Jeweller brings alchemy to Howey Place

It felt like a kind of alchemy when jeweller Edie Black found the formula for fusing steel with 24 karat gold.

Now she’s struck gold again by reclaiming an empty shopfront in Howey Place as a jewellery store and studio.

Edie is hard at work building her business and filling display cases with fragile armour, hand-made lace snowflakes and bangles that trap saffron and other oddities in resin.

‘Here, you have an exciting community of artists and artisans where a month ago there were only dusty boarded-up shops,’ said Edie, who has taken a short-term lease as part of the Shopfront Activation Program.

‘I’ve had people drop in and tear up about how wonderful it is to see artists back in the city.’

wrist cuff

Hand-forged wrist cuff by Edie Black

She’s also forging a community with other businesses. Since February. Ms Edie Black has joined underground streetwear boutique Lastly and bespoke tailor Mr Cuff in Howey Place. Toymakers abound around the corner in This Is Not A Toy Store.

City of Melbourne is transforming empty shopfronts into creative spaces, bespoke displays and pop-up shops under the Shopfront Activation Program, a $2.6 million activation program from the City of Melbourne and Victorian Government.

These entrepreneurs all add colour and movement to the city scape, bring new ideas and – with some luck – a new generation of businesses.

‘It’s early days, but the community of artists and locals is spectacular. I love my morning waves from the other creatives in Howey Place.’

‘Even my dog has made friends. He’s besties with the puppy from Bar Americano down the end of Presgraves Place.’

A person and her dog in a shop

Edie and her dog Rufus

When Edie and her Shopfront Activation friends are ready to take the next step and open a business in the city, City of Melbourne will be here to help them.

And our friendly Business Concierge Service is ready with tailored advice for businesses in all phases.

Does this story remind you of a business that started small and has now been in the City of Melbourne for more than 10 years? Or one that could be Small Business of the Year?

We are transforming empty shopfronts into creative spaces, bespoke displays and pop-up shops under the Shopfront Activation Program, a $2.6 million activation program from the City of Melbourne and Victorian Government.