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2010, Sussex Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Award

Lockhart Weddings and Special Occasions-Amazing Gowns,
Memorable Experiences

When Alaina Lockhart went on maternity leave from her successful human resources career in 2004, she had an epiphany. While in HR, she planned several parties and thought about a career in corporate event planning. While exploring this opportunity she contacted Tammy Lee who was selling her bridal business of the same name. In October, after accessing the business’ value, Alaina Lockhart purchased the company. She said to herself, “I guess I sell dresses now!”
Alaina quickly changed the name of the business to Lockhart’s Weddings and Special Occasions “I am not just a shopkeeper. If I wanted it to be my way, I needed to invest time, money and energy.”
Today, when you step into this unique shop, you immediately feel at home. You are always greeted by a warm and friendly welcome. Staff members are charming and sincere. “I know all of our staff would lose sleep if something was not right.”
One of the aspects of choosing a dress is the style and look. Lockhart’s is known for carrying the newest and most respected collections each season. Another important aspect is trust. Their professional staff wants to help each bride make their special day memorable.
When asked to describe her vision, “I once considered multiple locations but when you do business models and measure against life balance, I like the flexibility and time to spend with my husband and children. We have room in our current location to grow.”
Alaina says that the CBDCs and Women and Business have been very helpful. “Once you are client, you have a resource there, someone to call. I participated in a lot of training, from QuickBooks to merchandising. Through Danielle Sullivan as well, we started a Women’s Network in Sussex.”
Named the Sussex Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Award 2010, Alaina says it was an amazing honour. “It was nice to share achievements with the people know you as a child, who you went to school with.”
This dynamic entrepreneur married her husband Rick in 2001 and has a seven-year-old daughter and two step-daughters. Alaina began a new business adventure with her partner Dawn called “Front Door Retreats and Adventures.”

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"I would like to thank you for picking Ben's Clothing for the retail consulting makeover.  I very much enjoyed talking to Barbara.  She has wonderful insites on what to do to refresh my store.  I was extremly excited of the ideas put together thats in my budget for now and also in the near future.
 
The 1st part of the seminar, had opened my eyes to the reality of my challenges and concerns, statistics, operating cost and marketing which is a huge part that can not be ignored. It's a must to have a list of issues to know it and control it.  This is a large part of my battles that I face but placed them in the back burner. 
 
When Barbara came into my store I wasn't sure what to expect because in the seminar she was leaning towards makeovers for a new store or toronto style store.  I had no idea that a little bit of paint in a different color will bring out what I want to promote.  She had alot of new ideas that are in the budget and I'm going to make it happen!
 
Thank you again for filling me in with the seminars that are offered.  I'm always willing to get informed and always moving forward."

- Hazel McLean


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