June 10 2019 by Rosie Bristed
I have struggled with the idea of opening my own shop in the Queenstown Lakes area for a while now. I moved to Arrowtown from Wellington two years ago, yet in that time retail rents have continued to hike. My business, Rosie Flowers, provides flowers for weddings and events and more recently, daily orders. Battling to find a suitable and affordable space, not an uncommon problem for young business owners like me, I trialed selling flowers through cafes. Between November and Christmas, peonies flew out the door faster than I could get them in there. Encouraged, I began putting bouquets and other cut flowers in to Provisions of Arrowtown. But the pleasant warm interior of most cafés unfortunately contributes to a shorter life span in flowers.
Desperate to find my own space and sick of combining home and work and online business, I nearly made a couple of rash decisions with terrifying hundred-thousand-dollar commercial leases. Thankfully, I managed to keep this urge under control. And now, I think I’ve found a practical solution. Rosie Flowers has ‘popped up’ in a number of complementary businesses, supplying attractive indoor plants and pots for sale. While flowers will sell at the right time of the year (Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, Easter, Christmas, etc), indoor plants have become a huge part of interior styling, everywhere. I grow a lot of my own flowers and have always enjoyed ‘leafy stuff’, happily propagating what I can here in the harsher climate. With the surge of popularity in indoor plants, I felt this was an obvious addition to my floral business, with the added bonus that plants are significantly less perishable and equally as pleasant to have around.
The best part about this scenario of taking up residence in other shops, is that it’s not just good for me, it’s good for them too. It adds to the appeal of the space and any other goods that are on display. It’s also about maintaining a sense of realism in this age of ‘online’ everything. I think people still like to see the real thing and experience shopping in ‘real time’. Adding my beautiful plants to other people’s shops just seemed like a good idea. While every plant has been chosen especially to suit the climate here, they still have their own individual requirements for light and water. Each pop-up-shop displays plants that are suited to the natural light and temperature of that site. I view my pop-ups as carefully curated living exhibitions and because of the range of sites, serve a greater number of people at no cost of my own. Win-win!
Current Rosie Flowers pop-ups: Nemo Bridal and Couture, Provisions of Arrowtown, Seletti Concept Stores
Rosie Bristed, rosieflowers.co.nz