After spending most of her childhood in Fredericton, New Brunswick, Dominique Leger had her sights set on the big city. Upon graduating high school, she immediately moved to Toronto on her own at 17 and enrolled in the International Academy of Design and Technology. After graduating, New Brunswick called Dominique back home and she settled in Moncton to start a career in retail, working her way up from sales associate, to assistant manager, to store manager, and was eventually offered an opportunity to relocate to Ottawa, Ontario to gain experience in merchandising—a dream for Dominique.
Packing her things up in a U-Haul, she headed off to Ottawa, where her dream job was exactly how she expected it to be, but unfortunately the company eventually decided to eliminate the position due to project completion and budget cuts, and Dominique had to take a hard look at what was next—moving back to New Brunswick, or stepping back down to her store manager role she held previously. She decided to leave Ottawa and realized that her retail career was over—Dominique wanted a Monday to Friday, 9-5 job, so she set her sights on an office job, as she felt that was her new dream and passion.
After landing her first desk job, she struggled because she just wasn’t passionate about the industry. “I had a hard time not doing something different every day,” Dominique explained. “I missed the face-to-face interaction with complete strangers, the hustle, the sales goals, the seasonal change overs, and even the holiday season chaos.” It was evident that Dominique missed her life in the fashion and retail industry. “I knew that’s where my heart was and I somehow had to find my way back, I just didn’t know how to do it unless I took a retail job or opened a full time, all day, every day boutique, and neither of those seemed quite right,” Dominique said.
Her longing to be back in the fashion industry, landed her an opportunity with StartUp Fashion, a New York City based company. Dominique was hoping that this would cure her blue, and it did, for a while. After working as a community manager responsible for social media content, as well as a retail editor on their website which allowed her to come up with new industry related content every week, at the end of the day, she was still craving more.
After spending some time in Boston one summer, she stumbled upon a market called SoWa, that had over 30 different food trucks on any given weekend—and this is where Dominique’s wheels started turning. “We were wandering the market and I noticed a plain looking white truck off by itself, clearly not serving food but with a crowd of women standing around outside,” Dominique described. “I had just enough time to stick my head in and notice two racks of clothes before we had to leave, and noticed the name to Google the truck when I came home.” When Dominique found herself back at home Googling the fashion truck she spotted at the market, bells, and whistles started going off at the same time. “I found it. A mobile boutique. That was it, the inspiration I’d been looking for,” Dominique explained her feeling.
From Dominique’s path to discovering what she wanted to do with her passion for fashion, In Pursuit Mobile Boutique was born. In Pursuit is a bright pink truck filled to the brim with the latest in women’s apparel and accessories—the first and only mobile boutique serving Eastern Canada. Dominique describes the boutique as being the fashion truck for lady bosses, go-getters and rockstar girlie girls who know a good thing when they see one, and when you see In Pursuit popped up on the street side, it’s hard to miss.
After overcoming the barriers with City Hall around their by-law that stated it was illegal to operate a business on a street or sidewalk in Saint John, by getting enough people to come together and agree to create a policy or procedure for her to get a proper permit from the city, In Pursuit finally had the chance to hit the road. “There were so many people on board with the idea and concept from the beginning that saw the vision and were open-minded enough to realize that mobile is potentially the future for many different types of businesses,” Dominique explained.
For others who are trying to find a career path that is fulfilling, Dominique says: “Just do it! Follow your heart and make your dreams come true. Don’t take no for an answer. Persistence, patience and a little bit of stubbornness will take you everywhere.”
For more information on Dominique’s business and story, click here.
Written By: Lauren Marinigh, Social Media & Content Creation Coordinator, Futurpreneur Canada