Talk about a talented duo! Partners in life and work, Stephanie and Doron both work for their own clients in the marketing and creative sphere, and have just launched their own project: a store and hire destination for lovers of the great outdoors. Homecamp has wide appeal, from the general camper after some new kit, the slightly more style-savvy or luxe-seeking camper, to the dedicated festive-goer looking for that stand-out tent, and couples hunting down accommodation for their wedding that guests will never forget! Homecamp is all about top quality, great design and a good old dose of nature-loving fun (can you tell I’m sold?!). Here’s what the duo had to say…
Tell us about your backgrounds?
I come from a PR/marketing background working mainly for a Melbourne-based PR agency before leaving to focus on setting up Homecamp and working as a freelance with my own PR/marketing clients. Doron grew up in the UK and spent most of his career there working in digital media and web development. Since coming to Australia Doron has been involved with getting various food related projects off the ground including CERES Fair Food, Loving Earth, and Dibble (which he co-founded) as well as setting up a new event business. He also works with freelance clients day-to-day.
What convinced you to take the plunge and start your own business?
Ever since we got together (we got married in December!) we have been talking about starting our own business. Doron is always full of ideas so it was a discussion about what we could do and how we could best use our skills and our interests, as well as create a lifestyle for ourselves that was flexible and on our terms. We owned a bell tent for a few years and would always get comments on how great it was when we took it to music festivals and other camping trips. I can’t remember the exact moment but we just started thinking that we could brand and manufacture our own version of the tent, along with other well considered products for the outdoors. We did a bit of research and could see that this type of thing was big overseas and we thought it was missing here, so we just took the plunge! The idea of creating our own brand, products, website etc really excited us.
What does an average day involve?
Since leaving my full time job and starting Homecamp it’s hard to say what an average day actually is. But typically, on a good day I’m out of bed by 7am to do some exercise (yoga or a walk/run), then brekkie, a flat white and into work on my laptop at our home office. Doron and I both work on our other clients as well as Homecamp so it’s a mixture of the two that makes up the day. For Homecamp I am usually responding to enquiries and preparing quotes, working on some PR and marketing activity such as approaching media and other brands/individuals we’d like to work with, fulfilling online orders and monitoring/updating social media. Usually Doron and I have a quick meeting about key priorities and there is constant discussion about ideas and plans! Doron takes care of most of the product development and research for brands we want to work with and stock, while I manage most of the customer service. I usually head out for a meeting or coffee with various people and clients too as part of my freelance work. We are also pretty obsessed with food so we always like to cook a healthy, delicious dinner from scratch which takes up half the evening! Then it’s reading before bed as we don’t own a TV (but we might watch a show or a movie on the laptop too.
Where do you get inspiration from?
For Homecamp we get lots of inspiration from the States because camping and the outdoors is so huge over there with a number of brands doing cool things in that space, plus many of the products we sell are manufactured there. We follow a bunch of photographers and brands on Instagram, I also love Kinfolk and Folk Magazine for their beautiful aesthetic.
Locally I also follow lots of stylists, photographers and designers on Instagram (too many to count or name!), I love reading Dumbo Feather for ‘life’ inspiration and I love listening to Triple R for new music and Radio National for interesting shows.
I regularly read The Design Files and am also really into Planthunter for its beautiful and thought provoking take on the plant world. Honestly I am just constantly inspired by so many local creatives and businesses in Melbourne and Australia and really enjoy discovering all of the gems in our city alone, whether it’s a local florist, a cafe, a jewellery designer or someone doing something really positive for the world. We have so much talent and creativity here.
Finally, nature and being outdoors is a constant source of inspiration – whether it’s just being outside with the veggie patch, climbing mountains or swimming in the ocean.
What are your goals for Homecamp in 2015?
We have started the business with a relatively small range of goods which we are going to expand, providing everything you could need for a great weekend away out in nature. We plan to expand the luxe camp accommodation business into other states this year and see a lot of potential for people putting bell tents on their properties as extra guest lodging or even renting them as holiday accommodation – we are already setting this up for a number of properties around Victoria. Finally, our dream is to design and manufacture here in Australia and we are looking to partner with passionate designers and makers to make this happen.
Tell us a little about the wedding hire aspect – how do brides go about hiring?
We love providing our tents for weddings – it’s such a special and unique way to accommodate guests. We offer either luxe or basic tents depending on the requirements. Brides just need to contact us to get a personalised quote and we can take it from there!
Where do you think the perfect ‘glamping’ wedding would be?
That’a a tough one given there are so many beautiful spots but I’d have to say somewhere in the Otways in Victoria or the northern NSW hinterland around Byron Bay.
Images courtesy of Homecamp and taken by the talented Brooke Holm and Amanda Fordyce.