There are some key words that are foundational in my business. Local is one of them. A major portion of products at handmadeandmarina depends on raw materials from local sources and outlets. As I have often reiterated in the past, no local resources, no handmadeandmarina! So it follows that my handmade soaps are olive oil based as that is the wonderful oil that I can access from growers and producers in my vicinity. Alternatively, when I am on holidays visiting my parents who grow and extract coconut oil in their property, I am able to make ample amounts of deliciously pure coconut oil soap.Diverse is another way to describe my local business. This is something you notice whether you visit my market stall or online store. From skincare products to chilli condiments and a lot in between, each item has some significance for me and my small business. With great relish I am able to present the four types of chilli condiments tried and tasted for years in our chilli loving household. Chillis are gathered from our garden as well as from two grower friends who love the beauty of the world’s hottest chillies without having the need to consume them!

Rustic and natural with a practical country aesthetic is how I see many of my products. That somewhat explains my penchant for pinafore aprons from up cycled linen garments, the eri silks which look so linen-like, plant dyes and prints on recycled and new garments. I’m currently on a journey to have a live indigo vat with woad and Japanese indigo from the garden.

Tradition is something I gravitate to and has influenced my desire to keep alive back-strap weaving as well as dyeing with the aforementioned indigo- one of the main colours of the Lotha Naga tribe. My two spinning wheels and bags of beautiful local merino and alpaca wool (currently sitting neglected) are testimony to this journey of mine.

In these troubled times, slow crafting will mean all the more to my business than ever before. Markets being cancelled because of the current pandemic crisis means loss of income but more time to spin, weave, dye, make, garden…

On that note, you might have noticed I am offering free delivery for places around Bunbury as well as free Australia – wide postage for customers whose orders are $50 or more. It may be a small offering but hopefully will contribute in a positive way.