Without a doubt, one of the best things about spring is the re-emergence of flowers, the vibrancy of the shrubberies and the returning green of the tree leaves. Local experts on the topic LouLou Moxom and Belinda Whitney, Canberra’s premier florists behind the Moxom + Whitney brand, share their knowledge on starting a business and thriving off being different.
How did you both get started in the florist business and why open up a shop in Canberra?
Lou: I’d grown up with a flower arranging mum and sister so for me it seemed a natural progression; I had a florist in Dickson years ago and Belinda used to come and visit me and have a play with the flowers. That’s where we discovered she had a real natural ability so of course – I made her go and do the floristry course, and the rest is history!
Belinda: We opened in Canberra because there was such a gap in the market for more natural and less structured florist. At that stage nobody were doing what we do – we’ve taken the nineties out of floristry!
What would you say has made your business so popular?
Because we did something new. As we mentioned, we were the first to bring this type of floristry to Canberra and Canberrans were so ready for a change, we were so embraced – it felt like we’d done the right thing at just the right time. I think we are also popular because of the way we interact with our customers – when you walk into our store you are our guests, part of the family – there is smiles, honesty, chit chat, music, love and of course amazing flowers and terrariums everywhere. We genuinely love what we do. That shows.
What tips would you give new business owners towards small business success?
Be prepared to have NO LIFE outside of your business. It will consume you and that’s good – the exhaustion will pay off. It’s old fashioned but if you work hard, like stupidly hard, your business will reward you. Never expect to succeed- success is a bonus…not a given, be able to be really critical with yourself and be humble.
What does the future look like for Moxom and Whitney?
We are establishing pop ups, growing relationships with national and international florists, we’ve purchased land to cultivate our own flowers and foliages, we have events and weddings that are so super cool it hurts AND you never know… a Moxom and Whitney florist may be opening up in a suburb near you soon!
Moxom + Whitney are located on the ground floor of the ORI Building at 55/30 Lonsdale Street in Braddon and make deliveries to Canberra. For further details visit their website here.