Sustainable homewares & lifestyle goods
Wandering Hunter St in Newcastle’s East End, you can see the new area slowly coming to life with long-term renovations beginning to remove the scaffolding and take on a whole new look. Getting in early, before the area really starts to reshape is none other than Moral Store, a unique and ethically sourced homewares and lifestyle store.
Brought to you by local girl, Taylor Murray, Moral Store swung open its doors in early December 2020 right in time for the Christmas rush. Sitting just opposite Hunter St favourite coffee spot, One Penny Black, Moral Store is a pleasant surprise to be found amongst the chaos of the area’s renovations.
With 2020 putting Taylor out of a job in March due to COVID-19, like so many of us, she was thrown quite the curveball. Rather than dwelling on the negative, Taylor saw an opportunity to dive headfirst into her long-term dream, to open up a homewares and lifestyle space dedicated to sustainable and ethically sourced goods.
“This was kind of a long-time dream. It was one of those things you talk about when you’re lying in bed with your partner, asking the big questions like what you would do if you knew you couldn’t fail. When I lost my job, I decided to just go for it, I had nothing to lose,” Taylor said.
Most of 2020 was dedicated to working on a business plan, curating products, and finding the perfect spot, it was in August that things for Moral Store really started to come together.
Getting the keys to the space in September, Taylor, her family, and her partner Reece had a big few months ahead of them turning the old souvenir store into a beautifully crisp interior filled with a curated collection of pieces in just a few short months.
“We did a lot to the space to get it the way you see it. The shelving at the top and the bottom was originally there but we painted it up. It was glass shelving all around with changerooms at the back and the floor was all carpeted.
“There were pigeonhole boxes, and the counter had this pressed metal on the front. I took that off and picked up some tiles from Earp Brothers to clean that up. We were basically in here every day just trying to get it ready.”
With a passion for home décor, Taylor has been putting her heart and soul into styling her own home and has now done the same with Moral Store, adding her touch of luxury to bring a sanctuary to you.
“I’ve always loved home décor and love styling my own place. We try to live mindfully & responsibly at home. We make all of our cleaning products and we live a healthy lifestyle.”
Wandering around the store, there is a distinct style of the products found within, consisting of muted tones, nice to the touch textures, and an air of lightness.
“All the brands here are sustainable and are ethically produced products. There are a few labels that source materials and manufacturing overseas, however they are all Australian owned and they’re all owned by women.”
The product range currently covers furniture, ceramics, books, linen, art pieces, cushions, picnic rugs, candles, tea, self-care products, skincare, jewellery, bags, and much more. The store is currently working with 20 different brands (with more on the way) and knowing you can purchase goodies either in-store or online, you will always be able to browse the Moral Store goods.
“With each brand, I asked myself whether they met the store’s values and checked to see if they were stocked anywhere else in Newcastle. If anything was stocked locally, I didn’t approach the brand. Fingers crossed, there should be no crossover of products in here with any other store across town.
“Providing all goes well, I’d like to keep the core brands in here and the only other products I hope to build on over time are more of the handmade ceramics. I would love to support more local ceramicists and artists by showcasing their work in store.”
Whether you need a little retail therapy, looking for that special piece for the home, or even browsing for the perfect gift, drop into the newest addition to Newcastle's East End, Moral Store.