About Timber Lane

MEET BEN - OWNER & DESIGNER AT TIMBER LANE & HIS SIDE KICK KODY

Take a moment to get to know the face behind Adelaide's newest market, retail display and event hire business, Timber Lane.

When and how did Timber Lane Designs come about?

My partner, Mel is a regular at markets, both with her own business and as a customer. Naturally I became a part of the market scene. I learnt about preparation, organisation and the amount of effort that goes into setting up a market stall. She spent hours setting up furniture and her products. It always looked amazing, but it was such an arduous task. I started chatting to different stall holders about their their products and their stalls. It wasn’t long before I realised that many of them had the same struggles.

So many business owners were after versatile displays to merchandise their products and it seemed that timber products were the sought-after look. The main problems were cost and that displays weren’t easily transportable. It got me thinking, researching and creating. I came up with versatile designs that give market stalls the wow factor they deserve. The flat-packed designs also allow products to be transported in the average car. Within weeks a website was being designed and I had business meetings with high-end clients.

Where does your product inspiration come from?

I find inspiration everywhere. I love finding different ways to make things. Designing each piece to be flat-packed and effortless to assemble is a great challenge.

Where did your passion with wood work evolve from?

I have fond memories spent with my Pa when I was younger. I would have been about 5 years old when Pa taught me how to use a handsaw. I remember clamping timber in his old, red vice and how he spent time teaching me how to make a straight cut. As I grew up he taught me an endless amount of skills that I have used throughout my working life. When he passed a few years ago I was honoured to be left all of his tools, including that exact saw and old, red vice he taught me how to use many years ago. That vice is now bolted to my work bench in my workshop. He was my inspiration then and continues to be now. He is the reason I am where I am, doing what I love doing today.

Beginning Timber Lane was a special moment that I would have loved to have cherished alongside my Pa. The memories I have of working with him in his workshop will always be held close to my heart and the echoes of him will live on through Timber Lane. The photo pictured above is the last photo ever taken of me and Pa in his workshop, with a tool that I restored for him for his 90th birthday. This special keepsake sits proudly in the Timber Lane office.

What are some of the things you love the most about Timber Lane Designs?

I have always loved working with my hands and being creative - Timber Lane combines both of them. Plus I love a good chin wag with other business owners at markets and events. I've never been too fond of technology but Timber Lane has allowed me to design new products using software that enables me to create incredible custom designs using CNC machines.

How do you hope to support other small businesses?

Supporting small businesses has been even more important since Covid impacted everything we do. I love small business and seeing people doing what they love to do - creating incredible products for everyday folk to enjoy. I am amazed at what people create and the incredible talent they have.

In the end I just hope to help by adding a little wow factor to the way small businesses display and merchandise their products. I want their products to stand out and get more of the attention that they deserve.

What do you hope that Timber Lane Designs will aspire to in years to come?

I just want to create a business that can supply a large range and affordable products to improve the aesthetics of markets, retail spaces, events and as more and more people are working from home these days, I also want to create versatile home office spaces.

Unfortunately at the moment, sourcing quality timber at reasonable prices is proving to be incredibly difficult due to the Australian timber shortage. I'm working with some local timber suppliers to try to keep costs down as best as I can.

Ultimately though, I'm looking forward to being able to collaborate with different markets, retail spaces and events around the country. From one small business to many others, between us we can all appreciate the feeling that comes from designing and creating beautiful products by hand for others to enjoy for years to come.

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