Rylynn McQuillen


PHOTO CREDIT: Contributed

Age: 38.

Business & location: The Story Space (formerly Fig Leaf), Dubuque.

Founded: 2024.

Female you look up to: My mama and my sister. My mom is now retired, but she was a trailblazer in her prime — a true pioneer for making the way for young entrepreneurship. She saw her vision and jumped. My sister is a wordsmith and a corporate go-getter. She helps me strategize and make a plan. I love them both so much. I’m lucky to have them to look up to.

What inspired you to launch your business: The idea grew as we were closing Fig Leaf. We saw the retail world changing and we had to shift. We said now that it’s open and bare, we can have a party. From there, we saw a huge need for a micro event space in the tri-state area. The story is yours. Classes, studio space and micro events.

Biggest thing you’ve learned or best advice you’ve received as a business owner: Just say yes. Is it risky? Sure. But entrepreneurship, (if it’s true in your blood), will be so fulfilling.

Your advice for other female entrepreneurs: Stay true to your brand. It’s easy to get lost and compare yourself, jumping on the bandwagon of the next trend. It’s a formula you need to make for yourself. You have to be on trend, but just different enough to stand out.

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