Working from home could only last for so long for two small business owners.
Heather Sleet from Posybloom Floral Design and Kayla Woods from KS Beauty Studio are both small business owners.
Starting out in their homes to save on rent, save on paperwork dealing with landlords and related bills, and save on time working their own flexible hours, both have created their own businesses but found themselves reaching capacity working from home.
"This time last year we were both at the point with our businesses where we either grow our businesses or sit back and always remain the same, our books were full," Kayla said.
"After lockdown I was either going to call it quits because prices of flowers were just getting unmanageable or I was going to have to take a big leap and move to get more foot traffic to get more products sold," Heather said.
Meeting each other in 2018 at a PopUp Business School, the two remained friends, often finding themselves working together at weddings and toying with the idea of opening a shop together.
But it was a meeting at the water cooler of Raumati Village, The Remedy coffee truck, at the perfect time which accelerated ideas into reality.
"We were over at the coffee cart having a coffee, and we looked across the road and someone was doing some painting at the old Mac's Collectable shop," Kayla said.
"But there was nothing on the window saying for lease, so we asked around and found out who the landlord was and got the place."
The process was not all smooth sailing, but together they now occupy 22 Raumati Rd, bringing beauty services and flowers to Raumati Village.
"Heaps of people have said it's such a clever idea to share a shop together," Heather said.
"The first week was nuts, we had such a great welcome from people in the area and have had so many comments saying you're a great addition to the village."
With the new location the goal is for their businesses to expand.
"The amount of product, flowers, I've been buying has almost tripled since opening.
"We now have the foot traffic exposure."
On top of a new opening, Heather is also giving back by participating in Peonies with a Purpose campaign.
The campaign is run by Feel Good with Flowers and the NZ Peony Society.
All proceeds will go towards the Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand to provide funding for mental health services and support for those who need it.
Each bouquet or bunch of peonies purchased at a participating retailer will see $1 donated to the foundation to be used for its programmes.
Feel Good with Flowers marketing manager Rebecca Jones said this year has been a difficult year for many Kiwis and that peonies, which symbolise compassion, are the perfect flower choice for the charitable campaign.
"New Zealanders have faced navigating new financial, emotional and everyday challenges that have had a profound effect on our mental health and wellbeing.
"We feel so fortunate to work in an industry in which the products and services we provide bring such happiness to others.
"We wanted to pass that 'feel good factor' on and provide additional support to a charity that makes a difference in improving our community's mental, emotional and physical wellbeing."
The campaign runs until the end of November, the end of peony season.
"Everyone in the flower business lives for peony season all year long and given the circumstances Feel Good with Flowers decided to do something more than just selling flowers," Heather said.
"We thought the Mental Health Foundation would be apt this year.
"Everyone loves peonies and it's an organisation which has had a seesawing year - the need has gone up and fundraising has gone down."
Copseford Flowers at Kapiti Lights is also participating in Peonies with a Purpose.