Woman made redundant on the day lockdown was announced starts own business venture

Clare Forrest with her Botanical Forrest products Picture: SCOTT FORREST

Clare Forrest with her Botanical Forrest products Picture: SCOTT FORREST - Credit: Archant

The day prime minister Boris Johnson announced lockdown in March was the day Clare Forrest was made redundant from her job in the corporate world.

Clare Forrest with her Botanical Forrest products Picture: SCOTT FORREST

Clare Forrest with her Botanical Forrest products Picture: SCOTT FORREST - Credit: Archant

Mrs Forrest was seeking a sense of calm amid the turmoil when she came up with a new business venture based on her love of scented candles.

“After two decades of commuting to London, I felt a strong pull to work in Suffolk and leave the corporate world firmly behind when my role was made redundant in March,” she said.

“This has been a difficult year for so many, and I started to look for ways to contribute to people’s emotional wellbeing including my own.”

The result was Botanical Forrest, which produces eco-conscious candles. Mrs Forrest — who is based in Woodbridge — liked the sense of wellbeing scented candles evoke.

MORE — Shop Local: Expanding fashion retailer predicts ‘massive growth’ in independentsHer candles and wax melts are made in small batches using 100% plant-based soy wax, and infused with premium fragrance and essential oils. All of them are wicked using natural cotton, poured, labelled and packaged by hand.

She wanted to create products that were “inspired by nature and in particular by rural Suffolk with its unique mix of heathland, woodland and heritage coastline”, she said.

“This has been a difficult year for so many, and as we’re all spending so much time at home, I was looking for a way to contribute to people’s emotional wellbeing. So many of us associate burning candles with calm and relaxation,” she explained.

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All of her Botanical Forrest products are eco-conscious, and include vegan-friendly candles and wax melts, with packaging that is recyclable. She has created candles in a range of scents, including two Christmas scents — orange, nutmeg and cinnamon and pine and eucalyptus.

As well as being eco-conscious, Mrs Forrest said that another key factor in launching her business was a desire to collaborate with other local businesses.

“I am pleased to already be working with a number of independent businesses, from our website designer, to the artist who designed our logo, and our photography. A local potter produces our handmade wax burners and as we expand our product range, we will work with other local artisans.”