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REMEDY Melanie Clark

RemedyA wander through these stores is both a soothing, and reinvigorating, retail experience.

 

If you’re a lover of objects that fuse elements of the beautiful and the practical, there’s a good chance you’re already a regular at Remedy in Leederville and Fremantle. “Freo is my home town,” explains owner Melanie Clark, when asked why those two locations. “We lived there and knew the locals appreciated handmade quality and generally ‘got it’. It was where we kick-started with a small budget and the amazing support of the local crowd.

“From there we wanted to be on another shopping strip, which are very limited in Perth, and so we managed to lease a store in Leederville. We had looked at other areas but we just liked its grit; it was as close to a Melbourne feel (outside of Freo) at that time, and there is a whole new crew of people living all through those surrounding suburbs that we felt would like what we offer.”

She says the goal was to make retail a better experience with an alternate option–give a conscience, and support Australian designers and handcrafters. “We couldn’t think of a name to emanate that. While in the car talking about it, The Black Crowes came on the radio singing, ‘All I need is a remedy…’ There it was.”

A sense of creativity permeates Remedy’s offerings, and about three quarters of what Remedy stocks are Australian designed and/or genuinely Australian made. “Aesop skincare, all our jewellery ranges, Armadillo&Co floor rugs, Nancybird bags, wallets and clothing, Mokosh soaps, Kip & Co bedding, Otto and Spike picnic rugs, beanies and scarves, Queen B beeswax candles, uimi wool and cotton blankets, Once a Tree wooden cutting boards, most of our card ranges.”

As for the retail experience itself, “Most people inhale when they walk in,” notes Clark, crediting that to the mix of Aesop, and Mokosh soaps. She points out Remedy still has quite a few customers from its first days in Wray Avenue, Fremantle, who they’ve enjoyed friendships with for over a decade now.

The stores embody the ethos of the slow shopping movement, with sustainability a key element. (There is also a gift registry service.) At Remedy, attention is paid to the details. “Our wrapping paper is by WA graphic designer Kylie Thévenau, our web store by Melbourne artist Karla Pringle, and soon we will have stunning gift vouchers printed on a hand fed, treadle-operated press by The Little Press (Leederville locals who also make cards for us).”

According to Clarke, Remedy is featuring more West Australian makers at the moment than they ever have. “Keep an eye out for tassel garlands and amazing diamond-shaped piñata by another West Australian maker called Paper Paper.” Clarke is also excited to now be stocking the jewellery of Jessica Jubb. “She is a great talent from Gidgegannup.” In fact, the range is one of Remedy’s current bestsellers. “Jess Jubb’s small Dot earrings sold out in Fremantle the first day they were on the shelves! We’ve never had that happen before.”

 

GILLIAN O’MEAGHER