Melbourne mum and self-taught floral designer Stacey Culpin has nurtured her home-grown artificial arrangement business into a global phenomenon.
Stacey Culpin, hailing from Melbourne northern suburbs, is the founder and chief designer at Forever Flowering, a Tullamarine-based company specialising in real-touch bouquets and artificial flower arrangements.
Harking back to humble beginnings in a spare corner of the garage, Stacey explains that her entry into small business was anything but glamorous. “I was living with my husband in our first little rental home, expecting our first child and completely flat broke.” She recalls. “I distinctly remember an afternoon spent in tears when we couldn’t afford toilet paper. It was a time of severe desperation, but I had been experimenting with artificial floristry for a little while, and I knew that I had something special. So, our situation was the turning point for me to turn my art into something I could offer other people. And that’s how Forever Flowering was born.”
When the business started to gain traction in the local market, it wasn’t long before Forever Flowering had outgrown its base. From home studio to backyard warehouse, Stacey eventually took the leap to a Tullamarine factory space in 2020 where she currently works alongside a team of 6 women all equally passionate about the Forever Flowering vision. “I am truly lucky to have been able to assemble a team that not only work well together, but who understand the essence of the artwork we are creating,” Stacey explains. “Whilst the business has expanded and evolved, there is still so much love, care and attention paid to every arrangement, every custom order, and I think that’s been the key to our ongoing success”.
What must also be noted is that through years of hard work and research experimenting with different artificial floral concepts and designs, the Forever Flowering collection employs floral design technology that its unrivalled in the marketplace. And whilst her carefully curated cache of stunning, real-touch floral arrangements are consistent favourites with both return and new customers, Stacey and the team have also introduced several limited addition collections, regularly selling out within mere hours. Stacey also hosts glamorous group workshopping sessions, where she shares the love of her craft with dedicated Forever Flowering customers, clients and followers.
Through her years of hard work, product development and authentic connection with her team and client-base, Stacey has grown what was once a means-to-an-end hustle into a six-figure business. And following year-on-year growth in the domestic space, Stacey recently unveiled the exciting news that she is launching Forever Flowering to the global market. With Forever Flowering now averaging deliveries of 100 – 150 arrangements per week to homes and businesses across Australia and New Zealand alone, a move to international supply means that Stacey is singlehandedly taking Australian floral design to a whole new level.
After being approached in early 2022 by a Singapore-based client, Stacey acknowledged that it was finally time to face facts – Forever Flowering was no longer a small operation. Following the success of this potentially once-off endeavour, Stacey realised that expanding the reach of Forever Flowering could be more than just a pipe dream. “Our journey has always been heavily influenced by our clientele, whether that be design, floral choices and vase options. Now, through our social media channels and word of mouth we realised that our designs are reaching people across the globe, so we promised to deliver – literally and figuratively speaking!”
An official introduction to global shipping began in June 2022, and now Forever Flowering clients and customers in Europe, the United States and Asia have been able to join the ever-growing list of FF Fanatics, and purchase from Forever Flowering’s exquisite collection of artificial floral arrangements, having them carefully and lovingly shipped right to their door.
“The launch into the international market has been incredibly emotional. It’s more than just expanding our business. This means I can employ more staff, train more people in the art of floral design, and see our creations appearing in homes and businesses not just around the country but around the world. I am so proud of my team and can’t wait to tackle this next step in our journey together.”
Whilst this move is a testament to years of hard work and dedication from Stacey and the Forever Flowering team, it could also hopefully signal a turn in the tide for small business in Australia. Stacey adds that she hopes that others are encouraged by the opportunities once again opening up both domestically and overseas. “We are incredibly grateful to be able to share Forever Flowering with the rest of the world, and look forward to engaging with a whole new community of Forever Flowering Fans.”