Elizabeth Bower helps organise the Nannas Makers Market in Mernda.
What’s your connection to the City of Whittlesea?
I have lived in Doreen/Mernda for about seven years now. My daughter and son-in-law moved here and I came to help with my grandchildren.
What do you like about where you live?
I love that we’re so close to farms and country areas. I love that we have so many talented artisans in the area, so that a makers market is viable.
What, if anything, would you change?
The intersections of Yan Yean Road and Plenty Road with Bridge Inn Road now need to have lights. Also, groups like Nannas Makers Market/Home Basics, who donate all profits to charity, find it difficult to secure low cost venues in the City of Whittlesea.
How did the Nannas Makers Market come about?
Nannas Home Basics Facebook page was started in 2013 by two ladies from Nutfield and Hurstbridge. In 2014 a craft group, meeting weekly at the Bridge Inn Hotel, was started, and from that a market started once a month. Firstly it was held at the Bridge Inn and now it’s the last Saturday of the month at the Uniting Church Hall in Schotters Road.
Do you specialise in a particular craft, and if so, how long have you been practicing it?
I do a little knitting and sewing but my ‘craft’ is more along the organising and talking lines. My efforts pale when I see the wood burning and turning of our two very talented 16-year-old stall holders.
Why do you think homemade markets are growing in popularity?
People are becoming more aware of the amazing talents of their neighbours and the quality of handmade as opposed to mass produced. We’ve even started running Lost Crafts events in conjunction with our winter markets, where you can come and learn crafts such as knitting, crochet, smocking etc. I’ve decided to learn to crochet this winter.
Where is your favourite local place to spend time?
I love a coffee so the coffee places in Laurimar are my favourite haunts. Appret, Ferguson Plarre, Slices all know me a little too well. I love the market because we’ve now got a great bunch of regulars who’ve become friends and newbies who will become friends. You have to put yourself out there but this is a great area to live.