24th August 2012: Limerick’s ladies are well known for their style and the city’s talented fashion graduates sweep the boards at award ceremonies - now the capital of the Mid-West has launched Ireland’s first Fashion Quarter.
24th August 2012
Limerick’s ladies are well known for their style and the city’s talented fashion graduates sweep the boards at award ceremonies - now the capital of the Mid-West has launched Ireland’s first Fashion Quarter.
The Limerick Fashion Quarter has been promoted by the retailers in the Roches Street and Catherine Street area to support the many independent stores and boutiques that are located in their district.
Grainne Vaughan, spokesperson for the Limerick Fashion Quarter said traders are working together as a brand to entice people to come into the Fashion Quarter from Limerick city and beyond.
"We want to specifically promote Limerick’s independently owned fashion & fashion orientated outlets instead of just the high street chains," she said.
"With the economic downturn, trading has been particularly difficult over the last few years. However, in the core of Limerick city centre we have a wealth of wonderful boutiques and quirky accessories and shoe stores, which have battled through and survived the recession by adapting their business model to cope with the challenges. Retailers in the Fashion Quarter recognised that we were located in a unique shopping area; you can plan a wedding entirely in these two streets alone from Ladies and Mens Dress Hire, a Travel Agent, flowers, your wedding rings, even your wedding dress and shoes! So as traders we all decided to work together and we have innovative and long term plans to truly establish this area as the heart of Limerick’s fashion trade."
Limerick City Council has backed the project initiating colourful floral displays with the retailers financing the signage to brand the Fashion Quarter which has ambitious plans to host events like outdoor fashion shows, barbecues and live music to entice shoppers into the area.
Along with attracting more customers, the Fashion Quarter has also brought traders together as they work to promote their area.
Chairperson of the Roches Street traders, Fionagh Ryan, said sales had suffered in recent years but since the signs announcing the Fashion Quarter have been erected, retailers have seen an increase in footfall.
"We have had very positive feedback from customers but we’re going to do more than just put up signs," she acknowledged. "We are working with local hotels on promotions encouraging visitors to shop in the Fashion Quarter and we’re also developing a loyalty card with discounts and special offers for our stores. We are working on a website and a Fashion Quarter phone app so our brand will be sustainable over time. Landlords operating in our area have also received interest in renting their vacant premises to shop owners because business people have heard about our brand and want to base themselves within it. So while trading is challenging, we’re confident that we’re doing the very best we can to promote ourselves.”
For further information on the Fashion Quarter please visit Catherine St & Roches St Fashion Quarter on Facebook.