We were lucky enough to spend the afternoon at The Church Farm General Store recently making DIY Flower Essences. Church Farm is the love-child of Amanda Callan and Andrew Morris who live in the old timber church in Billinudgel with their two young boys Banjo & Percy. They started selling home grown produce on their roadside stall which soon blossomed into an online general store where they sell handmade soaps and hot sauce. A DIY Guide to flower essences and a bit more about Amanda can be found at the bottom of the blog.
We were just at the Church the afternoon before the floods which hit Billinudgel, how did the Church hold up?
We are okay, there are definitely people worse off than us, it was such a crazy time. It was the biggest flood the church has ever been through.. and we had 2 feet of water come into the house, but everyone is okay.
How did you end up living in this beautiful Church?! Sheer luck, we were going for a Sunday drive with my parents and we said hey imagine if that church was for sale..and it was.
Your soaps and hot sauces are so amazing! What made you start making them both? And did one come before the other?
Oh thank you, we started making them around the same time.. when our garden in the front yard was producing quite well…and we had lots of spare tomatoes and habaneros (hence the sauce) and lots of peppermint, calendula, lavender etc (the herbs for the soaps). A bit has changed since then, we now grow most of the produce at our leased farm down the road at The Pocket, and now we make three types of sauces and other products with the produce we grow (curry pastes, turmeric pastes etc).
Where can we buy your soaps and sauces?
We have a stall every week at the New Brighton Farmers Market (Tuesday's) and Mullumbimby Farmers Market (Friday's). We also sell soaps and sauces on our website www.churchfarmgeneralstore.com where we also have a list of our stockists We used to have a roadside stall but it washed away in the flood.
What's the best and worst thing about living in the Church? The best thing - the open space and high ceilings. The worst - hmm nothing I can think of, besides the whole cyclone water rising situation.