Matches made in heaven between brides-to-be and their perfect gown has seen a Nottingham bridal boutique already surpass its 2015 sales as it approaches its two year anniversary.
Thanks to funding from East Midlands finance provider First Enterprise, DressPlace is now selling more dresses than ever prompted by the investment that the organisation made in 2014 and again in 2015.
DressPlace, based in George Street, sold 600 dresses in 2015 to customers from across the country – eager to look around the city’s flourishing Creative Quarter. Already, owner Helen Dickson has said her boutique has beaten this growth in 2016 and sold 600 dresses alone up to middle of May.
Victoria Copestake, loan fund advisor at First Enterprise, said: “It is great to see DressPlace half way to its second year of trade and going from strength to strength. We helped owner Helen Dickson to get started with a £20,000 loan to set up, develop her website, take on an apprentice and create a cash flow.
“DressPlace is adding to the appeal of Nottingham’s Creative Quarter as a great place for shoppers from across the country. We have funded lots of businesses already in the Creative Quarter and helping businesses to establish themselves and flourish is at the heart of what we do at First Enterprise.
“We would encourage entrepreneurs and business owners to get in touch and see how we could help them take their business plan to the next level.”
DressPlace has 14 employees, three of which are apprentices and Helen is now looking to employ and train a fourth. She also employs three full-time seamstresses who are based on site and work to create the perfect gown for customers around the clock.
Seeing her bridal boutique blossom is a lifelong dream, says Helen. She said: “It was such a big gamble for me two years ago when setting up but it has been unbelievable seeing the business grow. DressPlace is my longed for dream come true.
“People are coming to visit from across the country with customers as far as York, Leicestershire, Leeds and further afield. It is not just great for me but also for the wider Creative Quarter as the area continues to drive investment into the city.
“I am currently looking to recruit another apprentice and continue helping to train young people across the county. This milestone is an achievement which I could never have dreamed of and it makes me so proud”
Nottingham-based First Enterprise, a not for profit organisation, provides loans and free business advice to start-ups and existing businesses from all backgrounds and sectors. First Enteprise supported DressPlace with an initial £20,000 loan and a further £50,000 in 2015.
DressPlace has now been in business for six years and after originally opening in Southwell, Helen moved to the city centre in 2014. Set over three floors, DressPlace sits in the heart of the Lace market. Offering bridal gowns, bridesmaid’s dresses, prom and evening gowns and Mother of the Bride outfits, DressPlace is the go-to shop for all wedding and special occasion requirements.
Helen is determined to make her mark on the bridal industry and said excellent customer service is the lifeline of her boutique.
She added: “My passion to provide excellent customer service is the secret to our success. You can see from the testimonials on our website, that we certainly get it right.”
DressPlace stocks Mori Lee Bridal, Bridesmaids and Prom, Eddy K Bridal Couture, Ivory & Co Bridal Gowns, Veromia Bridal and Bridesmaids, Sonsie & Julietta for Curvy Brides, Jasmine Belsoire Bridesmaids and John Charles mother of the bride outfits.