A Leeds mum of two is combining her passion for business and fashion to run a repairs and alterations franchise.
Neluka Dunning, who is the franchise owner at The Zip Yard Leeds North in Chapel Allerton, plans to put the store right at the heart of the community and will be promoting the importance of making clothes last.
“It’s crazy to think that £140 million worth of unwanted but still wearable clothes are thrown away every year,” said Mrs Dunning.
“The Zip Yard is determined to help reduce that figure by encouraging customers to extend the life of clothes through repairs, alterations and upcycling.
“We need to see repairing and reusing clothes to extend their life as a first rather than last option as it prevents further damage to the environment and saves money.”
Originally from Swansea, Mrs Dunning has lived in Leeds for 17 years. She travelled widely while working in sales and marketing management for a service sector company before taking a career break to bring up her two children aged ten and eight.
“I’m really excited about this new chapter in my business journey as it fits in perfectly with family commitments now that my children are older,” she said.
“I’ve always had an interest in clothes and fashion and see a huge demand for alterations and repairs. I’m experienced in sewing and the store has a team of three skilled seamstresses who can undertake jobs ranging from the simple shortening of trousers or dresses through to a complete fitting of a wedding dress.
“My focus is on delivering excellent customer service and this will be at the heart of everything we do.”
Founded in 2005, The Zip Yard is the UK’s largest garment alterations company with stores stretching from Brighton on the South Coast to Glasgow.