NORMALLY a fifth birthday is a time for celebration and a few candles – but Florence and Amelia’s is marking the occasion by unveiling a whole new look.
And the store is expanding by taking in a coffee shop as it hopes to be a destination for the community.When its doors open at noon on Saturday, October 5, people will see a very different look to the Corporation Street business – it will be much bigger for a start.
And owner Nicola Buckley revealed what has been done and the reasoning behind the work, which saw them temporarily move around the corner to Trinity Street – and that it has been in her thoughts for a while after work was done in neighbouring Armentieres Square.
She said: “We’ve taken down the false ceiling, taken out part of the chimney breast and exposed the brick wall in the original shop and knocked through to the new build on Armentieres square.
“We will be reopening the existing shop with lots of new stock and the new side will be a coffee and wine bar.
“We can’t wait to reopen at Corporation Street with a completely new look, fresh ideas, new stock and of course our new coffee and wine bar.“We’ve been planning for ages and unfortunately the build has took longer than anticipated. The old toilets were knocked down a few years ago and we’ve been planning since then.
“We love all our customers and wanted to create somewhere where they can pick up creative ideas, shop for unique gifts but also stay and enjoy the ambience of Florence and Amelia’s with a great coffee or a nice glass of wine.
“Our aim is to be a destination for the community.”
Nicola’s journey with Florence and Amelia’s has seen her rise from setting up to winning a national award in just five years.
Selling gifts, handmade and vintage household items and furniture, as well as candles, fragrances, jewellery, Fusion Mineral Paint and cards, the store has become a big part of Stalybridge’s business community.
And earlier this year, she scooped the Sole to Sole Award for being best sole trader in the UK at The Small Awards, which recognise operators around the country.
Now the work is almost done, Nicola is really looking forward.The structural work was done by Berkeley Construction but how it looks is all down to her and husband Steven.
And while it has not always been easy, especially with the move to the temporary location, the results should outweigh any down side.
Nicola added: “We’re really lucky that our customers are so understanding. It has been challenging trying to keep stock levels in a much smaller shop and I think they’ll all be happy as will we when we re-open at our original store.
“We’ve had lots of challenges and by no means has it been plain sailing but, fingers crossed, we’re on the home straight now.”
• Florence and Amelia’s reopens at its original location on Corporation Street, Stalybridge, at noon on Saturday, October 5.