Finding the perfect wedding dress of your dreams and ensuring you stay within budget can be a tricky task. But if you head to the gorgeous Bristol Bridal Boutique I am sure the lovely Laura will be able to assist.
The Bristol Bridal Boutique stocks the most glamorous and swoon worthy designer dresses with up to 50% off of the RRP. Laura creates a super special experience for her brides too and today shares some valuable words of wisdom on how to find that dress.
Hi Laura, could you firstly tell WWW readers a little bit about you?
My name is Laura McFadden, I love wedding dresses and I am the owner of Bristol Bridal Boutique – a business I run from my home in Bristol selling beautiful sample and preloved designer wedding dresses, all of which have up to 50% off their RRP. They are by some of the best and most respected designers in the business – Suzanne Neville, Jenny Packham, Stewart Parvin, Caroline Castigliano, Sassi Halford, Rita Westenius, to name a few. My website www.bristolbridalboutique.co.uk has all the gowns I have in stock and their price and description. If any of the dresses are to a bride’s liking they should get in touch with me to arrange a fitting.
What do you love and dislike about your job?
I love brides finding a dress they love – pure and simple! Obviously it is great if they buy the dress but actually when they find a style, fabric, designer they like it feels so good to see their happy faces! Especially if they are in the early stages of their search as quite often the clients I have can feel worried that they won’t feel comfortable or themselves in a wedding dress. Quite often they leave feeling quite the opposite. I also love it when new stock arrives and I get to swoon over the new gowns while photographing them for the website.
I don’t think there is anything I really dislike – but as anyone who owns a small business might tell you – every now and then ‘business fear’ can set in! I deal with this by injecting more energy and passion into my brand and trying to get my name out there more.
How did you get into the wedding industry?
I worked in TV for 8 years and after having my babies I decided I wanted to indulge my love of wedding dresses and start a business from home that could work around family life. I realised there was a gap in the market in the West Country for a business selling purely samples and once-worn dresses – and Bristol Bridal Boutique was born. In 2009 I bought my own Jenny Packham gown as a sample and during my search the seed was sown for my eternal love of wedding dresses. It was obviously very lucky that I found my perfect dress as a sample and therefore at a great discount, but there is a huge market for these dresses as so many people can’t afford to pay £2-3k plus for their dress. I also like that it is making use of dresses that have already been made, are in good condition and might otherwise be shut away in a store room. It is budget friendly and there are an abundance of designer gowns crying out for a bride to wear them. A wedding day is such an important moment in a woman’s life and they should feel fabulous whatever their budget.
Tell us about your typical working day.
No one day is the same – that is the most typical thing! Some days I am tapping furiously into my laptop responding to emails. Some days if I have new stock in I am photographing all the dresses for the website which I love as I get to really explore each dress. My favourite days are client days when I have fittings booked in and excited brides and their friends/family come to try on lots of dresses in the hope of finding their dream dress. But most days I am looking after my little ones and trying to focus on them and not get tempted to dive into the world of wedding dresses!
If you could choose another role in the wedding industry what would it be?
I love this question! I think I would have to choose wedding dress designer – being able to have a vision of a gown and have the talent and technical knowledge to actually create it and have someone wear it on their wedding day would be very exciting and gives me goose bumps thinking about it. As food is my other passion I would also have to say that making cakes for weddings would be very special. I also love the idea that such a thing of beauty is then devoured so quickly by cake-hungry guests! Among my dress-related boards on my Pinterest page I have one dedicated to cakes… I have spent quite a lot of time pinning that board!
What do you aim to achieve for your clients?
One of the main reasons I started my business was to create a relaxed, informal and fun environment for any brides coming to try on dresses. I also aim to be as honest as possible about the state of all of my dresses. I hope that brides would also find that I am honest and helpful when suggesting gowns that they might like. I always want a bride to try on the dress that she thinks she doesn’t want to try on. My first experience of a client welling up happened when she tried on a strapless gown having told me absolutely that she didn’t want to wear a strapless gown. Suffice to say she did buy the strapless gown!
What are the style of the dresses you stock? How would you describe your style in three words?
Most of the dresses are vintage inspired or classic couture gowns. My own style is casual, classic and hopefully a bit elegant!
Could you tell us some information about your packages/prices?
All the dresses at Bristol Bridal Boutique have up to 50% off their RRP and the prices range from £300 – £1500
Do you have any tips for brides finding their dress?
Follow your own instinct when choosing a dress for your wedding day. Only take someone with you to fittings who will encourage your thoughts and opinion. Quite often I hear friends and family say things like ‘I don’t like one-shouldered gowns’ or ‘I think low backs are too revealing’. I think this is so unfair for the bride-to-be! We don’t all like the same things and as soon as someone puts a seed of doubt into the air it often means the bride doesn’t feel comfortable saying how much she likes a dress. Just saying :) Trust the feeling in your belly. Stop looking once you have found your dress!
Are you seeing any trends for the year ahead?
Separate bridal pieces are very popular courtesy of some extremely fashion forward and incredibly talented bridal wear designers like Laure de Sagazan. Lace sleeves – short and long – still seem to be in demand which I can only think still comes from the Duchess of Cambridge’s beautiful McQueen by Sarah Burton wedding dress. As I am in the business of samples I have the privilege of seeing so many different styles and I have always thought that no matter what trends are going on in the magazines – brides have quite clear ideas about what they like and aren’t especially guided by seasonal fashion changes.
How can we get in touch with you?
Our homepage: http://bristolbridalboutique.co.uk
Email: [email protected]
Mobile: 07939 598 489
How utterly stunning.
If you pop over to the Bristol Bridal Boutique site you can take a peek at the gowns available and get in touch with Laura to book your appointment to try some on. EEkk xo Lou
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |
Photos | Ruth Garner Photography
Model | Rachel Harvey
Hair and make-up | Grace Kingsley
Bouquet | Emma Norton Wedding Flowers
Hair accessories | Vintage Button Bridal Designs
Styling | Kirsten Butler – The Little Wedding Helper