881 High Street Thornbury VIC 3071 Australia Telephone: +61 3 9484 6001
Trading Hours: Tuesday to Saturday, 10 - 5

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Sunday, November 6, 2011


Well it's been a while since our last post, so here's an update on our little shop. Starting with our Steampunk corner, we now have a specialised range of fobs - from watches to pedometers to voltmeters. We also have the brass goggles ring in store, available in both ladies and gents sizes, direct from England.

New vintage stock has recently arrived from sunny South Australia including haberdashery, industria and tools.

We also have a wider range of new stock - from stationery to organic soaps, face creams, market baskets, parasols and coming soon to our gardenwares, secateurs!

To help you in your Christmas shopping, we are now open Friday nights from November 11 until December 23. All gift wrapping is complimentary.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Pianola scrolls

Many people wonder what they can do with the pianola scrolls we sell (apart from play them on a player piano of course).

So we explain how good they can look if you unroll part of them and hang them on a wall.

Or in the case of our place - in a stairwell where you can get a good 12 foot of pianola scroll down a wall.

We think they look pretty good this way.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

3 Month's Young

It's hard to believe this week is our 3rd month anniversary. Hooray!

To help us celebrate, you are welcome to print out this discount voucher and come into the store. Using it is simple - just chose anything from our current stock this week (14-18 September 2011). Sorry, no lay-bys with the voucher.

10% Discount
Because we're 3 month’s young

the manufactory

810 High Street

Thornbury VIC 3071

(03) 9484 6001

To be used between 14-18 September 2011 only. Sorry, no lay-bys.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Esme and the laneway

We had a lovely visitor to the store a while back who asked if she could return and take photos of the store.

I am glad we said yes.

Please go to the link below and see why.

And once you are at the blog - have a good look around, vintage style and talent shine!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


Customers are such fun.

When these two started playing with the steampunk wares and taking photos we didn't mind at all - as long as we got a photo to put on the blog.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Have you seen Madame Brussels?

If you have found your way to our little shop lately, you may have noticed our new front window display.

Madame Brussels is on display, advertising our new collection of pocket sized books from Arcade Publications, right here in Melbourne.

We stock the following titles, each one a pocket history on an amazing part of Melbourne.

- EW Cole: Chasing the Rainbow.
- MacRobertsonland.
- Madame Brussels: This Moral Pandemonium
- Making Modern Melbourne

They make great gifts if you want to give someone a little part of Melbourne.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Little finds

Sometimes you get a few things in without having had proper time to have a real close look at them, and when you do have a closer look - you make some amazing discoveries. Like the old trunk we got on the weekend.

The trunk itself is beautiful, all old wood with a patterned paper finish, but it is this label on the side of the trunk that makes it special.

Anyone who stocked velocipedes is worth researching in my book. I have looked into the history of Eastern Arcade in Melbourne, the building no longer exists as it was knocked down a couple of years ago - but it seems it was rather notorious in its heyday.

Must have been all those velocipedes...

Monday, June 27, 2011

Positive press

Not that we want to brag...

But WOW - we got good press in the online broadsheet.

(And the shop looks great in the photos too).

Meanwhile - our customers are loving the range of goods, we are getting in new old stuff and some old new stuff (just to balance things) and Cliff is busy making more ray guns to meet our many clients specific world domination needs.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Now in stock

Our first four days of trading have been busy with over two hundred people through the doors and plenty of interest (and plenty of sales).

We have a good stock of assorted bobbins in now, very popular little decorative items (almost as popular as our selection of old souvenir tea spoons from all over the world).

And we have added some 'green' to the store to liven it up a bit (can't be all rusty metal and old wood).

And finally, we have set up a Face Book 'like' page - just trying to keep up with 21st Century marketing and webvertising!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Open for business

We are now open!

Tanya swung open the big rusty door at 10 this morning and soon after that, Marco from Umberto's (three doors up and fantastic coffee!) wandered in and became the shops first customer.

I need to get my self busy making more interesting steampunk devices as we have already had several people call in looking for such wares, so more goggles, ray guns, books on steampunk and general doo-dads will be in the steampunk section very soon.

It is a great feeling to finally be open after the time we have spent renovating, decorating, moving house, sourcing stock, displaying stock, etc...

Oh - and keep an eye out in The Age this weekend, there is an article on steampunk with some photos of our wares (on the models).

Thursday, June 9, 2011

The signage is up

And the opening date has been set - we will begin trading at 10.00am on Thursday 16th June.

Another full day for Tanya and I getting the shop ready, Today Mitch came over with the signs so we put them up, I like the lettering on the window - very classy.

Tanya was busy all day stocking shelves and pricing items, I got the ugly air conditioner pipes covered over with a big plastic pipe, and I made some shelves out of old timber and put them up.

Just got a couple of pieces of display furniture to find (old bookcases are not all that common) and a couple more lights to put up and we are set.

So we are now less than a week away from opening!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Close to opening now...

We are back from our sunny break and busy in the store getting it ready for the opening.

