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Islandeady entrepreneur undeterred by Dragons’ rejection

Islandeady woman happy with Dragons’ response

Anton McNulty

‘Nothing ventured, nothing gained’ - that is the thinking of mother of three Marian McNamara as she begins her new website business less than 12 months after she was made redundant as a special needs assistant.
The Islandeady woman appeared on Sunday’s episode of Dragons’ Den where she pitched her idea of a website, www.forgottenfrocks.ie, a site dedicated to buying and selling pre-used woman’s clothing and accessories.
Unfortunately for Marian, the Dragons’ did not invest in her new venture but were positive about her idea which is now up and running and ready for business.
“I hoped to get an investment to be honest but it was a great experience being on the show and it was well produced. The Dragons were very positive and they gave me some great advice which I hope will bring the business forward,” she told The Mayo News.
The business allows women the opportunity to buy or sell pre used clothing and accessories such as Irish dancing costumes on the internet. Those selling items can upload photographs onto the website similar to persons selling items on e-bay and an added feature to the website is that items can be bought through their phone.
The website was the first in Ireland to offer this service and already Marian has received thousands of advertisements and has had to upgrade her website to deal with the demand.
Marian had worked for four years as a special needs assistant in national schools and admitted that had she not become redundant due to the cuts, she probably wouldn’t have taken the plunge and set up the website.
She came up with the idea after realising that there is a market for selling women’s clothing which can be expensive to buy new.
“I would be in general conversations with women who would spend up to €500 on an outfit for a wedding and may only wear it the once. Items like Irish dancing costumes can cost up to €1,200 and Debs dresses can also be expensive. You might only wear them once or twice and this allows you to sell them on-line. Also people might not like going into charity shops and this way people also can do it anonymously.”

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