Set in a local market sits a stall filled with greenery and attractive pottery; an epitome of British springtime. Fresh-faced families are greeted by the warm smiles of Nick Williams and Vicky Frost, owners of the newly launched Potted.
The independent business venture, which only launched last week, sells unique pots to accompany selected vibrant plants.
“This was where one turns one’s obsession into a business,” said Williams.
“I have been really passionate about gardening for such a long time and as I have moved around, from flats with houseplants to houses with gardens, it has become an obsession. More than an obsession, in fact.”
Potted began from a fascination with plant life, and in only six months the old friends Williams and Frost have grown their budding business.
From The Merchant of Venice to the merchant of Catford, Williams is currently a touring theatre producer and has previously run charity theatre businesses, and Frost was recently appointed the executive editor for lifestyle at HuffPostUK.
Williams said: “In about a month’s time, I have a show going off to Toronto to a festival, I have got two shows in Edinburgh, one at Brighton Fringe [an arts festival] and, this time next year, I will most likely have another two shows on tour in this country.”
When asked how they balance their jobs with their new company, Williams jokes: “I don’t sleep.
“Since launch, this week has been particularly tough. We have been at Covent Garden Market at six o’clock in the morning, buying stock and I have also had to be signing off print for Brighton Fringe.
“Thankfully the wonders of a smartphone allow me to balance both. I can be standing on the corner of a street, sending and answering emails, whilst waiting for stock to arrive.”
“I think I have developed my career in the last couple of years. I was incredibly keen to do something different to what I normally do and as a result, I had a light bulb moment and thought, actually, the plants are the thing.”
Potted currently offer a balcony and patio consultancy service, where they hope to help people in getting the best out of their flowers for the lengthiest part of the year possible.
“It was very clear to us [that they should offer the service], as there are so many people living in flats in London, and you see the flats going up and up. Some people try to do their balconies and often encounter problems because of light, because of watering, because they don’t know what the right plants to use are.”
At the moment, Potted are only operating from a studio at ‘Place/Ladywell’, a space for local creative-types and start-ups.
“It’s not a shop, just somewhere to store all of our living stock,” said Williams. “Finding a space to accommodate living stock was a big challenge for us, and it took quite a long time to find the right location. But we will be doing open studio days occasionally.”
Potted have big aspirations for their flowering franchise, and are looking to expand in the future by running stalls at more markets and events throughout the summer. They also want to introduce their own online retail store in the early summer.
However, the sky is the limit for these green-fingered entrepreneurs, as they hope that, by this time next year, they will have a permanent shop space, and will run workshops and community-based projects.
Williams said: “Hopefully, with hard work and passion, it will succeed.”
It’s springtime in Catford, and Potted is certainly in bloom.
Potted can be found here: