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My Interview with Creatives Ashdown and Bee

Ashdown and Bee

I first discovered the work of Ashdown and Bee at the Freedom Summer Launch a few months back and was instantly drawn to their design aesthetic. Little did I know, bespoke signage for media events was just one of the services the Stanmore-based business offers; styling, event planning, visual merchandising and more are what this creative couple excels at. They were even kind enough to make me my very own TLC sign during the interview (cue the girly squeels!).

I caught up with creative masterminds Simon Murray and Melissa Simonetta to discuss just what they offer, the bumps on the road to success and how they tmade the business a full time gig!

Ashdown and Bee - Number SignageAshdown and Bee - Love is sweet signAshdown and Bee - Guest Book Signage

The company started in 2012 after the couple’s separate jobs kept intertwining. 
“We soon had overlapping clients and were working together on many creative projects, thus we decided to join forces and create Ashdown & Bee!”

An unexpected curveball came early on.
“We took a nine month hiatus – after our very first month in business – as Simon was diagnosed with cancer, which put a hold on things for a while. But in February this year, he had recovered from treatment and surgery, and was back on his feet.  Since then, we have focused all our energy on Ashdown & Bee and creating work that truly showcases who we are and what we love”.

Their clients range from cafes and restaurants to advertisers, PR agencies and magazines, events and weddings and more!
“It’s really quite varied and open, but the one thing in common is they all appreciate creative artisan work, and are helping us revive the lost art of hand painting”.

Establishing their own studio in Stanmore recently has to be their fave assignment so far. 
We’re so excited to have a studio space (away from “home”) that we can make a creative mess in, but also a space for clients to come visit for meetings or to pick up signs or props. Setting it up and styling it, as well as doing signage on the front of the shop was probably the closest to our heart.

Ashdown and Bee - Sign MakingAshdown and Bee

Time management is a challenging part of the business.
“These days we find ourselves working non-stop (and having no social life!), but at the same time, we’re so lucky to be working so closely together every day, and also loving what we do and what we produce together”.

They put heart into every creation they produce.
“We work hard and aim to exceed expectations, whether it be providing a sign for an event or space, or styling an event. We always try to add an unexpected element, to leave a lasting impression but also create something visually pleasing”.

They’re always living The Life Creative!
We live, breathe and create constantly. Collectively we paint, draw, create, design and style every day – and love it!

Ashdown and Bee - Colourful Striped StrawsAshdown and Bee - Exterior Street SignAre you living The Life Creative sign - Ashdown and Bee

Simon Murray
Simon designs and creates hand painted signs and handwritten illustration as well as graffiti murals.

Melissa Simonetta
Melissa is a stylist for editorial and advertising photo shoots, does visual merchandising, interior consulting as well as designing and styling events and weddings.

Ashdown and Bee

Outside of writing this blog, Chris is an interior designer, presenter and author. He's also spent time on TV, on Channel 10's Changing Rooms, as well presenting segments on Channel 7's Sunrise and The Morning Show. If you'd like to book a design consult with Chris, you can find out more here


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