A Blantyre tattoo artist who set up her own business last year has already expanded her premises and team after she received support from Business Gateway.

Chloe Isaac launched the Self Love Club Tattoo studio on Carluke High Street in 2022 after years spent tattooing part-time while studying a criminal law degree at the University of West of Scotland.

When the Covid-19 pandemic hit, Chloe moved home with her mum. During that time, her mum was struggling with her mental health, so Chloe would tattoo her every day, with each tattoo representing a self-love slogan or image.

Chloe soon realised the meaningful impact of the tattoos, which gave her mum something to reflect on and be proud of. Determined to help people feel good about themselves and raise awareness of mental illness, she sought to turn this part of her life into something positive for others and her idea for the Self Love Tattoo Club was born.

To help turn her dream for a business into a reality, Chloe approached Business Gateway for advice. She was supported with a range of services, with guidance from her local adviser, Lisa Cullen, helping her to develop her first detailed business plan.

After help from Lisa in finding and securing her premise in Carluke, she applied for the Lanarkshire Business Start Up Grant which is funded by South Lanarkshire Council and received £2500, which helped her equip her very own tattoo studio with the necessities. Chloe also accessed funding from the Elevator Foundation and was offered mentorship from Professor Gary McEwan. Most recently, Chloe was guided to apply for the E3 Give it a Go Grant of £300 that supports younger people getting into business. This provided a connection to a wider network, with other young entrepreneurs and like-minded people in her local area.

Chloe has also benefited from DigitalBoost webinars, to optimise her digital channels and increase brand awareness. The business thrives on TikTok and has accumulated an international following, with tourists all over the world wanting to come and visit the studio. Due to popular demand, Chloe has now expanded her premises buying the property next door, and hopes to make her studio even more accessible, with the addition of accessible beds and a bathroom.

Chloe uses her tattoo studio as a safe place for all walks of life to come along and feel safe and comfortable. It is a mindful space, complete with comfortability forms, privacy screens and noise cancelling headphones.

Chloe Isaac, Founder of Self Love Club Tattoo, said “I would not be where I am today if I didn't have Lisa from Business Gateway. I had no idea about planning permission, no idea about establishing a business plan or the importance of cash flow. Contacting Business Gateway is exactly what I needed to do get my business off the ground. I wouldn't have a shop if it wasn't for them.”  

Lisa Cullen, Business Gateway Manager said: “I first spoke with Chloe in May 2021 and instantly loved her character, personality and her whole business ethos. I helped her throughout each stage of the journey, from getting a Business Plan in place, being on the end of the phone to hash out any thoughts or just to be there at times when things seemed impossible. Whilst waiting on a premise becoming available, we worked on the logistics of owning a business and the legalities.”

For more information on how Business Gateway can help your business, visit https://www.bgateway.com/.  

Find out more about Chloe Isaac https://www.tiktok.com/@selfloveclubtattoo

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