This week we catch up with Alison Rentoul, creator and curator of ethical coastal homewares brand Aquamarine Home. Alison is an inspiration, her brands are all ethically sourced and created so you can buy her beautiful range knowing that both the planet and the artists involved have been respected in the production of this stunning collection of homewares. I hope you enjoy getting to know Alison!
1. Tell us a bit about yourself?
I grew up in Melbourne but went travelling soon after I finished Uni and ended up living overseas for 24 years! In that time I lived in London and then spent 18 years living in the South of France where I worked on luxury superyachts and in billionaires’ villas and then created my own business there. I definitely developed my passion and a keen eye for interior design while working for some of the world’s richest people – it was amazing being allowed to purchase incredible décor for them with an unlimited budget! I moved back to Australia in January 2017 and after selling my previous business I founded Aquamarine Home in December last year. These days I am more focused on sourcing incredible décor that is rich in heritage and has a beautiful story to tell about its origins and contribution to society and our planet.
2. Why did you start your business?
To change the world! I believe that business can be a force for good and I really wanted to create a beautiful homewares store where people could truly feel great about their purchases, knowing that they were helping to make the world a better place.
3. Where do you get your inspiration?
As I live in a seaside location I am lucky enough to walk along the beach every day. This is my constant source of inspiration. I can never get enough of the gorgeous blues of the sky and the sea, and that fresh coastal air. It reminds me why I am fighting so hard to help save our planet at the same time as helping people replicate the peace, tranquillity and restorative nurturing of a beautiful beach scene.
4. Do you have a favourite item in your collection?
It’s so hard to answer that, like picking a favourite child!! I hand select every item in our collections so I love all of them, but I have to say I do have a soft spot for our handmade ceramics, and the driftwood spoons!
5. What does an average day look like for you?
If I’m not out and about meeting interior designers or other industry contacts, I’ll be at my desk madly driving the machine behind the scenes!
6. Are there any current trends you are inspired by at the moment?
I absolutely love the fact that more and more people are becoming more conscious about the things they buy, and the trend towards more ethical and sustainable goods is extremely heartwarming and inspiring.
7. Where is your favourite beach?
It would have to be Safety Beach, where I live – although I did spend a lot of time in the Caribbean when I was working on yachts and it’s pretty hard to beat any of those beaches too!
8. Do you have an item you can’t live without for a day at the beach? (your own product or otherwise!)
It would have to be one of our beautiful hand-loomed Turkish Pashtemals, they are amazing to use as a sarong, towel or blanket and they dry so quickly, the sand just falls off them.
9. If you could holiday anywhere in the world where would you go?
That’s a really tough question as I love travelling and would happily go just about anywhere but it would definitely have to be somewhere with a beach. Bali is a favourite, and I loved surfing in Costa Rica when I was younger. Lately, I’ve been hearing a lot of great things about Hawaii so I might have to go there one day!
10. What’s next for your business, anything exciting on the horizon you can share with us?
We are in the process of creating our own Aquamarine branded product range – it’s going to be a while in the pipeline but I’m excited to be working directly with artisans and helping them create a viable and profitable trade partnership with products that will be just perfect for beach house lovers around the world.
Please view the gorgeous range of Aquamarine ethical coastal homewares here. We will keep you up to date when Alison’s branded Aquamarine range launches. Sign up for our newsletter below to receive our updates.