Thursday 16 August 2018

'As far as negatives go with owning a business, there are not too many,' meet the man behind Painted Clans

Brendan McCarey of Painted Clans
Brendan McCarey of Painted Clans
Ellie Donnelly

Ellie Donnelly

Custom, hand-painted, contemporary family coat of arms company Painted Clans, started out in 2014 when Brendan McCarey was looking for a wedding gift for a friend.

Today it has turned into a vehicle that has allowed Brendan to explore who he is and where he came from, as well as providing Brendan with the joy of being a business owner and the flexibility to look after his young family.

"A friend of mine living in Australia was getting married moving back to Australia. I didn’t want to give just money, I wanted to give him something that he could take home and put in his home," Brendan tells

"I decided to look for something online, and when I couldn’t find anything I made a family coat of arms plaque and I never thought any more about it."

Brendan McCarey
Brendan McCarey

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"Then a few of friends saw it, it was put up on Facebook, and all of a sudden, coming up to the following Christmas I was bombarded with orders."

From this, Brendan, who operates from Mullen Village in the cosy quiet corner of north Monaghan, started doing freelance work.

"There are two markets for the business, the main one would be the Irish wedding market, and the second one would be the Irish-American, ex-pat community, who would buy single coat of arms plaques."

Brendan at work
Brendan at work

"The work is seasonal and I work another job, but come the summer I take time off work and then it would get busy again around Christmas."

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When asked about the benefits of having his own business, Brendan cites the freedom, "I have a young family."

"And it’s just nice actually, growing your own business."

As far as negatives go, Brendan, who runs the business with his wife, says "there are not too many."

"The negative [with owning your own business] is that there is pressure on, and I would be a social person so working on your own all the time...sometimes you just want to bounce off somebody."

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