A mum-of-one with a passion for fashion has fulfilled her lifelong ambition by opening Boscombe’s first dedicated Polish fashion store, at the Sovereign Shopping Centre.
Paulina Koczorowska left her home in Poland six years ago, with the dream of running a successful fashion business.
Her budding womenswear empire started with a humble market stall called Mint Sisters, which opened at the Sovereign Shopping Centre just five months ago.
The business has enjoyed such success that now Paula has expanded into a retail unit, giving Mint Sisters its own shop front within Sovereign Shopping Centre.
Paulina, 32, now hopes more people in Bournemouth will get into Polish fashion with its distinct modern style, and is looking to take on another staff member later this year.
She said: “I opened up the market stall five months ago and had such a fantastic reaction. I needed more space and now I have the shop.
“It’s a dream come true – I’ve always dreamed about this. Since I came to England I’ve worked hard and saved up to open my own shop.”
Paulina said she usually stocks only a limited number of each item she stocks, so her customers know they are buying something unusual and are unlikely to run into someone wearing the same outfit.
She added: “We need more people to see we have really nice clothes from Poland. It is a very unique style, really different.
“We might have three or four things in the same style, so no one has the same clothes on.
“They come from different companies in Poland so people get a really individual style.”
Paulina added: “It’s hard work. I’m working seven days a week. I do all the deliveries and the service in store.
“From the summer I want to hire one person part time.”
Paulina, whose store caters for sizes 6-14, has been delighted by the positive feedback she’s received from customers, particular younger women who have warmed to the unique Polish style.
She said: “I’ve had an amazing response and a lot of people coming in. A lot of young people have been coming in and saying the style is really different and they like that.
“I find Thursday to Sunday are the busiest days.
“I hope things will get bigger and bigger. If this shop is a success I want to open up another in Bournemouth.
“I need to make my website now because people keep saying to me do you have one so that is my next step.”
Sovereign Shopping Centre Manager Peter Ruscoe said: “We’re absolutely delighted to welcome Paulina and her store, Mint Sisters, to the Sovereign Shopping Centre.
“Her store provides a really unique fashion offer for female customers and I’m sure it will go from strength to strength in the coming months.”
Hard work has never been an issue for Paulina who was used to working from 9am until 1am the following day in order to make her dream a reality.
The mother-of-one, receives help in the store from her sister Daria when she’s not working.
Paulina explained: “Me and my sister have always been into fashion and had wanted to open a shop to show people we have really nice stuff.
“When I came over to Bournemouth six years ago I was working long hours every day on the seafront selling ice cream and doughnuts.
“First I saved money for a house and then I saved for my dream. Now me and my future husband are saving together for our wedding in July.
“There has been a lot of saving for everything!”
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