There is this sunny little shop right down at the end of Balmain in Sydney very close to where you catch the ferry across the harbour. The place shows its age with pitted old bricks, worn away tiles and wonky flag stones. There are secret corners and mysterious hidey-holes and stairways going nowhere. Many years ago it was a bakery and the big black cast iron ovens that were made in Marrickville, are still there set into the brick walls out the back.
They call this place The Bakery Rooms and it’s the new Cloth retail outlet.
The Bakery Rooms is a collaboration between Martine Kilo, her sister Simone, her Mum (AKA Handy Pat) and Kate Connors.
It is is a retail space, workshop and interior consultancy all under one big old roof where every one works together and separately, depending on the project.
Martine and Kate have been long time employees of Cloth and both have had their own businesses running outside of Cloth for a few years now. Martine is part of a family business called Home Industry. They restore furniture and run upholstery workshops and Kate has an interior design consultancy, Kate Connors Interiors. Martine was, and still is, the Cloth production manager and Kate was in charge of Cloth retail and still is the Cloth Interiors contact.
Collectively they have 15 years experience working with me and the Cloth product. And I can quite confidently say that these two know a thing or two about Cloth and how to use it.
When I had my big idea about changing the way I ran my business, Martine and Kate took the opportunity to focus on their own businesses. They knew that they enjoyed working together, so it made a lot of sense to share a space and collaborate.
The building is perfectly set up for all of them to do their own thing. Room for restoring furniture out the back, a separate workroom to sew and make, a space for interior consultation and most importantly a lovely sunny retail shop out the front stocking Cloth products and fabric alongside many beautifully curated vintage pieces for the home.
The Bakery Rooms, incorporating Home Industry and Kate Connors Interiors opens its doors this week, with Thursday 17th July being the first official day of trading.
Well done girls, I love what you’ve done.
The Bakery Rooms, 62 Darling Street, East Balmain
Opening hours are Tues to Fri 10 – 5pm and Saturdays 9 – 2pm
See you there