Success Stories

Wedding dress shop just the fit for Kim

Posted in Start

A young local entrepreneur is helping couples enjoy the perfect wedding day, thanks to help from Blackpool Council.

Kim Lord, 22, opened the ‘Always and Forever’ shop on Highfield Road last year, selling bridal dresses and offering wedding planning services to couples planning to tie the knot.

After deciding to become her own boss, Kim seeked support from Blackpool Council’s Get Started service, who offered advice on creating a business plan and doing financial forecasting, to give her the best chance of success when the shop opened.

One year later and the shop is going strong, selling a range of packages for weddings and events from organising the stationery to picking up thank you gifts.

Kim said: “I feel like I’ve been on a rollercoaster ride in the middle of a whirlwind. It has been so busy we didn’t even have time to launch - we are thinking about a belated first birthday party instead.

“I have learnt so much over the last year – I love this work even more than I thought I would. I planned to create a job that would fit around my life but
it’s so much fun it’s taken over my life.

“There have been a few moments where I nearly panicked but I’ve held my nerve and the business is really settling in. I made a little mistake with advertising in the first couple of months because I didn’t ask enough questions. So I would advise anyone starting their journey to make sure they understand exactly what they are signing up to!

“My favourite part of running the business is seeing people so happy, finding out about people’s fabulous love stories and opening the parcels containing gorgeous new dresses. I wouldn’t swap this for the world. Starting a business was definitely the right move for me.”

Cllr Mark Smith, Blackpool Council’s Cabinet Member for Business and Economic Development, said: “Kim is a great example of another young person who has taken their career into their own hands and decided to set up on their own.

“It’s a bold step to make a decision like this at a young age but I’m delighted that our help could give her the support she needed to make her dream a reality.

“It just goes to show, anybody can become their own boss, as long as you have the enthusiasm to get started and the drive to make it a success.

“90% of the businesses that Get Started has helped in the last two years are still operating and in some cases, doing very well indeed. That’s because businesses can still benefit from our expert advice and support even after they are up and running.”

To find out if you could become your own boss, contact Get Started on 477147 or search www.blackpool.gov.uk/getstarted