Enterprising international couple fund way around country

00:03, May 16 2014
Eva Molenaar
CRAFT WORK: Hawera is the latest stop for Eva Molenaar and Barry Grimes while on their overseas adventure. The couple are funding their trip by making and selling full circle scarves.

A creative money-making scheme to fund their travel adventures has turned into a fledgling business for one international pairing.

The latest pit-stop for Barry Grimes and Eva Molenaar is Hawera.

The couple, who are staying on a South Taranaki farm, make and sell full circle scarves out of quality second-hand material that they either find or are given.

Molenaar said people really liked the fact the accessory had been up-cycled.

"It's taking a product, like a sweater, that nobody wants, that you transform into something new that somebody wants to buy," she said.

Because of this, each scarf was unique and often included a detail, like a tag or a pocket feature, from the item that was up-cycled.


Grimes, who hails from Dublin, is in charge of the sewing machine while Molenaar is responsible for the pattern and design of each creation.

Grimes said their product had been well received around New Zealand at different market stalls they had run. "There's no one else that sells this type of idea," the 22-year-old said.

Grimes, who studied business at university, said they had sold about 80 of their designs since they started making them two months ago. Each scarf costs $25.

They are investigating setting up a regular stall in New Plymouth and are heading to Whanganui this Saturday to peddle their wares.

Molenaar, who has a fine arts degree, said the support they had received from people around New Zealand during their travels had helped them a lot.

"They go out of their way to help us," the Dutch 27-year-old said. The couple, who met in Australia, would like to live in New Zealand and have applied for residency.

Having already seen a lot of the country, they now plan to base themselves in Hawera for a few months to focus on developing their enterprise. And although they both see a lot of potential with what they are doing, it is also something they both enjoyed too.

For more information email fullcirclescarves@gmail.com.

Taranaki Daily News