Ryan Klewer was raised in Coffs Harbour, NSW, where his mother owned a nursery, and where she still sells plants at the weekend market. Helping her out is probably where his affinity with plants originated.
After a smattering of early career starts (‘I have been a landscaper, a chef, and a graphic designer,’ he laughs) Ryan pretty much fell into plant styling after he became *the plant guy* amongst his friends and family. A few jobs later for acquaintances wanting help and advice to create their own domestic jungles, and Plant Charmer was born in 2019!
Since then, Ryan’s business has snowballed – from residential projects to installations in commercial spaces, it seems there is no end to the type of person or space that can benefit from a little plant enchantment! Opening a physical shopfront was a natural progression for Ryan, so when an opportunity opened up, he jumped on it! After securing the lease on a former cafe space in a warehouse building in Brunswick East, he set about making it the kind of contemporary plant shop he craved to visit.
‘My experience with plant stores in the past is that they can be a bit overwhelming due to the sheer amount of choice that is on offer,’ he says. ‘So the brief I gave myself was to create a space that felt open and calming, while still feeling warm.’ Inspired by an earlier trip to Mexico City, he devised an organic, minimal layout that would accentuate the natural volumes of the space.
The space itself is serene, with tall ceilings and expansive windows that flood the studio with light. Amongst the forest of greenery is a sprinkling of objects for sale too, such as vessels from Lightly , and ceramics from ZMD Studio. The tables that they sit upon were handmade by Ryan, who carved the legs from aerated concrete, and stained the plywood tops in a warm chestnut colour. And along the walls are photographs by Laura May Grogan, the first in a rotation of featured artists that will change every two months!
If the space gives you a sense of serenity, that’s exactly what it’s designed to do! Ryan hopes his store simulates the sense of calm and rejuvenation we all need – a feeling he definitely finds in nature.
‘I think one of the biggest ways plants can help our wellbeing is by giving us a really enjoyable ritual,’ he explains. ‘The act of taking care of a plant – learning about it, helping it grow, observing changes – is a form of slow living that feels so different to the instant gratification, multi-tasking world we live in. We need more of it, it’s why I do what I do!’
We’re happy you do, Ryan!
Plant Charmer’s new store is located in East Brunswick Village at 149 Nicholson Street. It’s open from 10am – 5pm, Tuesday to Saturday. Learn more about his services and offering here!