Susan Daly Pitt and Bond Westbury Mall, Dublin
For Susan Daly, a former banker, the move into the fashion industry was partly fuelled by frustration at the lack of smart work clothes available in Dublin.
“I had loved the clothes on offer in Australia, and when I came back to Dublin, I realised there weren’t the same options here,” she says.
Daly, 30, who began working for Arthur Andersen in Dublin as a management consultant, has always been interested in fashion but claims that she, like many others, simply went down the academic path because that was the done thing.
However, despite choosing to continue in banking during a career break in Sydney and then again on her return to Dublin, she says she knew it wasn’t really right for her.
“Deep down I knew I was not really in what I wanted to be in,” she says. “I wanted my own business. I did not want to work for a corporate.”
Still, the decision to take the plunge was a difficult one and it was only on her honeymoon, following significant prompting from her friends who were also moaning about not finding the right styles of clothes, that Daly made the definitive decision to give it a go.
Seven months later, she opened Pitt and Bond in the Westbury Mall, in Dublin, and says she couldn’t have asked for a better start in the fashion world. “The feedback has been great,” she says of the tailored formal and businesswear she stocks in the shop.
Another thing that couldn’t be better, according to Daly, is being her own boss. “It is tremendous,” she says, adding that there are obviously still stresses and financial worries, but that “the feeling of control and empowerment is fantastic”.
There are downsides too, though, and that’s her inability to switch off from work.
According to Daly, it is very difficult not to think about the business when it’s your own and fashion in particular is something that is hard to ignore. Something as simple as reading magazines, once a leisure-time activity for Daly, has now become work. She’s not grumbling too much though . . .