Local Entrepreneur is Bangor's Kirsty Allsopp

Rachel Gadd and Mayor Muir with restored furniture
An entrepreneurial young woman from Bangor has turned her talents and passion for furniture restoration and refurbishment into a business. With help from The Prince’s Trust Enterprise Programme, Rachel Gadd has just launched her exciting new venture, Dolled-Up Décor.

Having spent the last 15 years working on various items for friends and family, Rachel decided the time was right for her to capitalise on the growing popularity of “shabby chic” and finding new uses for old furniture.

“ Often clients have a sentimental attachment to a piece of furniture, but it has fallen out of use through wear and tear or changes in décor,” she explains. “ I love working with my customers to create bespoke designs for their much loved furniture.

“On other occasions if clients have something special in mind, I help source furniture and revamp it to their specifications to create a bespoke design that fits perfectly with their décor, without breaking the bank!”

The Enterprise Programme helps young people to explore and test their business ideas, work out whether self employment is right for them and start up in business, or achieve alternative goals in employment, education or training.

Rachel  heard that the Prince’s Trust offered support to young people who wanted to start a business so she decided to give them a call.  In November 2013 Rachel completed the Prince’s Trust Explore Enterprise Course which was held in the Prince’s Trust offices in Belfast.

The four day course covered everything from marketing and selling, to business finance and planning which helped Rachel decide if self-employment was for her. 

Rachel was successful in obtaining start up finance from the Prince’s Trust to enable her to start her business and would encourage any young person who has an idea that they would like to become self employed to just pick up the phone and speak to the Prince’s Trust.

“Through the Prince's Trust I have learnt how to set up and run a successful business. The funding and mentoring support gained from the Trust allowed me to realise my dream of running my own business and has helped me exceed my own expectations of what I could achieve”.

I joined Rachel at the launch as Mayor of North Down, keen to show my support for the courageous local businesswoman. “I am delighted to see Rachel’s launch Dolled- Up Décor and warmly congratulate her on having the courage and amazing expertise to establish such an innovative business which I am sure will go from strength to strength.”