Some people succumb to pressure while others thrive in it. Entrepreneur, wife, mother, mentor, stylist and CEO Martha E. Berry of I’MarE Boutique has proven herself to be a diamond as obstacles and her belief in God have helped to shape her life and career.
A Franklin, Louisiana native, Berry is a woman of faith, family and fashion. Martha started her now thriving and high-profile business from the trunk of her car after being laid off from her accounting job in 2016 and a divorce would soon follow. After a successful closet sale, Martha took to styling, which led to several plus-size women seeking her expertise. The journey from uncertainty to fearlessness has now resulted in sales three times her 2020 goal, all while during a pandemic.
Berry is a recipient of a Black History Achievement Award from her hometown for being a stellar entrepreneur. Her mother helped to instill entrepreneurship in her by creating a praise dancing business when she was limited on opportunities in Franklin. From that, Martha taught several women to praise and worship God through the gift of dance. The model takes pride in showing other up-and-coming business owners they can do anything they set their minds to.
Martha has created a lane for providing trendy clothing to the plus size audience and used her personal obstacles in life as learning tools and stepping-stones to help guide her throughout her journey. From Goo Goo Atkins, Tasha Cobbs Leonard, Maranda Curtis and Shana Wilson Williams, Berry’s brand has been worn by some of the best and most notable entertainers, singers and moguls. The I’MarE Boutique has helped to birth confidence in curvy girls across the globe. Martha has a sister boutique to I’MarE Boutique called the I’ceE Collection, which is inspired by her daughter Iceland. The boutique provides cute, chic and trendy fashions for young women.
Martha credits her mother, her husband, Elliott Berry, and two daughters, Iceland and England, for their support and for encouraging her to not give up during hard times. Her latest effort to give back comes in the form of I’MarE Cares. A nonprofit organization she created to help streamline her existing activities centered around knowledge sharing, financial assistance, business development educational services, and public speaking primarily focused on building capacity in single mothers, especially those facing homelessness.
“I am proud of overcoming divorce and being successful. I am proud of being able to break generational curses by helping my daughter by gifting her a boutique, and I am proud of being not just a business owner, but a business owner who gives back to others,” Martha said.
For more information on I’MarE Cares and to shop the I’MarE Boutique, go to https://shopimareboutique.com/ and https://imarecares.com/ . To shop the I’ceE Collection, go to https://shopiceecollection.
KISH: Tell us about you..
I am an entrepreneur, wife, mother, mentor, stylist, and CEO Martha E. Berry of I’MarE Boutique. I am a Franklin, Louisiana native, a woman of faith, family and fashion. I started my now thriving and high-profile business from the trunk of my car after being laid off from my accounting job in 2016. After a successful closet sale, I started to venture into styling, which led to several plus-size women seeking my expertise. I am a woman that takes pride in showing other up-and-coming business owners they can do anything they set their minds to. I have created a lane for providing trendy clothing to the plus size audience from Goo Goo Atkins, Tasha Cobbs Leonard, Maranda Curtis and Shana Wilson. Williams, who are just a few entertainers and notables to have worn my brand.
KISH: What is your dream and how will accomplishing your dream benefit you and others?
Martha: My dream right now is to take my business to the next level by doing more manufacturing styles and more designs. It will allow me to be able to supply wholesale unique and exclusive items to other
KISH: Who or what inspired you to pursue this dream?
Martha:No one has really inspired me to attain this dream but, the constant drive to want/need my boutique to stand out amongst numerous boutiques has pushed me to have this dream. Creating my own styles will
allow me to continue to be fabulously different.
KISH: What challenges have you encountered while pursuing your dream?
Martha:I have encountered challenges with deciding on fabrics, gathering materials, and meeting deadlines for fashion seasons. It can be a hard feat learning patterns, materials, and what works best on curves and
what I should stay away from because it won’t last over time or won’t be in time to make that season’s release.
KISH: Who or what inspired you to keep pushing regardless of the challenges you’ve encountered?
Martha: My children inspire me to keep going. If I’m having a bad day, I always think about the fact that they look up to me and they are looking to me to make the right decisions day to day. So, I strive every day
to be a better person, better mom, better entrepreneur, and better boss for them. I want to continue to pave the way and let them know the sky’s the limit as long as you trust God and believe in yourself
and your passion!
KISH: Please provide final thoughts/advice for others by finishing this sentence… dream.
Martha:Whatever your dream, continue to push towards it and don’t let anyone or any competition stop you from reaching your dream. Always be your unique self and stand out! Continue to pray and trust that
God will lead you in the way you should go, despite any obstacle you may face.