This website uses cookies to improve your experience navigating our site. By continuing to browse, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

OK, I understand

Dust Merchants

Creative People

Most siblings are pretty used to sharing. Clothes, genetics and jokes about your parents are one thing, but Alice and Laura McIntosh also share a business!

Born out of a childhood of creativity, the sisters create one-off, sculptural marble side-tables under the name Dust Merchants.

30th November, 2017

Alice and Laura McIntosh in their Brunswick studio. Photo – Caitlin Mills.

These quirky, unique tables are inspired by family memories. Photo – Caitlin Mills.

Alice fixing the steel legs to the marble top. Photo – Caitlin Mills.

The cute sister duo! Photo – Caitlin Mills.

All Dust Merchant side tables use repurposed marble off cuts. Photo – Caitlin Mills.

Sally Tabart
Thursday 30th November 2017

‘Mum was always saving us things that we could make crafts out of, like nice cardboard, weird packaging or gumnuts,’ Alice McIntosh, one half of the Dust Merchants sister-duo tells us. ‘I think her resourcefulness has taught us to think creatively about the materials we use.’ 

Out of their studio in Brunswick (which doubles as Alice’s art studio), the sisters repurpose marble offcuts attached elegantly atop steel legs to create their playful and totally unique pieces. ‘I always enjoy the reveal of flipping the table over and seeing it suddenly become a form,’ Alice says.

Coming from backgrounds in art (Alice) and acting (Laura), the siblings find their inspiration in family memories, rather than a studied craft. ‘We see them as “occasional tables” – a name that came from our Nana Joy’, explains Laura, ‘Our Nana had a marble washstand growing up. When she was in her later life, our Parpy cut it up and made two “occasional tables” out of the stone,’ Alice adds.

As motivated and high achieving as each other, both girls are also at the helm of other incredibly successful creative ventures! Alice is the co-director of the clothing brand Sister Studios (makers of all things fun, flirty and flared!), whereas Laura has been working professionally in acting (and more recently screenwriting) in film and TV for the last seven years. Sisters are doin’ it for themselves!

You can catch the Dust Merchant sisters in real life TONIGHT alongside other TDF faves at the Studio Local Night Market. 25 Albert Street, Northcote from 5pm to 9pm.

View Comments

Similar Stories

Art

Maddie Sharrock · 'Future Relief'

Maddie Sharrock of Studio Twocan unveils her solo art practice with an exhibition opening in Melbourne this week.
Elle Murrell

Creative People

James Walsh · Igneous

We take a look at a brilliant graduation project, utilising a by-product of bluestone cutting to forge stunning modern lights.
Elle Murrell

TDF Open House 2017

Tantri Mustika Ceramics

One of our favourite discoveries of 2017 - see Tantri Mustika's terrazzo-inspired creations at The Design Files Open House this week!
Sally Tabart

This Week

Stays

The Most Dreamy Getaway Spots Of 2021

From beach shacks on Stradbroke Island to a Blue Mountains weekender that floats among the clouds, these are the hottest holiday spots of la...

Homes

The Top Five Apartments Of 2021!

From a tree-top art deco flat filled to an interior designer’s personalised Bondi pad, these are our favourite apartments of the year!

Studio Visit

The Graduate Designer Pushing The Limits Of Traditional Furniture Design

Brigitte Owers-Buccianti is the designer behind Real Non-Real, an exciting new practice making multi-functional furniture pieces.

Architecture

9 Outrageously Beautiful Australian Coastal Homes

From humble shacks, to architectural masterpieces, these are our favourite beachside homes of 2021!

Food

The Tastiest Recipes Of 2021

From savoury galettes to triple tiered vanilla sponges with craem and lemon curd, these are our five most popular recipes of last year.

News

Save Soho Rose Farm!

Donate to help save Victoria’s most beautiful field-grown roses, after a devastating hail storm. 

News

Ring In The New Year With A Massive DOMO Sale!

DOMO are bringing in the new year with up to 50% off major international brands.
Sponsored

Homes

Designer Anna Spiro’s Heavenly Island Home

The celebrated interior designer shares her relaxed yet luxurious Minjerribah/North Stradbroke holiday house.

Creative People

Seven Standout Emerging Creatives of 2021

Discovering talented new creatives is our favourite thing we do – here are the artists, designers and makers who got us talking in 2021.

Tiny Homes

The Most Inspiring Tiny Homes Of 2021

From converted shipping containers to prefabricated dwellings available for purchase, these were our favourite tiny houses of 2021.

Family

Artist Miranda Skoczek On Single Parenting, Smelling The Roses + Spontaneity

Artist Miranda Skoczek shares her multigenerational family life in the Dandenongs with son Harper and aunt Margaret.

On The Market

The Perfect Mid-Century, NSW South Coast Beach House Is For Sale

This mid-century Mollymook Beach house is perfect in its proportions, feel and water views... and it's on the market!
Amelia Barnes
  18 hours ago

Gardens

Heide Museum’s Enchanting New Healing Garden

Heide Museum of Modern Art opens a new healing garden – a therapeutic space to benefit the mind, soul, and body.

Creative People

Creating Original, Ever-Changing Gardens With Kep Horticulture’s Andy Kepitis

Kep Horticulture founder Andy Kepitis talks how to create dynamic gardens, and his aversion to 'certain' plant palettes!

Food

Julia's Herby Prawn Mayo Sandwiches

Julia Busuttil Nishimura serves up the ultimate summer sanga. YUM!
Julia Busuttil Nishimura

Similar Stories

Art

Maddie Sharrock · 'Future Relief'

Maddie Sharrock of Studio Twocan unveils her solo art practice with an exhibition in Melbourne.
Elle Murrell

Creative People

James Walsh · Igneous

We take a look at a brilliant graduation project, utilising a by-product of bluestone cutting.
Elle Murrell

TDF Open House 2017

Tantri Mustika Ceramics

One of our favourite discoveries of 2017 - see Tantri Mustika's terrazzo-inspired creations at The Design Files Open House this week!
Sally Tabart

The Design Files acknowledge the traditional custodians of the lands on which we work, the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to Elders past and present.

First Nations artists, designers, makers and creative business owners are encouraged to submit their projects for coverage on The Design Files – we would love to hear from you.

Please email us here.