Jess Blak is Open for Business in Winn Lane
As this was such a big spacial overhall I wanted to share some progress photos starting from the build to the final event. Some help came to me in painting and bouncing plans off people with more expertise than myself. However I am very proud of my basic carpentry and design skills.
This space was a fun challenge to navigate as it was small but tall, so emphasis on extending upwards was at the forefront of my designing.
December 24th- Initial install of the studio equipment, and display cabinet, taped up the windows so nobody could see the transformation and started patching the walls… this was previously used at a gallery space so the walls really needed some love.
December 26-28th Continued patching and sanding of the walls. HUGE shout out to Tim who helped me paint and sand… what a bloody legend. Erected the first wall, painted the white walls and then stained the first of the wood walls. Was very excited to have some real construction on the way.
December 29th – installed and undercoated my flip bench, giving me entry to my studio, and did a general tidy up of the space, at this stage I was wondering if the space was going to come together.. the deep red staining was so loud in the small space… needed a break from it so went home to rest before heading away for a couple of days with friends to celebrate New Years.
Had few days away, relaxed a little and drank all the beer, Rocky was excited to see the cows and smell the poop. Ushered in 2019 away from the city and the impending work, surrounded by loved ones in the middle of the country. Burnt all the sparklers!
January 3rd-4th I was back in the shop, this time putting up the first lot of shelves, learnt how to use a circular saw, which was pretty awesome! Erected the last of the walls and installed the front cabinet door. I really wanted this stand alone front cabinet so I could utilise the space better- as an interchangeable display for the shop, more wall space and less sunlight penetrating the store.
January 6th, my sister gave birth to her second child so went to visit her in hospital.
Being an aunt is awesome, welcome to the world Rafferty!
Earlier that day, I was installing more shelves, sourced my mirror from the local antique centre, and doing test patches for the floor colour. Again, really freaking out at this stage, was worried about the green floor…
January 7th- This was a super exciting day! the floors came up great, the colour really envois the space with a sense of warmth which I was seeking. The white floors were really messing with the vibe.
January 8th- I started the day with my favourite dish, a big bowl of Pho! Strongly recommend AJ Vietnamese on Elizabeth Street, my absolute favourite! Today I cleaned a lot… dust everywhere still from all the sanding and cutting. Sewed and installed the sheer curtains to filter and soften the light, installed the photography and started putting Fallow stock on the shelves. I then went onto making my first window display. I thought a lot about my first display and decided a swing would be the right tone, I will write more on this in a later post as its very close to my heart.
So after a couple of weeks of refining the space and rubbing my scent on everything I had the launch night, I was very excited to share my new store with friends and industry peers. HUGE thank you to everybody who made it, I felt so much love and shared creative energy, we didn’t get enough photos on the night but I hope this appropriately portrays the energy.
I hope you have enjoyed this little progress journal!
I wanted to share this journey with you, not only for interest in the brand, but to demonstrate what can be done on a limited budget and a bit of DIY enthusiasm, my hands have had a real workout but its been a real adventure and its only just begun!
Huge thanks to Arthur who manages The Lanes, Nat from fallow for her collaborative support and trust, my dearest friend Aaron for his painting skills, my in-laws Terry and Denise who are the most generous people, I don’t know what I did to deserve you both. And my best friend and husband Kelby for your endless support, motivation and micromanaging.. and for putting up with me when I’m a crazed animal.