A Rural Awakening: Daylesford Longhouse

Photography by Phillip Huynh

We first featured Daylesford Longhouse in Elevated Plains, Central Victoria on the IN BED Journal in 2020 - a working farm, cookery school, residence & environmental project under one 110 metre long roof. Today we revisit this magical place and its founders, Ronnen Goren & Trace Streeter (in the company of their two dogs, three cows, two pigs, eleven goats and Elton-John the buck) to ruminate on its beginnings and where it stands today, over 10 years on from inception. A place committed to reviving time-honoured techniques, it has become a blueprint for how we can best sustain ourselves. Captured through the brilliant eye of long-time IN BED collaborator & photographer, Philip Huynh we unravel the Longhouse story and their inspiring journey towards complete self-sufficiency. 

Ronnen's nephew Mico wears IN BED Kids Sleepwear Set in Grey & White Stripe. Inside, the table is set with a collection of Tablecloths in Natural.

On Ronnen & Trace’s home…

We have been living here for 10 years, not including the process of purchasing and building the house, which in itself took more than 3 years. The incredible beauty that we are surrounded with – working with Partners Hill on the architecture & interiors – was the best investment we made. I don’t think in the entire time we have been living here, that I ever tire of it.

I don’t think in the entire time we have been living here, that I ever tire of it.

The bedroom showcases a combination of IN BED Linen in Mist & Lake blue & a 100% Linen Quilted Bed Cover in Lake.

It doesn’t hurt that we are blessed with the most amazing view, and with such proximity to nature and the seasons, you can always be drawn in by the change in beauty and environment. The house, and its unique distribution of program across the 110 metres, has such an array of different spaces to engage with and enjoy; each with their own unique character.

On their favourite room in the house…

Aside from the Garden Kitchen, our Loft space that we live in would have to be one of our favourites for a number of reasons. The space has an ‘other-like’ quality due to the rose gold and musk pink finish to the space. Through all times of day it has a beautiful warmth that has a certain levity to it; even at night where it feels somewhat cosmic.

The position of the day-bed and lounge allows you to float in the landscape, with the amazing horizontal picture window always present in the room. Viewed from the bed it makes waking up in the morning a delight.

On the Longhouse journey: what has happened since we last visited...

We have been busy, and in continuing our quest to be off-grid and self-sufficient we have installed our solar shed and a poly tunnel and have really focused on developing our flower-picking garden. We have also transitioned from Jersey Cows to the most gorgeous Anglo Nubian Goats. We now have a flock of twelve, and I have been working on developing our cheese making skills. We continue to run classes, and have had some amazing presenters including; Holly Davis, a macrobiotic chef, Troy from Meatsmith, Michael James baker extraordinaire and Natalie Paul from Beatrix, as well as Kathy Tasples from Sweet Greek.”

In continuing our quest to be off-grid and self-sufficient we have installed our solar shed and a poly tunnel and have really focused on developing our flower-picking garden.

A striking centrepiece created by installation artist, Hattie Molloy foraged entirely from the Longhouse gardens. On the right sits a stack of IN BED 100% Linen Pillowslips in Cocoa & Chestnut.

On recent projects…

Over the past while, I have become fascinated with indigo, and we were fortunate to run a class with the Heather Thomas from Wild Heather. It was amazing to learn the process of making the natural dye from plant to a dye bath and the various processes in creating patterns. It became obsessive. Since then, we have been seed saving and looking to see if we can create our own dye based on harvesting the leaves of the indigo plant.”

Layers of Chestnut & Cocoa cover a low lying bed with a view of the Longhouse grounds.

On the draw to Daylesford…

Daylesford and all the region had to offer was always a stand out. We could live one-and-a-half hours from Melbourne and never have to compromise our lifestyle. Fortunately for us the food offering was always rich, and we are blessed with great choice. We also have two great regional galleries in Bendigo and Ballarat. With an inclusive culture it remains a place we feel blessed to have everything (and more) in terms of connection to the world around us and nature, whilst not having to compromise on all the other things that enrich life – family, friends, food and culture.”

On their favourite local haunts…

Ever since we moved to the area the Sunday Market at the train-station have always been a constant – whether for food, bric-a-brac or the odd plant or two. Recently, the Castlemaine Market with the Mill, a great bakery, small goods & chocolatier, is somewhere we have put back on the picking circuit. But places like Maldon, Ballarat and Kyneton have some of our favourite wares and collectibles in Oaklane & Co (Kyneton), Vintage 216 (Ballarat), Found at Hepburn (Daylesford) and Acorn Wood (Maldon).”

On looking forward…

We have managed to find Longhouse’s equilibrium, with our systems honed and life balanced. We are currently renovating a Roy Grounds apartment – Quamby 1941, again with Partners Hill, which is exciting. And we have our eye on another project conversion of an old mechanics workshop, which may still be a little way off, but has so much amazing potential.”

 Cool shades of Lake, Dove Grey & White make a crisp & refreshing bedding combination.



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