WINTER always brings the blues but a Bellanaleck florist has been doing her bit to put a spring in the village’s step.
Clare Dougal, who owns the Clare’s Flower Room business, decided to bring some much needed cheer by leaving free bouquets of flowers around the village.
With each bunch, a card was enclosed with a message from Clare herself saying, “Please take me home and enjoy X”.
“I felt that January – even though we’re in February now – could be a dreary month,” said Clare.
“I had a few extra blooms and I thought it would be nice to share a wee few flowers with Fermanagh.
“From what I’ve gathered, I think all of them have been picked up – I got a few messages from people – some happy ladies – saying that they had found them.
“If you come across a nice bunch of flowers, it definitely brings a smile to your face.
“Giving away those free bunches did not dent the accounts much. I had a good Christmas and there was a wee bit extra after paying the tax bills so I decided we would do something nice for everybody.
“This was just for the day. I took a wee notion to bring some cheer to Fermanagh.
“Although I probably will do this again in the future as it seemed to be really well-received.”
Clare’s flowers are no strangers in being well-received with the 40-year-old recently nominated for the Northern Ireland Wedding Awards.
“I’ve only been running the business full-time for two years so it was nice to get recognised,” she said.
Clare, who grew up in Enniskillen and was a former pupil of Devenish College, stated that the idea to run her own business came during the pandemic.
“I haven’t looked back to be honest. It was a brave decision but one that has paid off,” she said.
“I have a studio in Bellanaleck – it’s not a retail shop and people are seen by appointment to collect their pieces.
“I’ve always been interested in flowers. When I used to see my granny pull the flowers out from her garden, I used to feel heartbroken.”
The bunches of flowers have proved to have been a hit in Bellanaleck. One resident, Siobhan Wray, said: “It really brightened up my Thursday. It was such a lovely surprise when I was out on my lunchtime walk.”
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