By Phoenix Naman

Focus On Newtown: Hands Head Heart & Rising Sun Workshop


What first comes to mind when you think of local industry? Is it the quiet coffee shop down by the corner where you work, with the barista who knows you by name? Could it be the florist you only visit on blue moon occasions, that has an urban jungle competing for all of your senses as you step through the door? For Newtown, we’re fortunate to host a thriving landscape of brick and mortar small businesses that collectively juxtapose the steel giants we see in the distance.

In Adrian William’s latest episode of ‘Focus On’, we had the privilege of being taken inside the inner-workings of Hands Head Heart (HHH), a creator of timeless porcelain pieces - led by Zaya Badrakh and Geordie Tait.

Geordie & Zaya of Hands Head Heart

Zaya, alongside her partner Geordie, narrate the careful process behind the production of their handmade customs, with Zaya’s love for moulding unique creations from less interesting material being the catalyst of the business. “(As a child), I had lots of hand-me downs… I always figured out a way to make them look better… I loved the process of it”.

Supporting this, and as well a great clue to how HHH has achieved such incredible success since the studio opened in 2015, Geordie recognises his partner’s process, in that “it’s the challenge that Zaya likes”.

Hands Head Heart WorkshopA charming example of their creativity-overcoming-challenge came to light in recent years, when HHH partnered with another Newtown business - Rising Sun Workshop. Rising Sun is a one-of-a-kind business, not just in Newtown, but the across the whole of Sydney - as it doubles as both a hatted restaurant and communal DIY motorcycle workshop.

So when the ramen restaurant needed new bowls with specific dimensions that couldn’t be store bought, Rising Sun’s Nick Smith commissioned his close friends Zaya and Geordie to execute his vision. The bowl needed to serve customers with an exact amount of broth, which challenged the duo to rethink their approach after presenting rounds of prototypes. The final result is an example of pure creativity that harks back to Zaya’s childhood, of making something fit for purpose, but also something in-line to her distinct wit and style.

Diners at Rising Sun Workshop now see a fuel gauge etched within walls of the bowl they’re eating from. It’s a creative solution to Nick’s ‘perfect pour’ problem, allowing him to accurately serve 10mm below the top of the bowl.

Support Hands Head Heart by visiting their website, where you can order custom porcelain products, either as one-off items, or in full sets to deck your kitchen out! Or perhaps you have a dinner party in the near future? You can also browse HHH’s line of ready made bowls and other products here.

Rising Sun Workshop's Ramen Bowl

Already a fan of the Rising Sun Workshop Ramen Bowl? Order your very own here.

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