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Posts in: urban renewal

Meet The Backyard Network

16 July 2015 | Posted in: business, environment, Leichhardt, sydney, urban renewal

What is your name and business name?

Matt Moore, Backyard Network

Can you describe what you use your Renew space for?

I make materials and objects other people are finished with into functional garden and household goods
Screen Shot 2015-07-16 at 2.47.43 pm

What have been some of the highlights about having a space to test your idea?

Being able to experiment freely without worrying about meeting an expensive rent and exploring ideas and interests with a huge range of people.

While participating in the Renew program, what have been some of the discoveries you’ve made in your area?
I’ve learned how to split pallet wood to bring the organic whorls and knots hidden in the wood to the surface.

What other creative enterprises are you inspired by?
I’m inspired by the Maker Space, Lentil As Anything, HoboGro.

What is your favourite place or space to visit in Leichhardt?

The park.

Your website, store address or where we can find you?

Backyard Network page on Facebook, website coming soon.

July with Renew Leichhardt

25 June 2015 | Posted in: arts, business, Events, gallery, Leichhardt, live music, News, photography, sydney, urban renewal, workshops

Winter is in full swing but that has not stopped our Renew Leichhardt participants from developing a great program of events for you to join in on. There are a range of workshops (for adults and children), a gallery bus tour which starts in Leichhardt, music jam night, film forum, life drawing, terrarium making, RISO printing and MORE! Here is a list featuring some highlights.

279783125Wyld & Whimsy
School holidays are upon us and Wyld & Whimsy have created a great program of workshops to keep you young ones busy. There is a crafter noon session, puppet making, papier-mâché and so many more fun classes to sign up to

Visit their website for more details on how you can make a variety of crafty stuff including items similar to those stocked in store!

10420211_1444404462531704_1759676992407694146_nThe Rizzeria

10502103_1093407204006205_480409375043842764_n Night Time Clay Play (Adults)
For five weeks in July and August The Rizzeria are having evening pottery workshops. In week one, you will do the basics in hand-building – pinch pots, coiling and slabs. Then you will have the next three weeks to work on your own project.

In the last week you will use underglaze & glazes to finish your creation! A kiln is available to fire them. You can work at you own pace with a glass of wine or a cup of tea to help you along.
The workshops will go from 6-8pm on the following Tuesdays – July 14th, 21st, 28th & August 4th & 18th.It’s $125 per person, this includes clay & firing (& drinks). Book now with Cass on 0449 237 932. Six spots available.
School Holiday Clay Play
Clay is a wonderful, tactile medium. Its three-dimensional nature forces kids to think about structure, shapes and forms.
This session will allow them to experiment with a variety of building techniques while they learn to think about their ideas and adapt to change along the way. Every child will create something special to take home.

Bring a box to take your treasures home in. For bookings call Cass on 0449 237 932. Workshops will take place on 8 and 10 July from 2pm until 3:30pm.

To see all The Rizzeria workshops visit their Facebook page.

Skyfire Studios
Skyfire launched this month with their Pulse exhibition launch and have been making their presence known across the wider Sydney city area with their exciting program which includes a soon-to-launch artist in residence program, a first EVER Leichhardt Gallery Tour-By-Bus, creative business consultancy service, a film forum, tai chi classes and much more.

Broadsheet Sydney recently published a great article showcasing this unique, collaborative and open creative hub (read it here). Here is a quick snippet of some of their upcoming events. Be sure to visit their website for full details.

Friday June 26th: FREE Friday Night Jam Session

7:30pm: Musicians who don’t know each other pop by to use the space and have a relaxed jam together. Skyfire Studios will alternate jam leaders so everyone gets a chance to workshop their ideas, but mostly it’s just good practice for those who need a space and can’t find or afford one.

Friday July 3rd: Friday Film Forum
8pm: $movie night with gourmet popcorn, and espresso and drinks by donation. First screening is the 1999 Kevin Smith ensemble piece “Dogma”.

art classSaturday July 18th: First EVER Leichhardt Gallery Tour-By-Bus
11am -4pm: $60 We will take a mini bus around Leichhardt and surrounding suburbs to visit some of the best inner west galleries, do wine tastings along the way, stop at a local restaurant for lunch, and serve free espresso at Skyfire at the conclusion of the tour. Full details here.

