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Home Stories: Laurence Kain

Ashley Feraude and Cass Atkinson

A few hours before heading to Laurence’s place, I got a message reading, “You know my house is pretty basic, right? I just don’t want you to be disappointed. There will be beer of course.”

I responded by explaining this HerCanberra feature is just as much about him as it is his house—and then I saw my golden opportunity to add, “look, just make sure you have an Imperial Russian stout ready for me and I’ll add some Photoshop magic.”

Of course, I’ve never Photoshopped any of these photos (aside from that one time when I stacked it outside just prior to the shoot and ended up with a green grass stain on my jeans). But I was being entirely truthful when I said that these stories are about the people of Canberra, not only the dwellings in which they reside. So, Laurence—being the founder of Capital Brewing Co and quite the popular personality of our city—clearly had nothing to worry about.

I’ve known Laurence for a long time. While we’ve always been friends, I struggle to keep up with his immense outdoor fascination (think: back country skiing, rock climbing, hiking, canyoning, surfing, mountain climbing, just to name a few).

Nevertheless, we’ve caught up regularly over the years to check in, try some tightrope walking (once), have me beat him at squash (always) and, more recently, have puppy play dates at the local Downer Oval. For the record, my puppy is much faster than his (if you sense there is a level of friendly competitiveness between us, then yes, you would be right).

After Laurence greeted me at the door with the usual “nice car Ashley, do they make them for men?” type comment, Cass and I were welcomed into his cozy home, which he shares with his partner May, teenager Pia, toddler Lily and doggie Ravi.

Looking at the natural wood, classic appliances, comfy lounge and open spaces, it became very apparent that Laurence has a down-to-earth attitude towards home living.

The home is warm, fueled by the dry wood fire and filled with the smell of roasting chestnuts. Being a barman and, more recently, a beer brewer, it’s no surprise that the moment Cass and I walked in to the kitchen, wine and pale ales were popped open. Only then did we start talking about his home and why he hasn’t had as much time to put into it as he would like.

Laurence has always been a busy guy—from managing Trinity Bar, then Hippo, then Candy Bar, to co-founding Foreshore Music Festival, then owning Honkytonks and Hippo & Co, to ultimately being one of the legends behind the success story that is Capital Brewing Co.

The brewing venture is more than a full-time job, so little projects here and there are taking a back seat for now. But, then again, he did just finish completely redoing the floorboards throughout the entire house so, yes, if you want something done, ask a busy person.

Usually our visits for these Home Stories features take about 30 minutes, but our chat with Laurence went on for hours (and at some point, Cass’ phone rang because her husband and daughter wanted to know if they still had a mummy). And then it hit me, this ever-humble host turned our visit into an opportunity to look after us.

Laurence’s home is not about things; it is about experiences, connections and memories—and his house is abundant in those. Pictures of family, artworks by friends (such as a Luke Chiswell piece), children’s drawings, and May’s wedding bouquet hanging from the ceiling are all testament to that idea that life at home should be simple, celebrated and genuine.

And for those wondering—yes, I could beat him at Squash if I wanted to, but he is such a nice guy that I might just let him win again next time.






Read all of Ashley’s Home Stories series here and read about Canberra Centre’s home wares haven here.

Home Stories is brought to you in partnership with Canberra Centre

Photography by Cass Atkinson


Ashley Feraude

Ashley Feraude is a creative consultant, music producer and man-about-town. Under his Sound Technique agency, he provides award-winning consultancy services ranging from branding design, creative content development and event music direction for events and hospitality venues. Under the alias Magnifik, he produces award-winning original music filled with electronic soul and performs melodic DJ sets at numerous night spots, events and festivals. And if that wasn’t enough, Ashley is also the author of this insightful interior design editorial series. So is he suffering from split personality disorder and has an obsession over pointy awards? Not really...he just loves design, music and getting an insight into people’s personalities. Plus he likes being really busy. More about the Author


Cass Atkinson

Cass Atkinson is a photographer who loves shooting weddings & families when she's not shooting interiors & architecture. She’s equal parts homebody and adventurer who loves curling up with a book as much as a trip to somewhere new. She values authenticity, cheeky humour, unexpected details, doesn’t take herself too seriously, and the jam doughnut addiction runs deep. She’s a born & raised Canberra native and her hobbies include collecting vintage cameras & being sassed by her threenager. More about the Author

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