We Love What We Do
We love what we do and are committed to giving first class customer service. We love what we do and will treat you as our most important customer. We will go flat out to create a memorable and special experience for you.
So, what can brides-to-be expect?
When you arrive we will greet you warmly and confirm when your occasion is, where it is, what style you have in mind and how much you’re looking to spend. That allows us to ensure you have all the information you need to make a decision.
It’s important at this stage to be realistic: if you’ve set a strict budget for your dress it will be potentially upsetting to fall in love with one that costs twice as much. But whatever your limit, the chances are we’ll easily bring you in within budget… and, more often than not, well under. Once we have an idea what you’re looking for, we’ll explain what we have in stock and let you delve through our extensive range of dresses to see what takes your fancy.
You can try as many dresses as you want, but your preferred style and the time available will normally dictate how many. We allocate a minimum of 2 hours for each bridal appointment on week days and one and a half hours at weekends. Customers have the privacy of our fitting rooms to dress themselves, often with the help of a companion …but we are still on hand if you need help to dive into a dress and, of course, for the doing-up part.
Once you’re in the dress and happy enough to come out of the fitting room to take a better look in our large mirrors, we’ll walk with you to the ‘magic box’. It adds height and allows you to see how the dress will look once the hem is custom fitted.
At this point we’ll chat through with you how the dress looks and feels, how it complements your figure and any improvements that we might recommend. If you are happy and this is potentially the dress for you we’ll then look for a suitable bridal tiara or hairpiece. Sparkle in your hair helps lift the sparkle in your dress and helps light it up.
We’ll also try a veil. Don’t under-estimate the power of the veil! We see a lot of brides who say they don’t want to wear a veil, but when they try one on they instantly change their minds. A veil helps to frame a dress and it creates a dream-like halo. It can add extra sparkle and detail to the back of the dress and act as a comfort blanket to those who aren’t confident in exposing their shoulders and upper arms. You’d be amazed how many brides (and their mums) are moved to tears when the veil goes on!
Assuming we’ve found the dress to match your dreams, we’ll measure you or agree a date when to measure and have your dress made.
Many brides who have planned well in advance like to have the benefit of another month or two to reach their perfect bridal shape and weight (or be on track to achieve it). Where this is the case, we will tell you the last possible date to get your dress on order, agree a date with you to come back for final measurements, and take a 30% deposit to secure the design with the designer (that is, to place the order but without the size).
Once final measurements are made, we will agree with you when you would like your dress in the shop – a minimum of 12 weeks before the wedding and a maximum of one year – and request a 50% deposit to place the order for your dress to be made.
As soon as your dress is received from the Designer (normally within 3 weeks either way of the estimated date of arrival we quoted when you ordered) we contact you to book an initial fitting of the dress.
If the dress has arrived within 6 weeks of the actual wedding date we book you straight in with the dressmaker; if not, we ask you to come in and try the dress to make sure it is where-we-expected-it-to-be. e.g. that you haven’t bizarrely grown five inches in height since we took your final measurements!
From the initial fitting we will have a really good idea of any final nips and tucks that may be needed just before the wedding to make your dress perfect. Following the fitting we will book you an appointment with our Dressmaker and let you know what you will need to bring with you.
By the time of your initial fitting you’ll probably have a good idea of how you will be wearing your hair on the day, your dress will be fitting well (all bar the finishing touches), so now will be the time to decide on shoes, hairpieces, veils, gloves, jackets, etc…
Once we’ve agreed a plan of action with regard to alterations and accessories, we will ask you to clear the remaining 50% of your balance, or plan with you when the balance will be cleared.
Alterations cannot be made and dresses released before the balance is cleared.
Fitting with Dressmaker:
We recommend that you see the Dressmaker between 6 and 8 weeks before the wedding.
At 6 weeks before your wedding you will be close to the body shape and weight you will be on the day of the wedding.
Remember we already had an initial fitting so we know what to expect and we have forewarned the dressmaker to ensure the work is scheduled.
At the fitting, the Dressmaker will take exact instructions as to the alterations required to make the dress perfect for you and will quote a price and time frame to you.
You are not obliged to use our dressmakers and are free to source your own seamstress for any required alterations. This does not affect your rights with regards to storage and final steaming of the dress before the big day, and you are welcome to pick up the dress and drop it back to us by prior arrangement. However if you do use your own seamstress we cannot guarantee to assist in cases of damage or dispute.
This is normally managed directly between the bride and the dressmaker. Payment is made to the dressmaker once you are happy with the fit of your dress and it should be in-line with the quote you received at the initial fitting.
This approach saves everyone time and money. The dressmakers are normally willing to see you outside the shop’s normal opening times and are able to give you their undivided attention. If, however, you are not happy or it’s not convenient to visit the dressmaker direct, we will be happy to facilitate the process in its entirety in the shop.
The purpose of the final fitting is to make sure that the dress fits you perfectly. It’s important that you speak up if there’s anything you’re not happy with: the dressmakers can work wonders and they want, as much as we all do, for you to look perfect and feel wonderful on your great day.
Once you’ve agreed with the dressmaker that you are happy with your dress, the dress will be delivered back to the shop by the dressmaker for final preparation.
Not all dresses will necessarily require a final steam. If you’re ecstatic with your dress and just can’t wait to get it home, you are welcome to collect it direct from the dressmaker. If, however, you don’t want the stress of storing your dress until the wedding, we are more than happy to store it (and in most cases we do so).
It’s important to us that all our dresses and brides are treated superbly; we maintain regular contact with the dressmaker during the alterations process to make sure everything is going to time and plan. If, at any point in the process you are not happy or sure with the plan, then it’s really important to let us know in the shop as soon as possible.
This is the sad part for us and the exciting part for you! In making your appointment with the dressmaker, we will have agreed a date and time with you to pick up your dress (or dresses).
This isn’t set in stone and should you need or want to bring the date forward or push it back then just let us know in plenty of time.
Two days before your pick up we will give your dress a final inspection and steam, letting it dry freely overnight.
When you pick up your dress we will make sure you understand how it should be hung for transportation, what you need to do when you get home and how your dress should be done up on your wedding day.
There is nothing worse than an incorrectly corseted dress, even a zipped dress can cause unnecessary stress on the wedding day if it is not done up properly. So pay attention, and make enough time on the day!
Then its hugs and kisses and pleas from us to see your wedding pics when you finally return to Earth!
Short-term parking (if only a couple of minutes) is available to the front of the shop and we’ll help you load your dress in the car to cause the least amount of creasing.
Allow enough room in the car to get your dress hanging flat – for instance, from the rear suit jacket hook and across the entire back seat, or across the passenger seat folded down to the flat or near flat position. Don’t plan to pick up the monthly shop from Tesco’s on your way home – and ideally don’t load the car with dogs and children!