Shopping

Cecilia Fox

by Lucy Feagins, Editor
Thursday 1st November 2012

Melanie Stapleton of Cecilia Fox in her sweet retail store, with baby Dusty!  Photo – Sean Fennessy

Cecilia Fox details.  Photo – Sean Fennessy

Cecilia Fox details.  Photo – Sean Fennessy

Today I feel compelled to send out a big, heartfelt THANKYOU to all the amazing creative Melbourne kids for making such bloody amazing stuff all the time. I truly cannot keep UP with the awesomeness – it really makes my job far too easy.  Case in point – the gorgeous new Cecilia Fox florist shop, which has just sprung up in East Brunswick.  I mean SERIOUSLY.  COULD things get any cuter or more bloggable than this?!

Melanie Stapleton is the clever local lass behind this sweet retail venture – in fact, Cecilia Fox is Melanie’s alter ego of sorts.  You might recall we’ve featured Melanie’s stunning floral work before (she also contributed to our Guest Blog many moons ago!).  Whilst she started on the shop floor in her native New Zealand 20 odd years ago (!!), in recent years Melanie has gained a stellar reputation for her floral creations for weddings and events, which she takes on under her business name, Cecilia Fox.

Melanie’s new retail space is OURAGEOUSLY cute, featuring a very basic but gorgeous little fit out which incorporates a custom concrete basin and the prettiest geometric paint job!  The shop is tucked amongst a bunch of super cute little cafes on Blyth st, near corner Nicholson st, Brunswick East (Northsiders will know the spot, near Triple RRR).

If all this wasn’t cute / inspiring / hipsterfabulous enough for you, get this – Melanie opened her sweet little shop in late September, and just two weeks later, she had a baby!  That’s right, little Dusty entered the world in early October – and let’s not forget, this is all happening smack in the middle of wedding season!  AMAZING, no!?  Melanie isn’t too fazed… she has a wonderful little team, and in her own words, she’s happy just ‘winging it’!

My hat is firmly tipped to you Ms Fox.  VERY impressive work.

Read on for a few questions with Melanie of Cecilia Fox! -

Double congratulations are in order, you just opened Cecilia Fox AND just had a baby! You’re either crazy or a botanical version of Wonder Woman. Please explain how you had time become a shopkeeper and a new mother, only weeks apart?

Thank you! Most days I feel like I’m a little of both! We opened the shop just two weeks before I gave birth to little Dusty. An old friend once told me that babies bring abundance – abundance of creative energy, ideas, courage, and strength. I’m just rolling with the punches and loving it. Of course I could never done it without my amazing partner and my awesome team.

Can you tell us a little bit about your background as a florist – how did you get your start, how long have you been working as a florist and what do you love about the job?

I’ve been a florist now for close to 20 years. Wow, that makes me feel old! I started as an apprentice in a suburban florist in Auckland, New Zealand, sweeping floors and making coffee. There are so many aspects of my job that I really enjoy. I love being really in touch with the seasons, I love the amazing people I get to meet and places I get to go. I love that every day is completely different and  I love the challenges of nature.

What motivated you to move from your backyard studio to a fully fledged retail space, and how long has the Cecilia Fox store been in development?

Well, we still have our back yard studio that we run our weddings and events out of. With baby Dusty’s arrival it is fantastic that I can oversee everything from home. The shop was a little bit of a no brainer, I had been looking for a space to have a Cecilia Fox spring pop-up store and the tiny space we are in now became available. It just seemed right. I really wanted to have a public space, a kind of window into the heart of Cecilia Fox. Having the shop was more about connecting with our community and sharing our love of what we do than being a conventional retail space.

What are your top five must have flowers for this season?

Five is not enough! But for this week it would have to be tree peonies, sweet peas, poppies, foxgloves and dogwood.

Are the rumours true, does adding vinegar to a vase of water really extend the life of flowers? Do you have any secret floristry tips to extend the life of one’s bouquet at home?

I’ve never actually tried the vinegar trick, seems like a bit of an old wives tale to me! The best thing you can do for your flowers to help them last is make sure your vase is really, really clean, change the water if it gets murky at all and make sure you always re-cut the stems on a sharp angle before you put them in water.

Cecilia Fox (the shop)
221b Blyth st
Brunswick East

Shop Hours

Thursday 9.00am – 6.00pm
Friday 8.00am – 7.00pm
Saturday 9.00am – 5.00pm
Sunday 10.00am – 2.00pm

Other times by appointment… hours set to change over summer, keep your eye on Melanie’s blog for info.  (Blog is also SO CUTE you must check it out).

Cecilia Fox.  Photo – Sean Fennessy

by Lucy Feagins, Editor
Thursday 1st November 2012

38 comments

  • Jane 2 years ago

    Very clever paint job! Flowers look beautiful

  • Cathy 2 years ago

    I just had a look at Melanie’s blog – beautiful.

