Things are looking good for fashion designer Klaudia Małolepsza.
The latest addition to Sunderland’s flourishing cultural scenes has launched her own business, KM Fashion, with support from the North East Business and Innovation Centre (Bic).
I came to Sunderland knowing that I wanted to establish my business here, as I know that the people are open-minded and I’ve been made to feel very welcome.
Klaudia, 32, made the move to Sunderland from her native Poland to follow her dream and establish her own fashion business.
Although she finds the culture here very different to what she’s used to, she believes that now is the ideal time to start a business in the UK: “As a fashion designer, stylist and artist with a passion for designing clothes, shoes, handbags and jewellery, I think I came to Sunderland at a very good time,” she said.
“I’ve heard a lot about Sunderland’s UK City of Culture bid and feel it’s an exciting time to be in the city, and an interesting opportunity for me.
“I came to Sunderland knowing that I wanted to establish my business here, as I know that the people are open-minded and I’ve been made to feel very welcome.”
In the perfect location for her business, Klaudia also has the skills, creativity and single-mindedness to succeed.
“This is my passion, it’s what I love to do so I don’t consider failure as an option,” she said.
“Opening my business has come from my determination and the fact I really wanted it – I’m so focused.”
Klaudia worked with BIC Business Adviser Ron Anderson who helped her to develop a business plan and supported her through the New Enterprise Allowance, a national government initiative to support new businesses.
After attending business planning sessions with Ron, Klaudia received the mentoring she needed to register her new business.
“At the beginning it felt daunting but Ron helped me through the whole process,” she said.
“Anyone who is thinking of establishing their own business should consider contacting the BIC.”
Ron added: “Klaudia has worked extremely hard and has overcome many barriers and setbacks to get her business up and running.
“Klaudia is clearly very passionate and determined to succeed in all that she does. She is an extremely talented designer and I am delighted she has become self-employed to enable others to benefit from the high standard of clothes, shoes, handbags and jewellery she produces.”