Love is in the Éire.
As the last of the Christmas pine needles are finally swept away, Cupid makes his triumphant return and gets straight to piercing lovers through the backsides with potent arrows, compelling them to spend what remains of their February wages on flowers, chocolates and trinkets.
Whether you love, hate or are completely indifferent towards Valentine's Day, the likelihood is there's someone in your life you might need to pick up a card or small gift for. It doesn't even have to be a partner - you could be looking to shower a little affection on your mam, your bestie, the man next door who takes your bins out for you when you're on holidays - everyone could do with a little bit of love around this time of year.
If you'd like to treat someone special in your life and want to support local in the process, you've come to the right place - here are 12 Irish businesses to buy your flowers, chocolates and cards from this Valentine's Day.
A beloved pillar of the Irish floral industry, Crate deliver to every corner of the country and your blooms are kept safe and secure with 100% recyclable packaging. This Valentine's Day they're encouraging you to send flowers to the person in your life who "is your safe place" - a partner in crime who you are your boldest self with, a work colleague that’s actually a really good friend even outside of work, a sibling that just knows when you need a bit of a pick me up, a parent ‘who is your constant’ - anyone who you feel deserves a bit of love, really.
Their beautiful V-Day bunch is available in two sizes - €48 (Single 15 stems) and €68 (Double 30 stems), with free delivery all over Ireland. Order yours HERE.
Me Aul Flower
Another Dublin-based business specialising in vibrant bunches guaranteed to make you look twice, lovingly arranged by florist Eva Lawes. Their Valentine's bouquet pops with romantic pinks and reds and fairy tale-esque sprigs of green, and will set you back €55 for the smaller size and €95 for large. Delivery is available for those within 5km of Stoneybatter, Dublin 7, with collection possible too. Get to ordering ahead of the big day HERE.
Joeanna Caffrey Flowers
You'll find Joeanna Caffrey's beautiful blooms at her stores in Avoca Dunboyne, Rathcoole, Ballsbridge and Kilmacanogue, and everything from her hydrangea wreaths to her long-stemmed rose bouquets is lovingly assembled and sure to take your Valentine's breath away. Prices start at €60 with nationwide delivery available - more info is HERE.
Hand-painted, cherry-filled chocolate hearts are the order of the day from Galway-born business Grá this February. Created in small batches, each Grá chocolate takes three days to make and is filled with a carefully perfected signature recipe before being hand painted and lovingly placed into its box. They've also got a selection of cards available to go with the choccies - find out more and get ordering HERE.
The chocolates from this Laois-based business are literal works of art and would make a beautiful V-Day gift. The bonbons are made in small batches, hand painted and completely unique. They look too good to eat - although I'm sure your Valentine will find a way. Available for nationwide delivery - have a browse and get ordering HERE.
The chocolates from this Cork-based biz remind me of the chocolates the Trunchbull munched on in Matilda - nostalgic, colourful and the height of luxury. Koko's chocolates are prepared in small batches and use locally sourced seaweed, honey and herbs where possible, so you can give the taste of C0rk this Valentine's. They've also got a tasty selection of vegan chocolate - have a browse and order a box HERE.
Bean and Goose
Well known for their opulent chocolate slabs complete with wee hammers for smashing, Bean and Goose have just released their limited edition Irish Sea Salted caramel bar with pretty pink packaging, perfect to share with the one you love. Browse more sweet treats from this Wexford-based business and get ordering HERE.
Opened in 1996 by Ferdinand and Helena, Chez Emily is so named for their only daughter Emily. The handmade chocolates are based on original family recipes drawn from Helena's Belgian roots. Their Valentine's boxes are like something out of a 90's rom-com, and you can order one for your love HERE. Nationwide delivery is available.
Bold and colourful with nods to some of our favourite cultural icons, Howrad is a one stop shop for cute and playful cards. You're sure to find something for the pop-culture aficionado in your life in their online shop - have a rummage HERE.
Dublin Card Company
In a similar vein, Dublin Card Company pays homage to moments of Irish cultural excellence (yes, that's exactly how I'd describe the brown sauce sambos from Intermission, thank you very much), with plenty of tongue-in-cheek options for your love this V-Day. Check out what's on offer HERE.
Rachel Corcoran Illustrations
Fairytale-esque illustrations with a nostalgic twist, designed to double as a print your Valentine can cherish long after February. The romantic pinks and reds and delicate lines will be sure to make them swoon - get ordering HERE.
You may know Sophie Holden Halpin for her popular Coffee Shops Around Ireland illustration series, but she also offers a great selection of playful, bold designs for the one you love for Valentine's Day. Check out her work and get ordering HERE.
Happy V-Day, one and all!
Header image via Instagram/Koko Kinsale/The Crate Flowers