There’s a new flower shop tucked away in the shopping center next to Yo Mama’s. Pretty Petals Boutique offers custom arrangements for any occasion alongside upscale resale. Locally made jewelry is also on display.
In August, Jenelle Partridge decided to leap into a career path she’s dreamed about since childhood.
“I’ve always loved fresh flowers. I think it was from the roses that my grandma Partridge had in her yard. They brought everybody joy. We would pick them and give them to everybody because she had so many.”
Partridge has owned her own business for the past 10 years, a local dance studio. But the dance studio was secondary to her full-time job and she did not need to rely on it for income.
“I have four kids so having a full-time job was very important. I had to make sure that they were provided for, but my youngest is a senior, so I was like, it’s time. If I don’t do it now, I don’t know when I’m going to do it.”
Partridge is using her crafting skills to create arrangements that stand out: corsages with wooden flowers, arrangements that combine fake flowers and real flowers, with touches like miniature birds or pinecones. A recent funeral arrangement featured roses, quail and a pinecone.
“I’m able to use my crafter side, my creativity, on a daily and not just suppress it until four o’clock when I get to the dance studio”
Partridge has plenty of experience adding rhinestones to costumes, creating silk flower arrangements and boutonnieres for family weddings and making holiday wreaths, but it took some adjusting to get used to charging for her crafting skills.
Partridge also had to adapt to making flower arrangements for funerals, a challenge she didn’t anticipate.
“I just thought about happy flowers,” she said.
Especially in the small community of Socorro, funeral arrangements can be challenging because she’s likely connected to the person who passed in some way.
“That’s probably been the hardest part about this, but at the same time I’m very honored that they would choose me to do that,” she said.
Partridge has a lot of admiration for the women who already sell flower arrangements in town and is excited to join their ranks.
“My nana and Lauren opened the Christmas Store together. They had that when I was younger, and I was able to see how much love and stuff they put into their creations. My nana got sick with cancer. She got out of it.”
Partridge’s favorite parts of the job are being creative every day and being her own boss. Word of mouth has helped her bring in customers, but it hasn’t hurt to have a daughter in high school.
“She’s very giving. Say I have an abundance of flowers, she says ‘Mom I’m going to take flowers to so and so,’ and she makes a little arrangement.”
Pretty Petals is located at 915 California Street, Suite D.