US department store retailer Kmart is opening up its design centre via social media and its own dedicated website to show what goes on behind the scenes in the creation of its apparel and home furnishings lines.

With a team of more than 200 designers at its studios in SoHo (New York) and Chicago, the retailer hopes to show how its team approaches the design process.

There are unscripted documentaries, profiles and image galleries created by the designers themselves, fashion tips and trend information.

"I think we started with a tweet," said Lisa Schultz, executive vice president of apparel design at Sears Holdings.

"It just said, 'Kmart Design? You might be pleasantly surprised' and linked to the documentaries. It was exciting."

Instead of buying off the rack, Kmart home fashions and apparel are designed with its customer in mind, with details that include fully-lined jackets, modesty panels on sheer blouses and skirts and faux leather that has the hand of real leather.

The inside story of Kmart Design is being told at www.KmartDesign.com, and at www.Twitter.com/kmartdesign.