An innovative Limavady based entrepreneur has put her best foot forward and followed her childhood dream of being her own boss by launching an exclusive bridal boutique thanks to the Go For It Programme, in association with Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council.
The Go For It Programme is part funded by Invest Northern Ireland and the European Regional Development Fund under the Investment for Growth and Jobs Northern Ireland (2014-2020) programme.
Louise Tierney launched Victoria Ivy Bridal Emporium in January 2019 and offers brides-to-be from across the island of Ireland a truly unique experience as they prepare for their special day.
The boutique is open by appointment only and offers brides and their loved ones the pinnacle of luxury and privacy as they browse through the myriad of hand-picked dresses and bridal accessories on offer.
Possibly most exciting for weary brides planning for their perfect day, is the private day spa, available to all brides who say yes to the dress at Victoria Ivy Bridal Emporium.
20-year-old Louise said; “Growing up, I always knew I wanted to be my own boss. Fashion is a big inspiration to me and when I worked in a local fashion boutique, I loved the feeling of helping someone to find the perfect piece for all occasions. I have always dreamed of the perfect wedding day and really wanted to help brides find the dress of their dreams for what is often, the most exciting day of their lives.
“I knew that I wanted my boutique to be a dream walk- in- wardrobe for brides and I started to handpick the designers whose designs I would offer in my store. I knew how I wanted my store to look, and how I wanted my brides to feel, but I lacked the business know-how to turn it into a business.
“For me, I want to make those special moments as memorable as they can be for each bridal party. I love seeing each bride find her dress, and knowing I have helped a little in making her smile on her special day really is an amazing feeling.” Louise continued.
Fully committed to launching her new business and spotting a gap in the market for a one-of-a-kind private bridal boutique, Louise turned to self-employment and the possibility of becoming her own boss as the next step. It was at this stage that Louise got in touch with the Go For It Programme for free advice throughout the start- up stage of her business.
“A friend of mine had actually been through the Go For It Programme, and when she told me that I could avail of the free expert advice in my local enterprise centre, Roe Valley Enterprises, thanks to Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council it was a no brainer. I made a call and it went from there.
The Go For It programme is available throughout Northern Ireland in each council area and delivered free of charge by a team of experienced business mentors through Northern Ireland’s wide network of enterprise agencies and partners. It provides expert advice and help with developing a robust business plan to help turn ideas into a commercial enterprise.
Louise said; “It was all so quick and easy after I first got in touch with the Go For It Programme. My business advisor at Roe Valley Enterprises was incredibly down to earth and was able to advise on key components of the start-up process to give me the best tools to make a success of starting my business. The team were so supportive and really helped me to overcome any concerns I had.
“My business advisor helped me to put together a really comprehensive business plan, which also included financial forecasting for the first two years of trading. This helped me to identify key financial goals such as my breakeven point and my potential profit margins. We composed an in-depth marketing plan, which helped to identify my unique selling points and create my marketing collateral.
Martin Devlin, CEO Roe Valley Enterprises, said; “It is a real pleasure to be able to assist anyone in their start up journey, especially young entrepreneurs like Louise. Louise has a real passion for her unique offering, and a true commitment to making those special moments even more special for each of her bridal parties. She has an exceptional talent and with the care and attention to even the finest of details, a real opportunity to succeed in business.
“We assisted Louise in the development of her business plan, including the initial planning of her marketing proposition, the pillars of her unique customer offering and her growth and employment plans for the future.
“I am delighted to see Victoria Ivy Bridal Emporium do so well and indeed continue to grow. Louise has such a unique and special offering, and with her ambition, I have no doubt she will go far in business. I’m excited to see what the future holds for Louise.”
If you have a business idea you’d like to develop or if you are thinking about starting a business contact the Go For It Programme for a free meeting on 0800 027 0639 or visit: www.goforitni.com.