Inspired by her creative parents, Ruby Barnett followed her passion for jewellery and crochet and started her own business, selling handmade, vintage and new products, as well as holding workshops for those keen to explore their creative side. Here she talks about her journey and where she sees Frith St heading in the future.
The passion: What inspired you to set up your business?
I grew up in a creative household, the daughter of an Architect and Seamstress/Fine Embroiderer. That exposure to creativity, particularly in such varied mediums was a catalyst for finding my own passion in jewellery and crochet. As they both ran their own small businesses, I think it was a natural progression for me as well. It is certainly a lot of work, but incredibly rewarding!
The launch: How did you start out in the beginning?
I was given a unique opportunity to be a part of a co-operative of sole traders, in the Lonsdale St Traders in Canberra. We were given a blank canvas, very affordable rent and a great mix of people. It was a wonderfully supportive and eye-opening beginning to business. The space enabled me to design and create in store, while also stocking beautiful vintage, handmade and new items from Lazybones, Bella Bathers, Each To Own and Delilah Devine. I started small, with low overheads and made sure that I could grow the business steadily.
The innovation: What was the biggest breakthrough for you with your business?
Honestly – having children! I have three gorgeous children under five and while that coincided with the end of the pop-up location, it forced me to reinvent the business and make it still work with the changed circumstances. So, I looked at online options, markets, pop-up opportunities, which has all lead to me being part of a wonderful new volunteer run co-operative, Scullin Traders, and also a government-led initiative to revitalise an old, tired local town square. Both of these places have given me the opportunity to hold workshops and that has been so incredibly rewarding. I love teaching people the foundations of jewellery and crochet and watching their imaginations run wild in their beautiful designs.