Elms is a lifestyle store and gallery space on Crown Street that celebrates Australian designers and artists.
I stopped in and spoke to owner Rebecca about her move into the neighbourhood, the rise of Instagram in retail, and the importance of stocking only Australian brands.
“Our stock is a collection of things I love, things that I have in my own home,” said Rebecca.
Elms is spread across two levels: the ground level displays rows of candles, body products, accessories and racks of carefully curated Australian fashion labels. The second floor features home wares, bedding and ornate vases displaying a collection of Australian natives. Across one wall hang prints from Australian artists David Bromley and Bonnie Gray, part of Rebecca’s regular rotation of artworks.
“My background is in interior design – I think what I love most is the ability to take something that is decrepit and old and renew it rather than just knocking it down.”
While Rebecca sources much of her stock from trade fairs and private showings, she admits that Instagram is fast becoming the most effective means of sourcing, buying and connecting with designers and makers.
“We actually just launched buying on Instagram a few weeks ago. It’s been huge in getting the word out to so many people,” she said.
“I think what’s really special about Australian products at the moment is the shift towards using natural, organic and vegan ingredients, Australian botanicals and their properties. The makers are all really passionate about their products.”
It’s important to fill your home with things that you love, rather than just “stuff,” says Rebecca. Her locally minded, simple approach to Elms Store is something we might all apply to our own spaces.
Elms Store – 393 Crown Street, Surry Hills
Rebecca’s go-to products:
Raconteur candles, made in Bondi. Rebecca recommends the scent of native grass, cedar, lavender and moss.
Salus Eucalyptus and Rosemary body scrub.
This story originally appeared in Urban Village, Autumn 2019 edition