FK chats to Shannon from her label, Rabbit & the Duck
Can you introduce your label to our readers, Rabbit & the Duck
The Rabbit & the Duck love crafty things. They also love the colour red, big piles of neatly folded fabrics, and anything with polka dots. We produce a range of stationery, homewares and fashion accessories including refillable journals, pencil cases, purses and wallets, mobile phone covers, and greeting cards and gift tags. All of our products are made by hand in Melbourne, Australia.
What is your background, and how did Rabbit & the Duck get started?
I’ve always been a crafty girl. My first experience with sewing was with my grandma, we made a pencil case that I still use today! Despite this crafty upbringing I ended up working in an office doing the 9-5 thing. It was not a good fit at all! About 4 years ago I decided to teach myself to sew properly – I found a second hand sewing machine and before I knew it there was fabric taking over the house! I produced a small range of wares and decided to try selling them – I set up an online store, starting running market stalls and found a couple of shops who were prepared to give me a chance. From these small beginnings the business grew and I am now able to devote myself to my label on a full-time basis. I feel so fortunate to be able to make a living from my craft, and to have a good reason to buy more fabric!
What would be your top three tips for market success?
Tip #1: Get creative with your display. Always be on the lookout for interesting items you can use. I found an old set of scales in a second hand store and had them for months before I realised they would be perfect for holding loose buttons.
Tip #2: Make sure your products are priced. Pricing should be kept simple and in keeping with the look of your stall. Your products are the main focus and while it should be easy for a customer to see the price of something, it’s not the first thing you want them to see. Make them fall in love with your product and the price won’t be an issue!
Tip #3: Have fun and don’t be afraid to try new things. If something is not working, move it around. Look at other stalls and see which displays attract your eye. The beauty of having your own business is that it can grow and change with you. Every day and every market teaches us something new!
Where do you find inspiration?
Inspiration can be found in all sorts of places. It might be the pretty packaging of a parcel that arrives in the mail. A lovely piece of vintage fabric. Or the flowers growing outside my studio window. I love to collect things that have caught my eye and keep an inspiration board in my studio filled with random bits and pieces such as creative business cards, pages pulled from magazines and anything else that I love.
What are some of your favourite places to hang out & get inspired in Melbourne?
I’m fortunate to live and work within walking distance of the beach – even in the middle of Winter I will pull on my warmest coat + hat + scarf + gloves and head to the beach to take a walk, eat my lunch, or just sit and think. I also love hunting through the local op shops and vintage stores – you never know what treasures you may find!
Whats are some plans for Rabbit & the Duck this year?
We are excited to be coming up to Brisbane to attend The Finders Keepers – it’s our first interstate market and I’m looking forward to seeing some of the local crafty talent that Brisbane has to offer!