Nonsense plants the seed of change at Prestwich store

Popular homewares store and cafe, Nonsense, is changing the offer at its Prestwich branch, from the end of March, in order to focus on the successful plants and lifestyle element of the business and its new city centre presence.

Run by husband and wife team, Alex Newton and Jeanette Ramirez, Nonsense first opened in Prestwich in 2016. The store offered customers a family friendly place to grab a coffee while browsing a selection of carefully curated homewares, plants and lifestyle products from independent brands such as Ferm Living, Studio Arhoj, Baggu and Plan Toys.

Co-owner, Alex, said: “We opened Nonsense as we wanted to do something as a family that drew on our love of design and colour and Jeanette’s expertise of plants.  We also wanted it to work around our young family. As I grew up in Prestwich, and we had recently moved back to the area, we felt it was the ideal location for our shop. Since we’ve opened our doors, we’ve seen a lot of new faces and think our decision to open here was a good one.    

“We have been so pleased with the response we’ve had so far and the goodwill from other Prestwich businesses, it’s a really great community around here. In fact, we’ve almost been overwhelmed by the demand at times, which is why we are rethinking our offer.”

The Prestwich branch will no longer host a cafe element but will expand the retail area though the space to include a more diverse plant selection and aftercare service and more home and lifestyle products, including a bigger selection of children’s toys and clothing.

“We get so many customers coming in and asking for food, as well as coffee, and that was never intended to be something we did - there are so many other great Prestwich cafes and bars fulfilling that need better than we ever could.

“We’ve enjoyed having the coffee shop as it’s brought us in contact with so many of our nice customers, but it takes up far more of our time than originally anticipated, making it tough to focus on growing the parts of the business that we are really passionate about.”

The couple have also recently branched out into Manchester city centre with a pop up store at Hatch, a unique space supporting new ideas in food, drink, music and style, on Oxford Road.

“Hatch has been a really exciting opportunity for us so far, but also a huge learning experience in terms of understanding what we are uniquely positioned to offer our customers, in store and online.

A key part of the new proposition will be the plant selection and aftercare service, provided by Jeanette, who runs her own creative studio bringing together plants, interiors and art. The couple feel that Jeanette’s specialist knowledge, combined with a growing trend for ‘green interiors’, will prove popular.

Alex added: “We see the Prestwich store as still being very much part of the local community and are planning an extended programme of creative workshops for all ages, which have been really popular in the past. We know that some of our customers will be disappointed not to be able to pop in for their regular coffee, but hope they will continue to visit us and find the perfect purchase or gift for all occasions, or learn a new creative skill.”

The cafe element will be removed on Saturday 24 March and over the following weeks the space will be transformed. The shop will remain open during this time.

In the coming weeks, Nonsense will announce, via social media, an evening event at the store to say thank you to all past and present customers for their support so far and to launch the new workshop programme. All are welcome to attend.