The Collective is certainly an inspiring store, not only in its wares, but its ideas as well. Brought into fruition by a desire to create a space for independent Australian artists, designers and crafters to showcase their original work, it becomes a gallery and a gift store simultaneously. And, because it has been set up this way, it brings boutique and beautiful at affordable prices.
Owned by Leonie McINtosh, the Collective was her vision; to create a space for a community of artists from all over Australia, a well-presented co-operative, that can at once be an expose for an artist and a "shopping oasis" for a customer.
This is my go-to store for anyone with kids, pregnant mums, newborns, there are even interesting and wonderful things for blokes here too. Charming mobiles handmade from felt - little hot air balloon, birds or elephants - create a whimsical air in any child's room. Delightful dresses and play wear for girls, and the most fun and exciting range of boys clothes. I have a son, and it's often hard to find great clothes for boys (the girls get all the good stuff), but not here, there are fabulous things for boys too.
There's elegant jewellery, fun jewellery, gourmet temptations, prints and art, toys and keepsakes, anything your heart desires and imagination could think of, and as diverse as the artists themselves. A few months ago, the store moved a little way in closer to the middle of Bay Terrace, and the corner shop creates a light an airy space that's perfect to show off the collections of craft.
I love this store, I'm not shy to say so. It's one of kind in Wynnum, and, I think, will become a pioneer, hopefully paving the way for more boutique shops of different styles to the bay. Supporting local and independent artists is important to me too. I like that there's a shop I can go to buy presents for people that will be unique originals. Supporting our own artists is a great thing for any community, why should the big department stores get all the glory and all our hard earned cash?
The next time you're over this way, save some time to wander through The Collective, you never know what you might find....