Keeping it real in our City

​Workshops are the new black - Melissa Welsh Style and Design, York.

One of the biggest questions I get asked about living in the country is just “what do you do!?” I mean apart from the fact that I have a 3-year-old, a business of my own and a small farm to help run! It’s a common misconception really, that there is nothing to do out here. But gone are the days of sleepy little country towns that shut down on the weekends. Now you’re bound to always find something to pique your fancy no matter your interest. And part of that is thanks to Melissa Welsh of Melissa Welsh Style and Design.

Melissa runs an interiors and design business from the beautiful historical town of York. Only an hour drive from Perth, it offers that perfect blend of country hospitality and serenity, but with a bustling community at it’s core.

It was that question of how to spend one’s weekend that lead Melissa to start hosting her own range of artistic and creative workshops. A series of workshops that have been so incredibly well received that they’re currently selling out! But like most country women, especially Mum’s, Melissa found herself wanting to get her creative juices flowing (and not just spend her weekend watching the local boys play footy). There are no end of wonderful workshops and things to learn in the city. But what about us country folk? We can’t just dump the kids and head out to get our creative fix.

Enter a collaboration of a special kind.

Melissa teamed up with the wonderful folks at Botanicalia (a stunning retail space and coffee shop) and Gallery 152 on York’s Avon Tce, to host a series of workshops on all topics! From wreath making, working with succulents and kokodema to macramé. Melissa has teamed up with other small businesses and creatives to bring some fantastic options to the Wheatbelt locals.

I had the pleasure of sitting in on Melissa’s latest workshop, Living Succulent Frames hosted by the lovely and incredibly clever Jennifer Wyhoon of Naturally Floral.

And what a workshop! There’s none of this listening to boring folks drone on and on. None of this sitting and watching and not actually doing! Within minutes of getting started, Jen had us getting our hands dirty while we squished sphagnum moss into our wreath frames and sifting through soil to remove and sort our sweet little succulents.

An hour in and most of us had discovered some modicum of creativity (whether we thought so or not!). By lunch time, we had created a gorgeous succulent wreath, perfect for hanging up at home, or using as a lovely centre-piece! It really is incredible what you can do in just a few hours! And of course, we were all too busy creating to be nervous about meeting new people! It really was win-win all round!

So whether you’re a local looking for a creative outlet or a Perthian wanting a little something to do on a gorgeous weekend away, you’ll definitely want to bookmark Melissa’s workshops! Be sure to follow her on Facebook or Instagram to stay in the loop, as she has even more fabulous classes planned for the second half of this year!

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