The Swamphen Goes Analogue (Again)

Purple Swamphen Flinders Island beach

Well, it was amazing while it lasted (thank you, wonderful supportive people!), but the time has come to officially turn off my increasingly-neglected online store 🙁  I can’t believe how busy it’s been in-store since July! The shop move coincided with Tasmanians being encouraged to explore their own state, so it’s been wonderfully bonkers busy adjusting to a new space and chatting with lovely visitors.

Anyone who’s ever sold something online will know how long it can take to snap a photo of something, upload it, write the guff to go with it, promote it to potential buyers, then arrange to send it to the new owner. Imagine doing that for many multiples of items… most of them one-off unique treasures… well, you get the idea. I need twice as many hours in my days. I’d much rather focus on greeting people in store and chatting about our wonderful items and island.

I’m still happy to post items off Flinders: if you think I might stock that doover you’ve been looking for, do get in touch via Instagram or email (hello AT thepurpleswamphen.com.au). Unfortunately the complicated nature of Facebook means that Messenger is awkward and slow for me… if that’s your preferred message app then use it, but it might take a day or two for me to get back to you (compared to a couple of hours for insta or email).

Anyway, I like to think that the slower gentler nature of the in-store experience suits Flinders Island better… it certainly suits me to take a day off and head to the beach instead of feeling tied to a computer! 🙂

The Swamphen finds a new nest!

Purple Swamphen Flinders Island sunset

Yes, the Flinders Island rumour is true: the Swamphen is expanding!

This time of year is a signigicant one for the Swampy: on 29th June 2014 the doors opened for the first time. Two years later Mel took over the business solo, freeing Helen up for coffee roasting & other important tasks. Now, as the Swamphen turns 6, we’re moving next door into the larger, lighter premises of 9 Lagoon Rd!

This move means the Swamphen can take in larger items (eg locally made furniture), expand the range of handmade gifts & plastic-free homewares, and hopefully offer workshops & classes. I have some big dreams!

I’m very conscious of keeping the growth slow & organic though, so I can keep it sustainable long-term. I can’t support my local makers & customers if I burn out! So bear with me as I learn how far I can fly 🙂

The move takes place during the July school holidays (Mon 6th onwards). I’ll be trying to stay open the whole time… we’ll see how well that goes!

Thank you so much to my amazing makers & customers for giving me the confidence to take this next step.

Flinders Island handmade goes online!

Purple Swamphen Flinders Island handmade online shop

April 2020: It was always my intention to have part of the Swamphen online, but it took a global pandemic to finally push me down the rabbithole! It’s going to be pretty rough for a while, as I’m trying to throw products at it as fast as I can. This means I’m not overthinking the photography and the descriptions. Hopefully they’ll be upgraded once I get the online shop stocked to a decent point.

Postage days are the same as Swamphen opening days (check our instagram or facebook for updates). I’ll aim to get parcels there by 2pm to catch the afternoon mail plane.

If you’re familiar with the Swamphen nest in Whitemark, you’ll have a rough idea of the items I stock. It’s going to be impossible for me to put every item online with pics and descriptions. If you think something exists but you don’t see it here online please contact me. Chances are it’s on the shelf but not online yet.

I’m more than happy to put together packages, and to suggest items. Need something for that niece who’s turning 11? For your cousin who was supposed to be getting married? A little something for yourself? Give me your budget and some guidelines and I can help out.

Yep, it’s the same Swamphen service as always, including free gift wrapping. You’ll have to provide the soundtrack yourself, but know that I’m playing random vinyl while packing your order!

And obvs I’m obsessively washing my hands constantly, usually to Cottleston Pie.

Update July 2020: the excitement of moving the Swamphen nest next door has stalled the online shop…

I currently don’t have time to keep up with adding items, especially since so many islanders have discovered their creative streaks! This one-woman show is flat out adding new things to the shelves and greeting the in-store customers. You’re still welcome to contact me if you’re looking for something specific or would like some ideas, but unfortunately I can’t focus on the virtual store at the moment. The Flinders Island wilderness claims whatever spare time I find!

Mel x