A COUPLE have spent 27 years building their own floating man-made island home, growing their own food and building their own supplies.
The project started with a small float home that was built using wood that had washed ashore after a storm and an old fishing kit.
Wayne and Catherine moved into the cove in 1992 and have been building their self-sufficient home ever since.
“When we first started, the first thing of course was to have a roof over our head,” Catherine told the FLORB YouTube channel.
“So we built the house which was half the size of what it is now.”
Over more than two decades, they’ve gradually added new buildings, greenhouses, and an outdoor dance floor.
Now, the couple created a fully off-grid, floating homestead where they can grow most of their own food and earn a living as artists.
Catherine explained how the island has a secure armoured Styrofoam base that can last a lifetime and how Wayne’s engineering skills makes the entire environment stay put even in harsh weather conditions.
“The metal-based systems also make it better for us in terms of durability when we have storms,” she said.
“Wayne has us tied into shore with big ropes in a spiderweb formation, so when we get hit by the wind, we move back and forth all in one piece rather than the buildings bumping against each other.”
Wayne revealed his inspiration to live off the land but don’t disturb local biodiversity.
“I was inspired by birds. They’re the ones that grown and build nests without permission,” Wayne revealed.
“I use the materials around me, whatever was here, recycled, to do this.
“Most of what I’ve done here has come through trade and my labour.”
Catherine explained that nature was her inspiration behind her ideal lifestyle.
“My dream was to live out and to grow my own food to live as self-sufficiently as possible and living in the rhythms of nature,” she said.
The couple contemplated on whether to carry on with the ambitious project or not, as they admitted to be consuming overall.
“We’re a team on this project. We both agreed and talked to each other about what we wanted to do for a short period of time.
“After 10 years we look at each other and decide whether we wanted to keep doing it or not.
“It takes all your money, all your time and everything you have to do it.
“So now we’re 27 years at it and enjoying how it’s going.”
Catherine revealed how she and Wayne talked about it the first day they met.
They started off by swapping homes with a friend and stayed in their cabin.
Catherine, a passionate dancer, immediately went on to build a dance floor so she could show off her moves.
Her garden was one of the biggest expansions in the island.
Having started off as a salad garden, it now takes over several floats and four greenhouses.
“I can now pretty much grow everything I want,” Catherine said.
The couple went on to build their own gallery to showcase their beloved artwork instead of displaying it in nearby towns.
“Seeing water, incredible forests and wildlife all around me and seeing the beauty of what we’ve created to add to that is just an incredible thing to wake up to,” Catherine admitted.
“I can’t imagine living any other way.
“We live in the rhythm of the moon and the tide, and not to the rhythms of corporate and business, and that is vital to me.
“Our dream is to live here until the end of our days.”