Good news was waiting for us when we got back, we now have our second hand dealers licence so we can trade. The plan is to have a 'soft open' on Friday 17th June and trade for three days, then have an official opening the following week.

The signage goes up tomorrow!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

The door to the future

Well, we spent the weekend alternating between unpacking our belongings into our rooms above the shop, with working in the shop on the last bit of painting and fixing up of things.

The big change was to our front door. We decided to keep the original door for a while, rather than replace it with a new one. So we needed it to look a bit industrial...

Yes, that is real rust on a timber door.

I have used Porter's Paints 'Liquid Iron' base and 'Instant Rust' finish to rust paint all sorts of things in the past, so I knew it would work well on our door. The nice thing is that it will keep changing as it slowly rusts some more.

Then we got creative.

I raided my parts bins and found an old machine wheel for the door handle, and an old pressure gauge to decorate the door. The inside of the door has an old crank handle as the internal door handle.

All of this using old found junk, so it will show people what can be done with the sort of stuff we will sell.

Only one thing to do - get 810 back on the door so people can find us!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

We live here

Well, we are now officially 'in' the building. We moved all our belongings in upstairs on Tuesday this week and we are mostly unpacked and sorted.

The store is looking almost crowded with stock, which is great because we thought we may not have enough to fill it. We hope to start on the weekend, laying out stock and making it all look good on display and ready for customers.

So it is starting to feel real now...

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Inside the shop

It has been a very busy week or so, beginning with two coats of gloss black on the shop floor last Friday, followed by the beginning of the big move.

Now we can see the retail space taking shape. We finally found a suitable bench for a shop counter (a timber kit wooden workbench via eBay), and we have also found some more exciting big pieces for the store (wait until you see the butchers scales!).

So Tanya and I are busy packing this week, ready to move out of our home and in to our new home above the shop - the big move is next Tuesday so we will do our first blog post from the shop next week.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011


To be honest - I do not enjoy painting, but Tanya seems to love it!

I mean - this photo is at the end of two days straight of sanding, cutting in, rolling, second coats, cleaning up, etc, etc - and Tanya is still smiling. Says a lot for how happy the shop is going to be.

In other news - a steampunk friend of mine in the UK has just sent me artwork for our promotional postcards, so I will be handing them out at an event this Saturday night to drum up some interest in the store.

Finally - Friday will see the last of the painting ( I hope) and then we can start to move stuff in.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Our first supplier

The manufactory is proud to now be the Australian stockist of firehouse moustache wax.

We decided that the steampunk corner needed quality moustache wax for sale, and being a firie I could not go past firehouse moustache wax. John and Kristine from firehouse moustache wax have been wonderful, they have already boxed up our first order and sent it on its way to us, and they are advertising our store on their website!

Wend your way to for more on wax.

Meanwhile - Easter was spent travelling to Adelaide and back and filling the car with stock from the many antique stores we visited. We managed to fill the 'family truckster' to the limit.

So - back to renovating the store, Peter our fantastic electrician has finished the re-wiring and painting starts this week.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Walls come down - walls go up again

Ahh the fun of renovating a shop.

Saturday was well spent cladding the wall of the corner office, back room part of the store, as well as some fine filling and sanding work by our good friend and store sign writer Mitch. With only one piece of timber left to put up and a few spots to sand, we will be into the painting after easter.

Before we left the shop on Saturday, we did have time to instal our first window display, a big old funnel hanging in the window over an old cast iron outdoor table.

So now passers buy will peek in and wonder 'what sort of store sells old funnels and tables?

Ours of course!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

First stock delivery

Well, the old walls are down, the new wall frames are up, there is a huge pile of rubbish to be removed on Saturday, some of the holes in the walls have been patched...

... and the very first of our stock found its way to us last night, delivered to the store!

We are getting to know our neighbours too. Umberto Espresso is only a few doors up and already a great place for coffee, food and big Peroni beers. And a few other folk have stopped by to see what we are up to.

I think we are going to enjoy life on the High Street.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Two days with a hammer

It is amazing what you can do in a couple of days when you need to smash things apart. Here in the above photo is our new shop, looking all nice and quiet from the street, meanwhile inside...

Nathan and Cliff are busy ripping out internal walls, suspended ceilings, disconnected wiring, timber flooring, carpet, plaster, etc, etc...

The find of the day was the concrete ramp into the store under the timber steps, yay - we are pram friendly!

Another couple of days like the last two and we shall have a big empty store space ready to patch and paint.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Day one...

This is the story of a little shop in Thornbury, Victoria, Australia called the manufactory.

A small clean space, full of light.

A place where you will find old industrial artefacts, botanical curiosities, scientific ephemera, collectable kitchenalia, strange repurposed devices and the odd bit of steampunk - all artfully displayed and all for sale.

So - day one.

We got the keys after work today. We walked up the hill to the shop, looking at life in the High Street along the way. As soon as we got there and opened up, we got the power on at the meter box and started poking around. It might be a small space but there is a whole lot of work to be done, and starting tomorrow with the demolition tools, we start to create the retail space we want.

The plan is to open for business in June, not sure of the date yet but we will be letting you know.