“Supporting awesome people doing awesome things.”

Rebecca Elms says this is the philosophy behind her new lifestyle store Elms in Surry Hills, where you’ll find a hand-picked range of fashion, homewares, books, skincare, accessories and children’s products.

With a focus on sustainable and ethical brands, the store has been designed for consumers interested in enduring and unique items of quality over disposable trends.

“I wanted to showcase slow and mindful Australian and New Zealand brands in one beautiful space,” Elms tells Broadsheet. “There are so many great independent designers and brands here locally so I really wanted shine a light on them and support their businesses.”

Printed bed linen by Castle, candles and home fragrances by Black Blaze, and garments by Alessandra, Elka and Apartment are among the items you’ll find in Elms, which Rebecca launched after co-founding leather goods brand Arlington Milne and clothing and accessories label Elms & King. She also ran two retail stores in Sydney called The Hunted, and has leveraged her cumulative design, retail and interiors background to open Elms.

“In previous businesses I have had partners, so with this one I wanted to do something for myself,” she says. “Hence the name Elms: it is all mine.”

Born on the northern beaches, Rebecca lived in London before returning to Australia to settle in the inner east.

“Since moving back from overseas I have always lived around Surry Hills, Redfern and Paddington,” she says. “I love the area and the idea [for Elms] really came from what I felt was missing in Surry Hills: a beautiful fashion, home and gift offering.”

Highlights currently instore include twisted-suede mules by La Tribe, gold hoop earrings by Reliquia and coloured-glass candlesticks from Sydney brand House of Nunu. Posie soy-wax candles in amber jars make for perfect gifts, while a tiered black maxi skirt by Marle is an ideal gift-to-self for the summer party season.

Each piece in the store has been selected with consideration of its makers and their ethical and sustainable practices.

“We have done the hard work for you,” says Rebecca. “We know where our products were made, by who and what they are made from. This information is becoming much more important to consumers, and it’s a very important aspect of our selection process and being able to re-tell that story to our customers.”

The ethical focus extends to packaging: Elms uses compostable mailers and recycled delivery boxes, and is working towards becoming a certified carbon-neutral company as part of Rebecca’s vision to create a community built on valuing local and sustainable practices.

“Supporting our local community and the stores around us is vital to Elms’ success,” she says. “We only shop locally, whether that be flowers from Buds & Bowers or Merchant & Green, and coffees from Crown Street Grocer. We want to help these businesses to continue to grow as it’s only going to bring more people to the area and create better opportunities for us all.”

387 Crown Street, Surry Hills
(02) 9357 6635

Mon to Sat 10am–5pm
Sun 10am–4pm