Making a more sustainable choice and investing in the future of businesses.

By shopping ‘slow’ and supporting smaller makers or certified brands, you are often making a more sustainable choice and investing in the future of businesses that are truly trying to make a positive difference to how we live and what we buy.

At Woodend General we are all about discovering functional, beautiful, and well-made goods and gifts for our customers. This means understanding the values of the brand we are buying from, how and where the goods were made, and thinking long term about the impact the goods will have on the earth.

One of our favourite brands that we stock, and is doing a really good job of this is Olli Ella; a Certified B Corporation company (a global certification that measures a company’s entire social and environmental impact). Others we love and stock include smaller makers and creatives such as ceramicists Kim Wallace, Adele Macer & Suzie Fox and Erin Lightfoot – all of whom hand-make their products here in Australia, often producing one-off pieces.

There are a growing number of boutique shops within our region, making a conscious effort to sell ethically made and sustainable goods. Here, we look at those shops which are leading the charge.

A great option in Woodend is Think Alike. They offer a curated selection of Australian and New Zealand designers with a strong focus on sustainable practices and local production. NZ-based Kowtow is one of their leading innovative labels, with every piece in their collection made from 100% biodegradable materials. Other local brands to watch include Sister Studios, Dominique Healy, Lois Hazel and Jillian Boustred.

One of the most considered and beautiful stores in our region, Daylesford-based Manteau Noir has been a personal favourite for years. They stock superior Australian skincare brand Aesop, as well as founder Victoria’s own label; a beautiful line of ethically and sustainably made womenswear. The store champions small artisan makers, sustainable and ethical production methods, and stunning heritage brands.

Daylesford is home to several other fantastic options, including the family-owned Alpaca Passion, where you will find stylish alpaca garments and cosy homewares. One of the most sustainable and luxurious natural fibres, alpaca is known for its softness, incredible lightness and supreme warmth. They work with suppliers and designers in Peru to ensure their own label A.P. MODA includes the highest quality, most affordable and fashionable alpaca garments.

Creswick Woollen Mills offers a beautiful selection of homewares, accessories and apparel. Their products are made from natural fibres including merino wool, possum, alpaca, cashmere, cotton and bamboo. They work closely with all suppliers to ensure fibres are 100% natural, sustainable and eco-friendly. Visit them at their historic Mill in Creswick, or their shop in Daylesford.

A new offering, Slow Lane Daylesford sell a collection of Australian brands for those that value the importance of quality local brands. Focusing on sustainably and ethically manufactured goods, their collection showcases natural fibres with everything from hemp bags and hats and organic skincare. Brands of interest include – Daylesford Apothecary, Golden Brown the Label, Honest Studios and Seljak.

At The Farmer’s Wife, you’ll find a carefully curated selection of beautiful quality clothing and homewares, along with an eclectic mix of preloved treasures. Always a rewarding shopping experience, you can visit them in both Creswick and Daylesford.

If searching for pre-loved goods, you can’t go past the Amazing Mill Market in Daylesford. Home to the country’s largest mix of collectibles, retro fashions, vintage goods and jewellery, you can spend hours trawling the vast collection of vintage clothes and accessories. We often buy props and fixtures here for use in our own store.

In Kyneton, Camilla on Piper offers a beautiful selection of contemporary women’s fashion, with a focus on high quality, ethical brands. One such brand is Pol Clothing, a high quality and innovative knitwear collection designed to last. Another label they stock is Lou Lou Australia – classic pieces that are trans-seasonal and versatile – aimed at providing long lasting wardrobe essentials as part of the slow fashion movement.

Finishing in Trentham, another treasure trove is the Green Store, which specialises in natural, organic, and ethically sourced products. They stock a diverse range of quality body care and cleaning solutions for those with sensitivities, allergies or families wanting a chemical free home. You’ll also discover beautiful scarves and socks, bags, up-cycled bespoke furniture and lighting, toys, gifts, games and much more.

About the author

Woodend General 6
Louise Pannell, Woodend General
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Woodend General is a carefully curated lifestyle store with a strong focus on high quality, functional and ethically made goods for the Home, Garden and Family.

Located in the picturesque Macedon Ranges town of Woodend, just over an hour from Melbourne and Bendigo, Woodend General was created by sisters Lou and Ange who between them have years of experience in retail, buying and visual merchandising. With a dream to open a shop stemming from a childhood of ‘playing shops’ Lou and Ange are both locals, living in the region with their families. The opportunity to open Woodend General is a dream come true for the pair.