Business Spotlight – Jane Louise
In this week’s Business Spotlight we’d like to introduce Jane Louise Fergusson and her business, Jane Louise.
Ever since she was at school, Jane always had an interest in creating beautiful clothing. Following work experience in a local dressmaker’s, Jane’s path to her new future started with her creating her own dress for the school Christmas dance.
Since then, she has studied textiles, embroidery, fashion and art in Moray, Galashiels and Aberdeen, before graduating in the summer of 2014 with a BA Hons in Fashion Design. Utilising this wide range of skills and artistry, Jane Louise creates beautiful and unique handmade items that are more than just items of clothing, but also works of art.
To find out more, we put a few questions to Jane.
Business owner: Jane Louise Fergusson
Date business started: November 2014
Business location: Aberdeen
Business tel: 07735 493 347
1. What did you do before you started your business?
I had recently graduated from university and worked full time in retail.
2. What drew you towards your field of business?
Ever since I finished high school I knew I wanted to design and make clothes. I studied courses in fashion, textiles and art at different colleges and universities, and also worked at a dressmakers for a year, to gain further skills, experience and knowledge.
3. What hurdles and challenges have you faced in getting to the stage you are currently at?
So far the biggest hurdle has been costs for materials.
I do alterations for people and a local shop but this does not cover me for he materials that I need to make clothing, as well as building a website, advertisements and props for when I have a stall at a local event.
4. How has Elevator and Business Gateway helped you and your business on its journey?
Business Gateway has helped me from the very start!
I keep going back to Business Gateway for advice or if I don’t understand something.
I also went along to an event held by Business Gateway where designer Wayne Hemingway talked about his business. This gave me the opportunity to ask him a couple of questions about starting up my own business. I will also be attending Business Gateway workshops to learn more about establishing my business further.
5. Since starting your business, if you could have done one thing differently, what would that be?
Not rushing into things from the start. Because of certain events I rushed into starting up a business, but early on I decided the way I was going was not right for me – so I changed the name and concept of my business.
6. What aspect of your business have you taken the most pride in since you started?
Making my own clothing with my name on them!
Also having my first collection shown in a local boutique shop – it was a great feeling!
7. Do you have any entertaining stories or experiences since starting your business, unexpected events, or interesting developments?
One unexpected aspect about my business would be at the start when I decided to change the concept of my business and the name.
Interesting developments would be my model. At the beginning I was going to make clothing for women with a bigger bust so my model was curvy. However, now I have decided to make my clothing in standard UK sizes, I still use the same model for my photo shoots. It’s because I don’t want my clothing to be modelled all the time by size 8 models like you see on lots of websites. I still want to have the curvy silhouette, which relates to more women.
8. Has the business recently secured significant orders, expanded its premises, taken on new staff, received funding, produced something unique, increased exports, etc.?
I have steady orders coming from a local boutique who I do alterations for and make clothes for her own label.
I have just started making my own clothing which is available on my website and at the local boutique so, I’m hoping to build on orders soon. I would love to expand premises and work from a studio but that is something I’ll be looking towards in the future.
9. What do you love about running your business? Or the sector you work in?
I love designing and making clothing. My dream job is to work with fabric and clothing - and now I get to do this everyday!
Everyday I can be creative. Running my own business is stressful but also rewarding as I am starting from the bottom and have so many dreams and ambitions for my business to get it to the top.
10. What plans do you have for the future of your business?
I plan to have my own premises for Jane Louise. I want to have a studio where I can work from and clients can visit me for fittings or to discuss an outfit they want made.
I would also love to have, further in the future, a shop where I can display my stock and ladies can browse through the rails and try on garments in a relaxed, friendly environment.
Also my plan for my business it to become successful and be the best I can be at dressmaking and most importantly, to make women feel confident and happy wearing a Jane Louise garment!
If you have a fantastic skill that you'd love to turn into a business, then Elevator & Business Gateway can help. From a wide range of free workshops, through to supporting you every step of your journey, Elevator & Business Gateway can help make these dreams a reality.
Contact your local office now to find out more:
Perth: 01738 448310, RossW@ElevatorUK.com
Dundee: 01382 443400, Margaret@ElevatorUK.com
Aberdeen City & Shire: 01224 289700, Hello@ElevatorUK.comBack to all blogs