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BNE May/June 2015 |


Where to get your


Can You Keep A Secret?

619 Stanley Street, Woolloongabba

Retro Metro

297 Given Terrace, Paddington


Sunday Social

5d Winn Street, Fortitude Valley

Queensland Hot Rod Show

23 – 24 May

Brisbane Convention and Exhibition

Centre, corner Merivale and Glenelg

Streets, South Bank


Cooly Rocks On

29 May – 8 June

Queen Elizabeth Park, Coolangatta

and Tweed Heads

Collectorville Retro Fair

6 September

Rocklea Showgrounds

1430 Ipswich Road, Rocklea


Retro on the road

Memories of childhood are perhaps also behind

the success of vintage-style bikes. Reid Cycles

started selling vintage models three years ago

and the company has seen “exponential” growth

since then.

“When we began selling them it was a niche

market with little representation – the only

option was to fix up an old bike from eBay.

Now our most popular style is the ladies vintage

bike which sells at least twice as many as other

models,” says Reid’s marketing manager David

Hannay. Reid opened a second store in Brisbane

to meet demand.

Kris Cleary’s 1964 caravan, which she calls

The Best Little Vintage Van in Vegas, also

attracts attention on the streets of Brisbane.

Cleary used to be a regular at markets with her

bright red and pink caravan which often served

as a change room while she was selling vintage

clothes and trinkets. However, since her twins

were born the van is hired out as a bar, DJ booth

or photo booth for parties and weddings and

used as a prop for photoshoots, on television

and in local movies. Last year it was part of the

State Library’s exhibition, Hot Modernism. In

between it does double duty as a funky cubby

house for her now three-year-old toddlers.

Cleary also embraces vintage living, wearing

the clothes and surrounding herself with

homewares, believing she is doing her part for

the environment by recycling pre-loved items.

Her house is an eclectic mix of vintage, retro

and ‘repro’ with modern conveniences in their

midst and she also owns a pink 1967 classic car.

Peter Fritsch has been passionate about classic



the 1960s, spending countless hours

over decades restoring such beauties as a 1934

Chevrolet sedan, a ’34 Chevrolet coupe and a

1948 Ford Pilot, but the one he’s most proud

of is a replica he has built, literally, from the

ground up, piece by piece almost every weekend

for nine years – the 1932 Ford coupe that will

be on display at the Queensland Hot Rod Show

on 23 and 24 May at the Brisbane Convention

and Exhibition Centre. The bright yellow Ford

will be one of at least 120 original and modified

cars and motorbikes at the show, many of them

‘best in show’ trophy winners and some restored

from the 1920s.

Since he started showing his own cars more

than 40 years ago Fritsch says he now sees three

generations of fans attending, including his own

granddaughter who he likes to take with him

occasionally. “When I started we used to know

everyone’s name, all the wives and children, but

it’s too big now,” he says.

Like Kat Creasey and Matt Whalley, who also

love collecting and restoring cars, including the

one they drive daily, partners often share the

interest. Creasey caught the bug from her father;

Fritsch has a daughter who shares his interest

and a son-in-law who owns a hot rod; and Hot

Rod Show manager Katrina Martin grew up

with the cars and her father’s obsession before

meeting her like-minded husband. They have

just returned from showing one of their prized

cars, a 1957 Chevy Bel Air, in Sweden (which

will also be at the Brisbane show).

For Fritsch it’s the social spirit that he enjoys

with fellow car fanatics that he likes the most.

“[The Ford] is something I’ve always wanted

but it’s achieved so much more for us, going

to shows around the country, we’ve been

everywhere with it. There are no boundaries.

We have people in clubs from all walks of life.

We have swap meets where we swap parts and

we do ‘coffee runs’ where maybe 20 or 30 of us

will drive our cars somewhere for an outing. It

always attracts a lot of admirers.”

Story by Elisabeth Galvin and

Heather McWhinnie