A new approach to floristry, complete with built-in social conscience, sets freshly-launched business Itty Bitty Bunch apart in a crowded market place.
Introducing: Itty Bitty Bunch
The South Australian conversation around innovation naturally leans toward celebrating tech culture, but businesses like Itty Bitty Bunch show that new thinking in old fields can be just as entrepreneurial as apps and widgets.
Itty Bitty Brunch brought along a few extra arrangements to our photoshoot, and asked us to make wildcard nominations for where they should go. We choose a bus driver and parking inspector – two essential parts of the city who go largely un-thanked – and the WestCare Centre off Wright Street – a place where homeless Adelaideans are made to feel welcome. Head to the Itty Bitty Bunch website to make a nomination of your own and order some flowers.
With no background in floristry, partners Simon Molloy and Olivia Wescombe have teamed up with friend Priscilla Wildy to start the company. Operated via a website and without a bricks and mortar presence, Itty Bitty Bunch offers customers affordability, simplicity and a sense of social good instead of the traditional wide floral choice.
Each day, the trio head to the wholesale flower market in Mile End at about 6am to choose flowers that will feature in their arrangement of the the day. That arrangement will be made about 15 times, and delivered as per orders received through their website.
At the end of the day, leftover bunches are taken to some of the “wildcard nominations” customers have submitted to the team.
“There’s a combination of nominations – one of the first ones was Hutt Street Centre, there’s quite a few hospitals that have been nominated too and people often specify a ward or unit they should go to. A lot of child-based charities as well – Little Heroes, Canteen,” says Priscilla.
“There’s quite a few mental health organisations nominated too – Headspace and Lifeline,” adds Olivia.
“We keep the person who made the nomination anonymous, but there is a message that comes with it and some of those have just been amazingly heartfelt,” says Simon.
The idea of doing something good was one of the key motivations for starting Itty Bitty Bunch.
“If we can make a living and be able to do something like that, that’s heaven for us really,” says Simon.
The other driving force was Olivia’s passion for floristry – a pursuit she’d never tried until about two months ago, but to which she had long been attracted.
“Olivia told me she wanted to be a florist and I just started thinking about it,” says Simon. “Since I was young I have been coming up with these harebrained ideas, so when Olivia said that I started thinking about how we could get her into floristry but do something a little bit different that would stand out too.”
After the concept for Itty Bitty Bunch was developed, Olivia quit her job and dedicated a month to learning floristry skills.
“I did heaps of practice bunches and gave them away to friends and family,” she says. “But with floristry – you can never really get it right or wrong because everyone has different taste. I used to work in a call centre so this is much more fun, it’s awesome.”
After only a couple of weeks of operation, Itty Bitty Bunch is beginning to attract a strong following and resoundingly positive feedback. With the modest goal of simply expanding the suburban footprint over which they can deliver and maintaining the business in Adelaide, it seems likely they’ll be a new business success story for Adelaide – and all while they’re doing the thing they always wanted.
“The best part of every day is giving away the free bunches,” says Priscilla – something which Olivia and Simon agree with enthusiastically.