Over the next two weeks Skyfire Studio’s Artist In Residency program will kick off with an artist setting up camp in the space two days a week. They will work in the studio to produce an exhibition that will launch toward the end of August. One of the artists participating has been doing a residency in India for the last few months, and will return there in September.  Sign up to their newsletter to keep up to date!
Makers Place
Makers Place have had a gigantic month in June with participation in wider community events such as VIVID event ‘Upskill to Upcycle’ and presenting a Mini Makers Place @ Blue Lab  as part of The Creative Industries Symposium Blue Mountains. Read about their exciting June here. What is on in July?
electro workshop
Electrocraft – Electronics for Women and Girls
from 6:30pm until 9pm.

If you’re looking for learning informally about electronics in a social setting, the Electrocraft Meet-Ups is for you!
The Meet-Ups are every first thursday of the month from 6:30 pm to 9pm.

Depending on the meet-ups, some topics are proposed. You can also find more information here.

3d3D Printing Beginners Class
3D Printing is a 30 year old technology which most people still know very little about. This course will help you to understand this now rapidly growing industry, help you make informed decisions about their functions and the role they’ll play in making our future more sustainable. It is primarily non-technical so anyone can join in, learn or use the notes as stepping stones with their own 3D Printer or 3D printers at Makers Place. For more info visit here.

The Backyard Network
IMG_6786Matt is working on a project with Sumo Salad at the moment in his store, creating custom made menu holders. You can ask Matt to build your own custom planter boxes, even furniture. Visit his Facebook Page for more details or call Matt on 0435 169 672.
The Writing Workshop
The Writing Workshop is delivering as series of new workshops for adults. This hands-on, exercise-based creative writing course will help you create settings, events and characters for an extended work of fiction.

The Writing Workshop runs after-schoolschool holidayonline and in-school creative writing workshops and activities for children and young people. Published authors lead all courses – current workshop leaders include Bernard Cohen, Emily Maguire and Ed Wright. (Click on the links for more information: after-schoolschool holiday,online and in-school.)

Backyard Network Makes Menu Holders for SumoSalad

20 June 2015 | Posted in: business, News, sydney, urban renewal

This week Matt from The Backyard Network is working on a project for SumoSalad, with their head office situated in Leichhardt.

After seeing Matt’s work he was commissioned to design new menu holders for some of their stores.

We were lucky enough to stop by his shop on Norton Street to see the early stages of design.

The sketches show a great stand with plants and a space in the middle for the menus.

Visit his store and have a chat about your garden, want something custom built or just maybe you like the hanging plants?

Shop 145 Norton Street,

Leichhardt NSW 2040

Operating Hours Wednesday to Sunday 1pm to 6pm


Meet Makers Place

21 May 2015 | Posted in: Leichhardt, urban renewal, workshops

This week we decided to stop by Makers Place at The Italian Forum to chat with Melissa Fuller, a Maker of Makers’, see how their space is working and to find out a bit more about Leichhardt, as locals on the ground as part of Renew Leichhardt.

What is your business name?

Makers Place Incorporated

Can you describe what you use your Renew space for?

A community facility providing access to tools, equipment, education required for invention. Makers Place is a non-for-profit association. Members pay a monthly membership and get access to $30,000 worth of technology and skill sharing through community engagement.

What has been some of the best bits about having a space to test your idea?

Quite simply Makers Place would not exist without the Renew Leichardt initiative. We have been having to prototype our model and co-create with our local community. The best part about having access to the low cost premises is that we have been able to support environmental and social good projects.

While participating in the Renew program, what have been some of the discoveries you’ve made in your area?

I have discovered that Leichhardt is a very diverse area. There are people from many parts of the world. Leichhardt is also very creative; I have discovered art galleries, studio spaces, and people who work in the creative industries.

One of the most memorable discoveries has been stumbling across The School of Footwear and their founder Darren Bischoff.

This is where you can learn to make your own shoes in a fully equipped workroom. Darren teaches students all aspects of footwear construction, illustration, pattern cutting, upper stitching, shoe lasting, heeling and finishing.

Bar Sport on Norton street has the best Panini in town!

What is your favorite place or space to visit in Leichhardt?

We love to treat ourselves to tasty delights that Norton St Grocer has and taking a picnic to the park on the north end of Norton Street.

For a social beverage after work we can be found at the Royal Hotel and for entertainment, shows at the Australian Actors Center are great!

Your website, store address or where we can find you?

Shop 39, Ground Floor, 19-23 Norton St, Leicchardt 2040

Do you have any upcoming events to tell us about?

Yes, we have a few! Please see our website.