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Julie and Stephen Wightman.

By John Keast

Julie met Stephen in The Triangle.

She was the artist, he the musician and budding artist.

She came to see his work – and they got married.

Now they are back: Julie the artist and art teacher, Stephen the musician and, picking up old skills, the baker.

Together in The Triangle, they have created Ge Harashim, a Hebrew word meaning Valley of the Craftsmen.

It was chosen because they will ply their crafts in the store, which doubles as a bakery (it has a commercial kitchen), a music store and outlet for ethically-made crafts.

In spring, organic vegetables grown at a family farm at Mt Somers will be added.

The organic flour used for the baking – Stephen worked at Countdown and the long-gone Netherby hot bread shop – comes from Julie’s parents’ bio-grains business, and to add to the Ashburton/Triangle connection, Julie’s great grandparents had a store in The Triangle.

groceries.

Julie said their passion was good quality products “produced with love and skill and fairly priced to benefit the craftsman and the consumer”.

As such, fair-trade clothing is also sold, and they welcomed inquiries from crafts people who produced ethical products.

Says Julie: “We both bake. Stephen’s a baker by trade, but I do a bit of experimental cooking. I’m passionate about healthy food and healthy eating. I love nutrition and health.

She said their vision was always to have a store combining food and music and art.

She said their were passionate about helping people enhance their skills and encourage people to find what their real passion is.

“We’d love to help people who are crafting their products well. We have a big vision for it and we are here to stay.”

Julie said they were starting small, with Stephen teaching music, and them both producing additive-free baking.