Stop to Smell the Flowers

Categories: Elements, Florists, Local, Shop

The other day we had the pleasure to meet one of our local florists at her lovely shop in Oakland’s Rockridge neighborhood, Natalie from Clementine, now known as Belle Flower. You might not recognize that it’s a flower shop from the outside but this cute boutique has been steadily attracting passersby with a beautiful array of vintage and local artisan finds. Only when you enter to smell the sweet scent of nature do you realize that Natalie has more to offer than just a good sense of style.

We asked Natalie a little bit about herself and what she loves about Oakland. Continue reading to get more tidbits.

How long have you had your shop?
Clementine opened in July of 2010. My business partner and friend, Ivy, and I had been talking about opening a shop together for years. Ivy has an incredible eye and design aesthetic, she knows “pretty things” really well! Combined with my experience in the floral world we thought a mixture of our two talents would create a beautiful and inviting little place for people to come in pick up some fresh flowers or pick up a beautiful hostess gift.

You’ve lived in Oakland for over 10 years? What keeps you around?
Man, I can’t seem to leave this town. Sometimes I’m in awe of my sense of home, I never realized I had it with such force! But Oakland, it’s hard to leave you. I came to the Bay Area from upstate New York when I was young. I grew up on the other side of the tunnel (we all know what that means) and after school I would take Bart into Oakland and spend massive amounts of time here.

Where do you get some of your wares in your store and inspiration for things to sell?
We go to all the great antique fairs here and we’re always on the prowl for a good estate sale. We carry mostly vintage. We do have a few new things from local artisans. Whitney Smith is a good example, she’s an amazing and talented local potter and the pottery that we have of hers we are super in love with!

What is your favorite place to go in Oakland for Art?
Oakland is a community that fully supports and loves the arts. Friends are always putting together shows, either in their homes or in small intimate galleries. We have a lot of great resources here and I’m very proud of our little movement. I am constantly inspired.

What is the best kept secret for keeping your flowers long lasting in a vase?
A lot of people think there are tricks or products to help make the flowers last longer… it’s arguable. For me I just make sure that I change out the water every couple of days and that the flowers are never in direct sunlight or in a hot room.

Posted by on April 18th, 2011 at 3:28 AM | Comments (0)

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