By Josh Gibbon
Bringing you coffee and a laugh: the dress up trend that’s catching on in Lalor Park
Last month, Natt and Gabi, managers of Common Groundz Community Café, were feeling a bit jealous of those working at home wearing their pyjamas every day.
“We’d been in two weeks of lockdown, and when it extended, we found ourselves thinking, ‘Everyone else gets to wear PJs to work! That’s not fair! We want to, too!’,” Nat said. “We had just missed World Pyjama Day, so we said, ‘Next week, we’re wearing PJs to work!’”
As Natt and Gabi donned their finest pyjamas to make coffees that week, they were surprised how much their customers loved it. Some even joined in and wore their own pyjamas on their coffee run.
The response got Natt and Gabi thinking, and they decided they wouldn’t stop at pyjamas.
“The shops were all shut, so we just started making themes from the fun clothes we had at home!” Natt said.
Their creativity led to a dress-up themed day each week. So far, they’ve had Tutu Tuesday, Wacky Wednesday, Throw Back Thursday (80s theme), and Formal Friday. They’ve been announcing the category on social media early in the morning, and customers joined in.
“Customers would walk in and just start laughing. It gave them something to look forward to each week,” Natt reflected. “Some came with their ’80s rock shirts on for Throw Back Thursday. On Formal Friday, one man wore a tie, and another joined in with a suit jacket over a t-shirt and jeans.”
Nat and Gabi’s initiative has been an interesting experiment in hope-making. They realised that by simply initiating a joyful moment for others to look forward to, they’ve been able to give people hope in lockdown. “A lot of our customers don’t necessarily see anyone else. We get to be here for them to get a coffee and have a conversation in a COVID-safe way.”
Amidst the fun, Natt and Gabi have been strong advocates for COVID-safe precautions in the community. They have been handing out free face masks, lending tables to other businesses for outdoor check-ins, and reminding customers to follow the guidelines.
Gabi shared that her commitment to safety was prompted by losing her father in Tasmania to COVID-19 last year, without being able to visit him at the time. She said, “Because this hit so hard so early on for us, we realise how big of an effect this has [on people’s lives].”
Gabi and Natt don’t plan to slow down their dress-up themes even though they’ve run out of fun clothes at home. They’ve ordered their get-up online for this week, themed ‘Fit, Fab and Fluro Friday’.
For more information on the ministry of Common Groundz Community Café and to follow their dress-up trend on Facebook, check out the links below.
More Info HERE.