Environmental activists who try to save the planet through “finger wagging” at the public are doomed to failure, according to a Countryfile. The Countryfile presenter Anita Rani has accused TV executives of giving “posh white men” a free pass to make documentaries about trains in.
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Their list of wishes went something like this: A lovely house that is also practical with an opportunity for Liz to work from home i. Located near a kindergarten and school for their little boy William; 4. Not too far from a bank and some basic shopping; 5. A picturesque place in the country that is also on the fringe of convenience. Liz tells me she was sold the moment she laid eyes on the charming white weatherboard house replete with verandah and white picket fence!
But, lo-and-behold, she was sold twice-over when she discovered the house also came with historic outbuildings, a large back yard with an orchard and majestic trees and a general merchant store!
And WOW! A long and winding road! I think our family has moved house 6 times in 10 years, so definitely time to settle down for a while and let our little boy grow. Tell us all about it! Some people buy a house, we bought a house that just happened to have a shop in the back yard.
The Red Store has operated in Newstead in one form or another for over years. Originally a general store selling groceries, drapery, crockery and all manner of household items with a stockfeeds business and ironmongery in the side yard, the business was owned by Isaac Roberts and his decendants in Newstead for many many years.
Although the current building dates from the turn of the century, I understand there was an earlier, more basic shed situated on the corner of the block selling wares during the gold rush. In the end, we were lucky to be able to re-establish The Red Store and hang out our shingle under the historic name. What makes you so passionate about old wares?
I could go on about how vintage and antique items are made to last and ecologically sound having already had their carbon footprint ammortised over several life times, but to be honest, beautiful and more often than not, rustic….. On any given day we can be: You also own an historic homestead that just happens to be right next door. Tell us about it! The white picket fence along the veranda did it for me … one click and I was gone! No queues, no car parking hassles, drink driving is a thing of the past — the pub is on the other corner!
Best of all, we are lucky to have become a fixture in the town community and living right at its heart has helped with that.
Well-constructed, solid furniture that is built to last longer than a few years is very expensive to purchase new these days and even then quite a lot of it is lacking in any form of real character. Each piece I create is an original and not every piece appeals to everyone. I think thats what makes it so interesting for people, they get to purchase something that really resonates with them.
You have a keen eye for seeing the potential in furniture others might discard. Can you give us a little insight into your creative processes? I just store everything and then pick a piece and start sanding. Where or who or what do you draw your inspiration from?
Recreating furniture for myself and for the public are two totally different things! The initial concept of R. Kyneton was only intended to be the odd piece here and there, I had no idea if any pieces would even sell. However, the overwhelming positive feedback has definitely given me the inspiration to push forward. Do you intend to have a RIVE bricks and mortar store? Or is online the way of the future? I think online is definitely the way of the future, even a lot or bricks and mortar stores have an online presence these days.
However, being limited to online really does mean that a lot of people who are not computer savvy do not get to appreciate your work, you do not get to interact with your clientele face to face nor does it allow people to really get a feel for your work by being able to see and touch the pieces.
So, for the time being, a store is a distant possibility. I like to run and try to keep fit. Copious amounts of coffee follow! When we are both at home, evenings are spent curled up on the couch with Adam and our two dogs Roxy and Tess. You relocated a Califonian Bungalow from Northcote to Kyneton. Tell us the story and how that came about? Adam and I both wanted an older style house on some land that we could renovate but everything was over our budget.
I was beginning to get a little stressed because we had sold my house and settlement was looming and we had nowhere to go! Just a few hours later, on the same day, an Agent rang to say that a 20 acre block had become available for sale.
We looked at the block that day and decided to buy it. I rang up about about the Californian Bungalow expecting it to be gone, but it was still available! Lots of paperwork and council permits later we moved into the shed that was already on the block of land, the house arrived and we spent every spare minute of the next 4 years working our butts off!
Do you love country life? I spent my childhood living in country towns, camping out and travelling around with my family. Once I finished high school the bright lights of the city drew me in and I spent almost 10 years living and working in Melbourne. I love the fresh air, space and sense of community that only a country town can provide.
What aspect of country life are you loving MOST at the moment? Do you prefer Coffee or Tea? I drink both but I prefer coffee, which is strange because I used to hate coffee! I have a love-hate relationship with the place; I love it so much I always eat too much! Where would we find you on a typical Saturday morning? Up early with a hat on to hide my bed hair and with a travel mug of coffee in hand, rummaging for treasures with Adam at local garage sales!
What are you waiting for?! I have just released a new range for RIVE. However, I found that trying to work to that price range restricted what I could do. With my new range, I seek out specific pieces of furniture and take more time to source select materials to incorporate into the final designs.