Monday 20 February 2012

    the flower room


    A beautiful discovery today was The Flower Room,

    a little shop full of fragrant flowers from local Hobart gardens.

    Staffed by local seniors who enjoy carrying on the shop’s tradition

    ~ the community spirit here made my heart sing!

    I sadly forgot my camera,  however this pic from feathers and cupcakes and Katrina’s note

    encapsulates the essence of the Flower Shop:

    These bunch of fragrant garden roses have been sitting on my table since Tuesday, when I bought them at a gorgeous little shop in Hobart called The Flower Room marketed with a great video production agency to get exposure. I love them so much I have been putting them on my bedside table at night so I can experience the beautiful fragrance as I’m drifting off to sleep …

    The Flower Room is a product of World War II that became a Hobart Institution. The shop was instigated in 1944 by the two Bailey sisters who lived at Runnymede House in Newtown.

    You’ll find blooms that are not always available at florist’s — bunches of perfumed roses, divine smelling sweet peas and intriguing exotic blooms. Fresh seasonal fruit and vegies are also available, along with golden-yolked free range eggs and Lucaston Park Apple Juice at a price as tempting as its taste.

    “We have one recently retired lady who joined the Flower Room in the 1940s. She is 95 later this year.”

    The story via ABC Radio :: When The Flower Room opened in Hobart nearly 65 years ago the planet was in the grip of World War II. The idea of shopping in a supermarket for produce and cut flowers was only just taking off in the U.S.A. and far from the minds of most Australians who were pre-occupied with the possibility of a Japanese invasion

    In order to assist the war effort a group of Hobart ladies got together and formed the Flower Room. The shop stocked flowers, vegetables, cakes and preserves with all the profits going towards assisting Australian troops on the front line.

    Today, The Flower Room Co-operative is a non-profit organisation for small fruit, vegetable and flower growers; local cooks, and craftspeople of all description.

    Despite the many changes the Flower Room has witnessed since 1944 the organisation still maintains the same community spirit it began with when the Allies needed all the help they could muster. It provides somewhere for the members to belong. Some of our members have been with us for over 40 years.

    Membership of the Flower Room is limited to 70 individuals who must each assist in the day to day running of the organisation by either volunteering their time in the shop front or providing produce for sale to customers.

    {Images via feathers and cupcakes; Lolita; & ABC RAdio 612}

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    Tuesday 11 October 2011

    Flower show garden delivering message on global poverty


    What a great innovative way to promote the important work of World Vision!

    A world in perfect balance can only be seen in the reflection.

    The International children’s charity World Vision UK teamed up with award-winning garden designers Flemons Warland Design to deliver a powerful message on global poverty through their garden at the Hampton Court Palace Flower Show. A large, reflective pond forms the garden’s centre piece, punctuated by two domes made from turf.

    The first dome, above the water, represents children who have access to essentials including food, healthcare and education. The second, inverted dome sinks below the water to represent children who have not.

    A world in perfect balance can only be seen in the reflection.

    The World Vision Garden is framed by a series of screens, giving visitors different views from every angle. At times the garden is totally obscured, at times partially and only one view allows visitors to see the full reflection. Based on the Japanese concept of ‘ma’, the spaces between the shapes and surfaces are just as important as the physical elements of the garden.

    John Warland, of FlemonsWarlandDesign, said:  “The idea for the World Vision Garden developed quickly and reflects the influence artists like Barbara Hepworth, Ben Nicholson and Richard Wilson have had on my work.

    “In these relatively austere times in the UK, it is easy to become introspective and focus on preserving one’s own assets and lifestyle. But everything in life is relative, especially when compared to the millions of children who are living in poverty.”

    Justin Byworth, Chief Executive of World Vision UK, said: “World Vision believes the way to change a child’s life is to change the world in which they live, which is why we work closely with communities to achieve sustainable development. I hope that visitors to the Hampton Court Palace Flower Show will be interested in finding out more about our work, including how families are learning improved gardening and growing techniques to feed themselves, and how they can offer a child in the developing world a chance to grow to their full potential.”

    {Images via Telegraph; text source: Royal Horticultural Society}

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    Monday 13 December 2010

    Biddy Bags :: Knitting Nannas :: Social Enterprise


    Biddy Bags products are both a fashion and a social statement.

    Biddie Bags founder Samantha Jockel (middle), with her nanna Ivy Turner and business patron Sarah Blasko.

    Biddy Bags

    is a boutique social enterprise, the brainchild of Samantha Jockel,

    where seniors who knit, crochet and sew

    can be commissioned to create contemporary designs dreamed up by younger women.

    …connects socially isolated nannas and

    mature-aged ladies through craft, economic

    participation and social networking.

    …appreciates and values the skills of

    mature-aged women and challenges the idea

    that the older you get the less you have to

    contribute to society.

    …is inter-generational, combining

    contemporary fresh ideas of young women

    and the skills and crafting abilities of older

    women – to create the Biddy Bags designs.

    Patron: Sarah Blasko

    This is an original Biddy Bag.

    Each Biddy Bags design comes with the story of its maker and each ‘biddy’ shares in the company profits.

    “Even if they’re earning $50 a week from the sale of an $80 bag, it’s significant for the women,” Jockel says.

    Biddy Bags’ market is mostly women aged between 25 and 50, of which Jockel says there are two different types: those who think Biddy Bags’ products are “fun, silly and funky” and those who want to support its ethos of connecting and compensating older women for their time-honoured skills.

    While Jockel is yet to draw a wage from the business – “any money I make is reinvested back into the business”, she was recently named a top-three finalist in Channel 7′s Sunrise Business Builder of the Year awards, which lauds unsung heroes of small business.

    Other woollen strings to her bow have come via recent commissions from the Queensland, New South Wales and South Australian state galleries for her team of ‘nannas’ to create merchandise for the touring Rupert Bunny exhibition and an American impressionism exhibition from New York’s Met. The rest of the time, Biddy Bags sell at the Biddy Bags website, local markets and expo stalls.

    “Initially I didn’t want to make things like tea cosies because I thought they were (ironically) way too nanna, but then I started getting emails from people asking for them. I did the research, found not one business on the internet exclusively selling tea cosies, so figured there must be a gap in the market.”

    Now, the tea cosies are Biddy Bags’ second-biggest seller. As well as the cupcake one featured, there is the iconic pineapple that I love too. Still can’t decide which one to bring home!

    To purchase visit Biddy Bags, and read the recent article in SMH source of the above excerpt.

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