It is very important to support our local businesses especially in the lead up to Christmas.
Far too many of us take the trip to Belfast for our Christmas shopping, I am also guilty of this, however many of us will use the excuse that we are going up to the Christmas markets and doing a bit of shopping while we are there.
In all honesty there really isn’t a lot in Belfast that you can’t get here in Fermanagh. We have the majority of high street chain stores and we also have our fair share of individual boutiques.
Although we don’t have as large a selection of stores or our shops may not be quite so big but we do have plenty to choose from. Believe it or not we do also have our own pop up Christmas markets.
If like me you like to put a bit of thought into your gifts you will need to plan ahead especially if it’s something unique that you may need to order in store or search for. This year I hope to make some gifts myself so I will need to be prepared.
If you like the thought of purchasing locally made gifts you will be able to do so at the various Christmas markets and craft fairs that will be taking place over the coming weeks. For example Bright Eyes Animal Sanctuary are holding a Christmas Fair this Saturday from 10am – 4pm at St Michaels Youth Club, Belmore Street Enniskillen. There will also be a 3 day Christmas Fair in Belleek on 5th, 6th and 7th December on the grounds of Belleek Pottery.
As well as the obvious Christmas decorations and Christmas home wear you will also be able to purchase everything from handmade chocolate, to handmade skin care, candles, knitted items, home bakes, jewellery and clothing.
These cottage industries, which were in recent years dying out, have never been so popular with people going that extra mile to find unique and special gifts especially at this time of year.
If you like the idea of making some unique gifts yourself or at least trying out something simple but effective there are lots of classes going on locally.
Our ‘Around the District’ notes will point you in the right direction for all sorts of knitting and sewing classes.
If you would like to try your hand at crocheting or lace making the weekly classes have started again in Clones in ‘Liberty Belle’ on Fermanagh Street on a Wednesday night. I learnt a lot from previously attending the crochet classes and am currently finishing a blanket for my baby niece, who was born last week.
This will no doubt be one of many unique gifts I will be creating for baby Alice and it’s good to know that spoiling your family and friends doesn’t have to cost a fortune. Creating your unique gifts will also provide you and your loved ones with lasting memories that no shop bought item could compare to.