When the pandemic hit many independent retailers were forced to close shop, sit tight and wait for restrictions to end but Leigh Unwin, founder of The Style Attic and mum of two, used this opportunity to expand her business.
For most of us, this month marks the milestone of one year working from home, but for trendsetter Leigh, everyone else was simply following in her footsteps as it's been six years since she gave up her full time job in fashion to launch her own business from the attic of her home in Leeds.
In 2014 Leigh welcomed her baby girl Edie to the world at just 25 weeks, weighing a tiny 710g. After a tough six months in hospital, she was finally allowed home but Leigh knew that Edie’s arrival meant that her hectic work schedule had to change, “I realised that however glamorous it seemed, full time work in the fashion industry was no longer for me, although I knew I couldn’t give up on my passion completely.”
Leigh needed to find a way of following her fashion career, whilst juggling little Edie’s hectic diary of appointments, with this in mind, The Style Attic was born.
This exciting venture saw Leigh lean upon her keen eye for buying to source womenswear must-haves. A visit to The Style Attic would see customers return home armed with the latest in casual wear, evening wear, shoes and accessories.
As well as the array of styles that suit all shapes and sizes, the unique location of the shop was another talking topic for customers. Leigh said, “Initially the idea of knocking on someone's door and walking through the house to an attic seemed quite strange, but luckily the word started to get around and those customers kept coming back - often bringing a friend.”
Since then The Style Attic has gone from strength to strength. With the opening of her new shop in 2015, Leigh no longer has to guide customers through her house to secure the latest styles.
Not one to shy away from trends, when the pandemic hit in 2020 and everyone moved online, so did The Style Attic. Her affordable fashion began to reach more customers than ever before as Leigh continues to prove that you can still support local businesses and stay home.
“The support we’ve received so far has been amazing and I am so thankful for everything we’ve achieved so far. As a fashion buyer you are always looking for the latest trends on the market and as a business owner I am exactly the same. The fashion market is incredibly competitive, especially online, but it motivations me to look for new and innovative ways to grow and build The Style Attic brand and introduce our womenswear offering to even more customers – all the while making them feel amazing and confident in our range.”