Come on a lovely journey to lutruwita /Tasmania with the wondrous talent of Eliza Rogers. Eliza works in rhythm with the seasons and specialises in making botanical installations for businesses and flowers for parties and events with her business This Natural World . We were lucky to catch some time in between the daily forage and chat about everything from Everlasting sculptures, experimenting with layers, a love throwing dinner parties, and the most incredible list of 'Tassie Favourites' you won't want to miss!
Eliza captured on film in our River collection <3
This year I moved into a new studio, in the foothills of kunanyi (Mount Wellington), right around the corner from where I live in nipaluna (Hobart). I work in rhythm with the seasons and specialise in making botanical installations for businesses and flowers for parties and events. Lately, I've been experimenting with dried materials that I work into 'Everlasting' sculptures on a base of salvaged hardwood, which I update seasonally at various venues around town (restaurants, MONA, and some private homes). Often I'm putting flowers fresh into an arrangement one week and then retaining them to dry the next, experimenting with how things evolve and saving everything I can. I work hard to minimise waste in my studio, so it's satisfying to make the most of my materials like this.
So far, we have hosted a truly gorgeous gig with a visiting musician Hannah Darling (I had goosebumps the whole time), and my mate Luke Andree is popping up monthly with a cellar door so that folks can taste the beautiful wine he makes under his label, Sonnen. It's all still fresh, and I'm navigating the act of balancing my calendar as spring is a very busy time for me in the studio, but I'm so excited to open the place up to the community over the summer.
My talented friend Holly White designed the interior for me, and it is a reflection of both her dedication to quality and her considerate eye. All the furniture is modular and movable on castors, and throughout the day, enormous windows flood with natural light. We are scheming various workshops (flowers, ceramics, colour theory!) for the warmer months, plus a mini-market (complete with bloody mary bar).
Folks have been reaching out with all sorts of ideas, and it will be fun to see which ones take off. My vision for Earthside is a meeting place - a "room of requirement" that the community can come into and make their own. I think a lot about our place in the cosmos, how wild it is that we're even spinning around the universe on this big rock, and so Earthside is an allusion to those musings... It's a place that is both specific and universal. A home here on earth.
What do you love most about living in Nipaluna / South Hobart? Can you share some secrets with us mainlanders?
Can you describe your style? How do you select your clothes and what do you feel best in?
Right now, I love a good quilted vest! My work is very physical, so my clothes must often allow me to move - I've been leaning into a lot of sportswear lately, but I like mixing it with soft and feminine pieces (like tops with balloon sleeves or vests with large collars) to keep things feeling a bit tongue-in-cheek. Much like my philosophy in work, I like to be resourceful with my clothing and enjoy sewing and repurposing old things.
There's an incredible chain of consignment stores in Australia called Goodbyes - I worked in the nipaluna chapter for years when they first opened down here, and have found a lot of fun, second-hand pieces there. If I'm buying new, I expect things to last and prefer to support brands whose ethos I can get behind.
Being an event superstar, what would be your ultimate way to celebrate?
Now that spring is here, I'm team salad. I had a bunch of old Alice Waters books sitting in my eBay cart for ages, and I finally bought this one recently. The intro is truly moving. She speaks of the vegetable growers who have supplied her iconic restaurant in Berkeley, CA., since the 70s and outlines how important these relationships are to the quality of her food. (I feel the same about the flower growers down here, particularly dear Marian and Rob from The Hut Flower Farm).
I get a fortnightly supply of veggies from my mates Dylan and Grace at Broom and Brine, and wow! It is a truly special CSA. So often, I'm receiving vegetables I've never heard of, things that Dylan and Grace eat for the first time simply because they have taken the time to grow them! They update information on all the things they grow in an immaculately kept "Produce Library" on their website - which is truly worth a browse if you're that way inclined. Eating their produce is like travelling the world's gardens in a salad bowl.
If friends stay the night, then the best morning treat you can imagine is a bake-at-home croissant from Pigeon Whole Bakery. Total luxury!