In June of 2011 Tim Borum saw his business collapse, literally.
"I thought it was an earthquake," he said.
Borum was referring to the collapse of the old Five and Dime building on Oak Street in Carrier Mills. Borum, his sister, the woman who had agreed to purchase to flower shop and the woman's elderly mother were in the adjacent building which housed Angel Scent flower shop at the time of the collapse.
"The walls flexed and shifted visibly," Borum said. "It was pretty frightening."
The part of the building that the flower shop was in was too badly damaged to be repaired after the Five and Dime was demolished and the owners of Angel Scent, Jeri Morgan and Carla Kirkland were forced to close the business, putting Borum on the hunt for a new job.
Tim Borum had been in the flower business since 1993, having previously worked as a surgical nurse at hospitals in Carbondale and Marion. A native of Herrin his first job as a florist was at Specialties Florist in Marion. Borum's very first flower arrangement won first place in a contest at John A. Logan College in Carterville. In 2004, Borum was employed as manger and designer at Angel Scent florist in Carrier Mills. Borum worked there for seven years gaining a reputation for his arrangements throughout the area.
"I'm known for my Memorial Day and funeral arrangement," Borum said.
After Angel Scent closed, Borum was unemployed for a month before finding a job at Roses Flowers in Benton. One day in May of 2012 Borum drove by and saw a building on US 45 South for sale. He called a friend, Kevin Graham and told him he had a business opportunity to discuss.
"The next day we were opening a flower shop," Borum said.
Though Borum had been considering going back into nursing, he felt this was too good an opportunity to pass up.
"I am well known in the area and have a good following so I decided to give it a try," Bourum said adding, "Kevin Graham was willing to support me in that."
Graham purchased the inventory from Angel Scent and in a couple of days Village Blossoms was up and running.
Village Blossoms and Tanning, located at 7248 U.S. Route 45 South has now been open for a year and the business is doing very well. In addition to a full service florist and Tele-Florist, Village Blossoms also offers several other services.
Tuxedo rentals are available with package discounts, candles and candle accessories from Pink Zebra Candles and vinyl printing from Creations by Kristy, owned by Kristy Dunn. The vinyl printing uses vinyl, custom cut to any pattern, in any color to be applied to virtually any surface or object, from T-shirts to cups. Village Blossoms offers tanning and tanning packages with four tanning beds, two regular and two super beds.
Page 2 of 2 - One of Borum's busiest times of the year is when the area high schools hold their proms. Well known for his Prom floral arrangements, Borum enjoys working with the Carrier Mills-Stonefort High School by assisting with floral arrangements for school events. For the students, this year Borum is offering a package deal of a tuxedo rental along with discounts on prom floral arrangements and tanning packages. Borum also throws in a $5 donation to the high school after party fund in the package.
Borum has a very good working relationship with the area funeral homes and is dedicated to helping customers find the floral arrangements best suited to their needs.
"I'm very committed to making the grieving process as smooth and gentle as possible" Borum said adding, "If a family cannot afford floral arrangements we will donate them free of charge."
Village Blossoms also offer their customers the option of pre-ordering funeral arrangements so a patron can choose their own floral arrangements for their funeral ahead of time.
Borum employs Rita Feazel as his assistant floral designer, stating that he feels lucky to have a person with her skills.
Village Blossoms has a page on FaceBook and welcomes the exposure it gives his shop. As a Tele-Florist, Borum can help his customers have floral arrangements delivered anywhere in the world for any occasion. Borum plans to be in Carrier Mills with Village Blossoms until he retires, and is making plans to work as a florist on a cruise liner after retirement.
Borum is grateful to the community for the business and support.
"The people have been very good to us" Borum said. "I cater to everyone, whether they have a dollar or a million dollars, no one leaves here without getting what they want."