Minerva Ibraham: ‘My 21 years at Image in Fonthill Road’

PUBLISHED: 14:18 30 May 2018 | UPDATED: 14:19 30 May 2018

Minerva Ibraham outside her shop, Image in Fonthill Road. Picture: Tom Ladle

Minerva Ibraham outside her shop, Image in Fonthill Road. Picture: Tom Ladle


Long established tailor Minerva Ibraham, 65, tells the Gazette about the origins of her business and how it became a staple of Fonthill Road in Finsbury Park.

Walking down Fonthill Road, Minerva Ibraham’s shop – Image – stands out.

For a start, the front of the shop features a beautiful assortment of flowers. They helped her get second prize in last year’s Islington in Bloom awards.

But there’s also a story behind Image. Minerva started from nothing but eventually attracted customers from as far out as Amsterdam.

She opened Image 21 years ago, in 1997. She has been practising tailoring ever since she was 12 and developed her passion from there.

Minerva worked in various boutiques and dry cleaners, building up her experience before venturing off to open her own shop in Finsbury Park.

She recalls: “I was really passionate about fashion and I really, really enjoyed it. I chose the location in Fonthill Road purely because it was up the road from where I live.

“When I first bought the shop it was derelict, a complete mess. I had to get my children and son-in-law to help me.”

For two years she was managing the shop alone, not being able to afford to hire staff.

“I sometimes used to work until three or four o’clock in the morning, just so I wasn’t letting anyone down.”

In the early days of her business she had to rely on word of mouth for custom.

She would do a lot of contract work for dry cleaners in Highgate and other locations. This, eventually, helped bring customers to her store.

Minerva continues: “I still have a lot of loyal local customers but I also get customers from far and wide.

“Believe it or not, I’ve had a girl from Amsterdam who flew over for a fitting in my store.”

Over the 21 years she has been in Fonthill Road, she has seen the street transform, apparently for the better.

“The location has changed tremendously,” she says. “It’s just so nice around here now. I mean, you can’t really compare.”

Her business focuses on tailoring and also dry cleaning. The shop does a lot of specialist dry cleaning, working with suede, leather, suits and wedding dresses. Minerva feels it is this technical knowledge that makes her business “special”.

She aims for the shop to continue offering an “excellent and caring” service – and potentially take first place in this year’s Islington in Bloom.

Latest Islington News Stories

Fri, 15:30

Violent crime in Finsbury Park has fallen since police raided a drug den surrounded by signs telling the long arm of the law to “keep out”.

Fri, 15:24

A bulletproof vest, 90 rounds of ammunition and £3,000 worth of class A drugs were seized during dawn raids in Islington yesterday morning.

Thu, 13:00

Wireless could be forced out of Finsbury Park if a campaign group’s latest efforts to see off the festival are successful.

Thu, 10:57

A woman in her 40s was raped in Finsbury Park last week, police have said.

Thu, 10:48

The faith leader who successfully overturned senior coroner Mary Hassell’s “cab-rank” system has criticised her new draft policy to consider every death in inner north London for possible fast-tracking.

Thu, 09:20

Workers on the Dover Court Estate whose heavy-duty uniforms left them “boiled alive” in the heatwave claim they were laid off for coming to work in shorts.

Wed, 17:48

A philanthropic pub owner is donating all proceeds raised at his venue in Clerkenwell this week to support kids through university in South Africa.

Wed, 16:50

Ten complaints about Islington Council to the ombudsman were upheld in the last year, a report reveals.


Fostering older teenagers means giving them the skills for life as an adult. Here, a supportive lodgings carer with Islington Council and young adult who has left care share their stories

Newsletter Sign Up

Islington Gazette twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now