who have been born into a world where leadership roles have been expected of them for many years. Women need to have confidence, to do what they have a passion for. You need to be focussed, work hard and have plenty of drive and energy to do what it is you are excited about doing. It’s the old saying of ‘If you can do it, so can I.’” – Erin Corlette


    Celebrating International Women’s Day 2019

    Pictured: Seated: Natasha Bartoshefski, Head of Signage Design and Erin Corlette, Executive Creative Director. Rear L-R: Kirsty Newell, Head of Graphic Design, Rebecca Kirby, Designer, Camille Corlette, Global Creative Director, and Clare Bailey, Chief Executive Officer.

    * Women & the Leadership Labyrinth – Howard vs Heidi


    Global leaders in experiential branding and wayfinding.
    40 years of luxury, hospitality and lifestyle design.
    Welcome to Corlette, where great design ignites the senses. 

  • Natasha’s Theatre Picks

    At our regular Chatty Cathy Fridays #teamCorlette get together for a few drinks and one of us presents an inspiring topic.
    This month Natasha Bartoshefski, Head of Design, shares her top Sydney theatre picks for 2019. Brilliant Christmas present inspiration and nine great reasons to get to the theatre in the New Year.




    This is the return season for In the Heights, the original Hayes production was fantastic. Written by Lin-Manuel Miranda (of Hamilton and Moana fame), it has a modern West Side Story feel to it, with rap and latin influences. The pace of the dialogue and the lyrics make it a challenge for the performers but when it works, it works! A cool twist on the musical genre and a deserved winner of 4 Tony Awards when it debuted on Broadway. Tickets are nearly sold out as the season is a short one. TICKETS  

    Image ©: Joan Marcus of the broadway cast via Playbill



    Performing at the Enmore in January, Sasha Velour tiptoes between drag and performance art. Winner of RuPaul’s Drag Race in 2017, her shows typically integrate elements of digital projection to interact with her high fashion costumes and music. Can’t wait to see what weird and wonderful creations she has cooked up for her one-woman show in this intimate theatre. TICKETS

    Image ©: Mike Katziv / NPR



    A brand new Australian work based on the life and artwork of artist Brett Whiteley, which promises to bring to life some of his most famous images within the spectacular Joan Sutherland Theatre. “He abhorred straight lines, adored drugs, alcohol, women. He worked in vivid colour and ravishing curves” – sounds just like the perfect subject for an opera! TICKETS

    Image ©: Opera Australia



    A great one to take your parents to (or gift them tickets), especially if they lived through the disco era! Expect some slick hair, tight pants, retro dance moves and a feel-good buzz when you leave. Highly recommend to run out at intermission to grab a scoop of Gelato Messina just outside the theatre doors or follow up with karaoke afterwards. TICKETS

    Image ©: Valentine Theatre, 2016



    This one is for those who want to get dressed up and experience the majesty of Sydney Opera House. Sydney Symphony Orchestra will play the full score to Casino Royale while you relax and enjoy the movie. Very smooth date night! TICKETS

    Image ©: Sydney Opera House/ MGM


    A sneaky one because it’s not playing in Sydney this year, only Melbourne and Brisbane, but this production of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland is not to be missed. A classic story but not a classical ballet, recommended for the costumes and sets alone. TICKETS

    Image ©: The Australian Ballet



    Going to see a Sydney Theatre Company production is always a bit of a wild card, even with a well-known show you never know what to expect, which is great. Rebel Wilson stars in this black comedy set in small Irish town, which promises to give you a giggle. Pre-theatre dining at the theatre (Walsh Bay Kitchen) is good value and convenient if you are going on a weeknight and short on time before the show. TICKETS

    Image ©: Sydney Theatre Company



    A good family pick. It’s been running on Broadway for the past few years really successfully and then in Melbourne through 2018 with great reviews. Fun and heartfelt with a talented young cast, it’s a good introduction to the theatre for those with school-aged children. It will be playing at the Capitol which is easy to access via public transport. TICKETS

    Image ©: School of Rock the Musical



    Based on the Oscar-award winning indie film of the same name, Once was developed into a Broadway musical which went on to win 8 Tony Awards. Lucky for us, Darlinghurst Theatre Company is giving us the chance to see why it is so special in their production in July. The cast are also the orchestra for this show, who perform on a minimalist set, allowing the music and story to transport the audience. Another plus, the tickets here tend to be more affordable than the big, commercial productions and the previews are even better value, so get along and support them! TICKETS

    Image ©: Once, Dublin 2017 production



  • Transform Asia-Pacific 2018

    We’re delighted to announce Corlette collected Gold and Silver at last night’s 2018 Transform Asia-Pacific Awards in Hong Kong. Awarded Best Wayfinding and Signage Gold, for W Brisbane, and Silver, for The William Inglis and Riverside Stables, at Warwick Farm. This award honours branded signage and wayfinding systems that have been strategically developed to be effective and reflective of a brand’s values and overall visual identity.

    Gold for W Brisbane had the judges noting “The visual system is highly organised. The petal motifs, angular and serif typographies are well choreographed to give a sense of fun, encouraging the eye to explore at every turn.”

    Commenting on the creative delivered for William Inglis & Son, one judge proclaimed, “The team has created a modern classic and it is a delight to look upon this heritage brand’s new clothes.”

    Camille Corlette, Global Creative Director noted, “Coming off the back of our recent win earlier this month of the NSW Asian Exporter award, at the Premier’s New South Wales Export Awards 2018, we couldn’t be more proud of the Corlette team and their well-deserved recognition, giving us extra cause to celebrate as we close out 2018. Warm thanks go to our fantastic clients, Shayher Group and William Inglis & Son.

    ”We have grown significantly this year, expanding our Sydney and Shanghai teams to Singapore and London. The response has been overwhelming and there are great things ahead for our incredibly passionate and talented global team.”

    Click to read more on Transform Awards Asia-Pacific 2018.

    Camille Corlette, Global Creative Director,  pictured with Chris Loeffen, Business Development Director SE Asia.
    #teamcorlette #ignitethesenses #buildingbrands #embracingculture