  • Ingrid 2 years ago

    How beautiful- love the freshness of the paint job and the whole look of the shop.

  • Judy 2 years ago

    Melanie, so glad you have a shop for us to visit. It’s not enough to see your work in pictures. I’ve admired your work for a long time. How did you come up with the name Cecelia Fox? Would love to know.

  • Joanna 2 years ago

    Loving that I have a gorgeous new local florist!

  • Barbara 2 years ago

    It always amazes me how many times I hear about women having a baby & starting a business at the same time?!? Are they bonkers, or just way more organized than me. A floral super woman indeed!

  • julie @ tractorgirl 2 years ago

    She is awesomeness personified, and I’m a bit gobsmacked – how can she do all that with a baby?? I’m with Barbara above, some women seem to have super powers and Mercury-style winged feet. The flowers are totally gorgeous of course.

  • evie 2 years ago

    agreed. outrageously cute! love it!

  • Catherine 2 years ago

    What a happy and gorgeous mama! and such a beautiful shop. Well done Mel!

  • Kellie 2 years ago

    Beautiful shop! Beautiful baby! I love this lady.

  • Debbie 2 years ago

    Cute shop, cute mum and of course cute baby!

  • Jo 2 years ago

    Beautiful and congrats on your new shop and baby, I’ll be sure to call in you are around the corner from our house .. I have a thing for the name ‘Dusty’ xx

  • Kath W 2 years ago

    You’re right, seriously cute. And insanity: business and baby. How beautiful and uplifting this story is: I hope the subplot of sleeplessness isn’t tainting it for Melanie. (BTW, where the heck did she get those SHOES?)

  • beci 2 years ago

    so good to have an amazing local florist! those peonies are now in my bedroom.

  • Emma 2 years ago

    Congrats Melanie – guess where my next flowers are coming from!

  • bianca 2 years ago

    Shop looks so wonderful, can’t wait to treat myself there!

  • Tara Jones 2 years ago

    Beautiful all round.

  • Matty Kapeleri 2 years ago

    Gorgeous shop – amazing!

  • melanie 2 years ago

    thank you ladies! i’m blushing xx mel

  • Well done Melanie! But I have to ask, where are your shoes from? They’re GORGEOUS!

  • jules 2 years ago

    How utterly inspiring!! i have been a florist for a few years now and toying witht the idea of either setting up my own little shop OR starting a family… to do both just seemed overwhelming! Being still undecided and reading this is a little sign from the universe. I take my hat off to you, Ms Fox.

  • Louisa 2 years ago

    I’ve photographed a few weddings with Mel’s flowers. She is a creative genius! Best in the biz!

  • jasmine 2 years ago

    Seriously sweet baby/mumma combo.. Almost makes me clucky!
    What a beautiful & inspiring interview… thanks Lucy & Mel!

  • Harriet 2 years ago

    Gorgeous shop — love the colours. Wish it was in Sydney!

  • Rani.Cee 2 years ago

    Thoroughly enjoyed myself reading this…..flowers & babies make us all go a little nuts & ‘petal-happy’
    Congrats & thank you for the flower-fest
    Rani Xx

  • lisa 2 years ago

    So exciting! I’ve loved her work for the longest time though I also wish she opened up a shop in Sydney. Even if it was a pop up one!

  • Cara Loren 2 years ago

    Super gorge all round

  • Melissa 2 years ago

    Just discovered this shop the other day – so cute and close to home. Every time i have been so far though was the wrong time!! Will be sure to visit again.

  • Katie Marx 2 years ago

    You are one inspiring woman X

  • Paula 2 years ago

    Love this little lady! She is so cute. Pity it’s not Richmond…..move to Richmond please please we need a gorgeous pleasure.

  • melanie 2 years ago

    Ladies! shoes are the one and only KUWAII another brunswick local. Check out her shop on Glenlyon rd.

  • Notting Hill Girl 2 years ago

    Well, looks like I just found my Melbourne wedding florist! And all without leaving London…! Ceclia Fox is exactly the style I’ve been dreaming about…can’t wait to visit in person next year.

  • Kelly Reynolds 2 years ago

    So beautiful! I love the space, the flower arrangements, and the baby :)

  • leanne 2 years ago

    i’ve been on leave, so just catching up on my TDF fix!!!

    i’ve ALWAYS wanted to work with flowers… always. And seeing women like melanie make me think i should just suck it up and DO IT.

    thanks for the beauty, the awe and the prettiness ms fox xx

  • Honey Rose Blossom 2 years ago

    So beautiful and sweet! Congratulations Cecilia Fox…. I really love your style and work, so inspiring to see and enjoy! Oh….by the way, if anyone is pondering on the “vinegar in the water” tip….. a splash of white vinegar in the water of wilting Phalaenopsis orchid stems magically brings them back to life. I think it has something to do with the binding nature of vinegar particles, it really does work!

  • Andrew 2 years ago

    So love all the talented florists in Melbourne – but where can I find just one in Canberra?

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