While Wona Bae is from South Korea and Charlie Lawler from Tasmania, the couple met in Germany while Wona was studying for a masters degree in floristry. That was in 2007 and since then they have settled in Australia together, using Melbourne as their base for Loose Leaf, the botanical design studio and retail space that they run in Collingwood. It is from here that they run workshops and create a variety of floral and botanical sculptures for clients such as restaurants and retailers. The studio opened in 2012 and two years later they expanded it to add a retail offering. While Wona also has also studied horticulture, Charlie has a background in design and permaculture design.
Which five words best describe you? We try to be honest, fun, natural, hardworking and curious.
How did you get your career start and what path have you taken since? I guess technically we started on the path even when we were kids, Charlie in his grandparent’s nursery and Wona on her father’s farm.
What’s the best lesson you’ve learnt along the way? That you keep learning lessons every day.
What’s your proudest career achievement? Opening Loose Leaf, it was the culmination of many years’ work and experimentation.
What’s been your best decision? To follow our dream, leave financial security and open Loose Leaf.
Who inspires you? Mother Nature.
What are you passionate about? Again nature, we are mesmerised by the seemingly impossible beauty you find in nature.
Which person, living or dead, would you most like to meet? David Attenborough.
What dream do you still want to fulfil? Just to continue making a living doing something we love doing!
What are you reading? Strange Plants II by Zio Baritaux.