At home with | Flowers Vasette

Iconic Fitzroy Florist

Looking for creative inspiration? Look no further – we’ve chatted with some of our talented and creative collaborators and asked them a few questions about their careers and how we can get creative at home. Meet our second ‘At Home With’ guest, Melbourne based florist Cherrie Miriklis and her wonderfully creative team at Flowers Vasette.

Flowers Vasette opened in 1989 on Brunswick Street, Fitzroy. Over 30 years, Flowers Vasette has become the largest floral and events business of its kind in Australia.

Founded by Cherrie Miriklis, the epiphany of one day opening a flower shop grew whilst she was young, selling flowers after school outside her parents’ grocery store. 

Today Flowers Vasette is one of the most highly regarded and recognised florists in Melbourne, showcasing a stunning array of diverse and unique flowers, plants and colour! The Big Group and Flowers Vasette have worked side by side and in collaboration with each other for almost three decades, so we are incredibly proud to showcase them as part of our ‘At Home With’ series.

WHAT’S BEEN THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR CAREER?

It’s hard to choose one particular highlight over so many years. However, a particularly special highlight has been the purchase of our garden property ‘Beechmont Retreat’ located in magical Olinda. With beautiful 10 acre gardens we have the joy of being able to grow special flower and foliage varieties for exclusive use at Flowers Vasette.

Another memorable highlight has been the privilege to create major floral installations for The National Gallery of Victoria’s Gala Events, working closely with their creative team.

WHO OR WHAT INSPIRES YOU?

We find inspiration in the ever changing seasons and the beginning of each brings a new bounty of produce that keeps us inspired. Music, art, design, fashion, colour and texture all play a role in keeping the team inspired. 

Our customer’s voices as well and their beautiful messages – that’s what’s inspiring me. If people are appreciative and grateful – that’s enough for me. I’ll work hard and do my darndest to get the best of the best.

TELL US ABOUT YOUR TEAM

The joy of working with a good team. Florists work super hard, so to have the support of a good team is really a blessing. We inspire each other creatively, and to have others who make you laugh, after working fourteen hour days, is absolute gold.

AT HOME HOW TO:
CREATE YOUR OWN FLORAL ARRANGEMENT
HOW HAVE YOU BEEN ABLE TO GET THROUGH THE UNEXPECTED EVENTS OF THE LAST FEW MONTHS WITH COVID-19 AND WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNED?

Luckily for Vasette, there are different parts to our business – we have retail, online and events. Obviously we had to relook at that model – all of a sudden we started to get these cancellations of events and we realised a huge part of our income each week would be gone. I said ‘okay, what are we going to do about that?’

Luckily for Vasette, there are different parts to our business – we have retail, online and events. Obviously we had to relook at that model – all of a sudden we started to get these cancellations of events and we realised a huge part of our income each week would be gone. I said ‘okay, what are we going to do about that?’

During the March season we had up to 50 people employed, so we had to regroup. Some people have chosen to step down and be with their families, but there were others that really wanted to work. Flowers were no longer going to be our main source of income, so we had to diversify. We had to innovate. We had to think about what’s important to our customers right now – and that was putting food on the table.

All I could hear was that the supermarkets were running out of things, there was a lack of this or that in the fruit shops, and I thought, well that’s what I’m good at. That’s where my roots come from. As a greengrocer’s daughter, I was trained to know what good produce looks like. Luckily my husband used to be a Coles buyer so he knows produce like the back of his hand as well, and I was able to be introduced straight away to the right people at the fruit and veg market.

It was a matter of finding that niche market to satisfy my customer. And it’s been a great education process for all my staff, as well as the customer.

I feel like I’m going back to basics. And now we’re a fruit shop! My Mum and Dad would be very proud of me. This has been what COVID-19 has brought me back to.

Luckily for Vasette, there are different parts to our business – we have retail, online and events. Obviously we had to relook at that model – all of a sudden we started to get these cancellations of events and we realised a huge part of our income each week would be gone. I said ‘okay, what are we going to do about that?’

During the March season we had up to 50 people employed, so we had to regroup. Some people have chosen to step down and be with their families, but there were others that really wanted to work. Flowers were no longer going to be our main source of income, so we had to diversify. We had to innovate. We had to think about what’s important to our customers right now – and that was putting food on the table.

Check them out:
https://flowersvasette.com.au/
https://www.instagram.com/flowersvasette/

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