TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT YOURSELF:
Hello, I am Tara. I am the founder of Provider Store. I live in the Inner West with my Husband, Matt, our Shiba Inu, Pocari and our cat, Trent.
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO START PROVIDER STORE?
I have always been super crafty. Ever since I was little I was always doing arts and crafts, sewing my own clothes and attempting to build things. I ended up working in fashion but the non-creative side as an eCommerce manager. I just struggled with sitting in front of a computer everyday. I went on a holiday to Japan (this was close to a decade ago) and was so inspired by the craftsmanship and the celebration of the handmade, that I came back and resigned without any savings or any real plan. Having worked in the online world I was able to create a website pretty easily and rank myself in google, so I just started making things and adding them to the online store.
WHAT IS THE PHILOSOPHY BEHIND THE STORE?
The whole idea behind Provider Store is to celebrate the handmade and the craftsmanship behind it. We live in a fast paced, trend driven world where everything ends up in landfill. I just wanted to be able to tell the story behind each product we sell - about the maker and the region it came from. I want people to know that they can buy less but buy better and love something for a life time.
WHERE DID YOUR APPRECIATION FOR JAPANESE HERITAGE START?
Definitely on that first trip to Japan. It really resonated with me that someone can learn a craft and become a master of it and that’s what they do for the rest of their lives. I have met craftspeople who only make brooms and customers come far and wide to buy them. The way the Japanese pass down their skills through generations is really beautiful too. If you go to a pottery workshop, most are like a 4th, 5th or even 8th generation master. My grandmother had taught my mum how to sew and then my mum taught me how to sew, (which essentially was what started Provider) so I felt connected to this. After 2014, I started going back to Japan as much as I could so I could meet more and more artisans and bring their stories home.