Six years ago, a couple set off in their campervan to find a beautiful site for a raw retreat. They didn’t find paradise, but they did go native, as Vicky Ewbank, one half of the dynamic duo, reveals to Lisa Clatworthy.
This is an excerpt from an article which appeared in the Spring 2013 issue of Get Fresh!
When I call to chat to Vicky Ewbank, director of Live Native, purveyors of pure, living skincare, she’s at home, with the dogs at her feet, making mayonnaise. Before sitting down to chat to me, she hands over the important task of completing the mayo to partner, Ian, and the dogs retreat to the fire.
Home for Vicky, Ian and their dogs is a cottage on the Isle of Skye, in the Highlands of Scotland. But the cottage isn’t just their home, it’s also the hub of their business, Live Native.
“It’s a real cottage industry,” Vicky reveals. “Actually, it’s how a lot of businesses start in the Highlands. Up here, if you want to do something you like you have to start it for yourself.”
Vicky and Ian found themselves back on Skye in 2007 – years after she’d originally moved to the island, aged 12, with her parents. After growing up there, she left to go to Edinburgh University and then moved south to London.
In London, Vicky forged a career in the healthcare industry. “I started out in a health food shop at 21,” she says. “I qualified as a homeopath in 1999 and I managed complementary health centres for many years. It was all about helping others to find health, if you like.
“You could say we’re extreme health seekers, me and Ian. I became vegetarian at a young age, then vegan and then about 10 years ago, raw vegan.”
During this time, Ian was working in the creative industries as a graphic artist. They didn’t initially give up their respective jobs with the aim of setting up their own raw skincare company though. “We really wanted to start a raw retreat,” Vicky explains. “We spent six months in a tiny campervan travelling around Europe. It was all very cramped; we just had this one blender. It was great. And the whole purpose of the trip was to find a place to live, to start our own raw business. We even looked in Panama and Australia, but we didn’t find where we wanted to be. So we went back to Skye where my parents were and where we’d left all our stuff.”
That was back in 2007 and it’s when Live Native was born.
To read more about how Vicky Ewbank created the successful Live Native brand order your spring issue of Get Fresh! here.
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