Emma Nosurak, Owner of Plant Shop

Bringing Manchester what it’s missing: more green!

I was always the rebel at school. I didn’t go that much and never connected with words. Sentences aren’t my priority in life… I’m definitely more visual. I love creating and designing – putting colours together – so I studied Fashion & Textiles at university. I realised a 9 to 5 wasn’t going to work for me… I could make my own rules if I was self-employed. I started designing upcycled fashion accessories and collaborated with Urban Outfitters. I loved running my own business, but when you’re 25 in a hedonistic city like Leeds, it’s challenging.

A lot of things happened at once. I collected records and quickly got into the music and clubbing scene. When a new buyer came in at Urban Outfitters who didn’t connect with my designs, it was natural for me to become a DJ.

I moved to Manchester at the age of 30 to work in radio. Starting off at XFM, I did the Saturday evening show at BBC Radio 6 for around three years; then I became a freelance booking agent for presenters, artists and DJs.

When I turned 40, I felt a change was coming… I’d never wanted to go to Australia, but I woke up one morning and booked a flight to Melbourne. Walking around the Fitzroy neighbourhood, I noticed lots of independent plant shops. ‘That’s what Manchester is missing: more green!’ I thought. Inspired, I came home and bought 100 miniature cacti off a grower on the internet. I’d rented a small shop in Cheadle for my office, so I put them outside and things (literally!) grew from there.

After two years, I closed the Cheadle shop to move to Stockport. I’ve always had a soft spot for its charm and knew I’d end up here. In the last 12 months I’ve bought a house; ended my job of 10 years; and opened a second pop-up shop in Sale.

I’m using my booking skills to host DJs and events, and heavily curating our Instagram feed (a nod to my degree).

It’s a lot and I’m trying to rest my mind, but I feel like something new is coming from Plant Shop… I don’t know what, but it’s exciting!

Plant Shop

Photo credit: Mark Williamson