Jessica Martin, 23, owner of on Tompkins Avenue, is finding it hard to be a young designer and entrepreneur in such an unstable economic climate.
Martin says she’s only broke even six months out of the nine she’s been in business, according to NYCity News Service. Martin and her mother spent their savings securing the storefront, and the designer believes she may have to resort to bartending at night to pay the bills.
A self-taught seamstress, Martin’s work has appeared in 70 fashion shows, according to the report. She specializes in form-fitting dresses, but also designs jackets, skirts and corsets.
Nippy Laverne (the store is named after Martin’s grandmother) and other Tompkins Avenue businesses got a boost this past August with the which featured live music and food, and gave a chance for business owners on the street to mingle with residents.
For now, Martin’s future with Nippy Laverne is still uncertain.