Tuesday, November 29, 2011
2011... Has it been a good year for you? It has been a fairly good year for Rushville Bridal Boutique. There have been some ups and downs but feel confident that things are moving in the right direction for 2012.
So as I am looking forward to the beginning of a new wedding season this spring, I thought I would take this chance to review some of the best selling gowns from 2011. As most of you are aware, bridal designers will bring out new designs each season but carry over the most popular styles. These gowns are the ones that a large number of brides selected for their special day.
I will start with my best selling designer, Mary's Bridal. This company names each of their designer collections aptly telling what types of gowns this company produces. Which one will suit your wedding style: The Fairy Tale Princess Collection, Unspoken Romance Collection, Couture d'Amour Collection, Moda Bella Collection, Informal Princess Collection or the Beloving Collection. Each collection is designed with a different type of bride in mind.
The first favorite with many brides is from the Fairy Tale Princess Collection. This collection mostly features large skirts, trains and embellishments. Our style 8001 is a taffeta ballgown with metallic embroidery on the pleated wrap bodice. Also pictured from the Fairy Tale Collection is style 5217, an organza dropped waist gown with pearl, beads and sequins.
The third gown is from the Moda Bella Collection. These gowns feature some of the same details as the other collections, just in a smaller amount. This reductions in embellishments will also reduce the price of the gown which many brides like. This gown is a satin a-line gown with lace appliques on a split front ballgown. This is one of the gowns in our collection of plus size gowns in our store.
The final picture is actually from Mary's prom collection. This gown became so popular in white it has now been added to the Informal Beloving Collection. The Informal Collection has the same detail to styling as the bridal gowns but without the long train. Many brides planning outdoor weddings prefer to not have a long train and this also reduces the price. This is one of my favorite informal gowns. The silky satin is so soft and the rhinestone encrusted bodice is brilliant!
This is just a very small viewing of the gowns we have in stock from Mary's. And of course we can only carry a small number of the vast amount of gowns that Mary's designs each season. If you want to see more of our gowns, please visit our facebook page at, https://www.facebook.com/pages/Rushville-Bridal-Boutique/110670907723 . To see all the Mary's gowns for 2012 and previous seasons, visit their website at http://www.marysbridal.com/
Saturday, August 6, 2011
Although I found some new and exciting ideas that I want to check out during market, what surprised me the most about the designer website is the caution or warning most have added for bridal parties. Many have flashing large bright lettering advising brides and their wedding party to not purchase gowns online. Some have even gone so far as to list websites that are illegally using images of their gowns.
I know I have posted some of these sites in the past but I think this list contains a few new ones. Here are the copycat sites that I have gathered from some of the designer websites.
I know the price can be tempting but always remember-- If it looks too good to be true, it probably is.
Thursday, August 4, 2011
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Los Angeles, California, United States of America (Free-Press-Release.com) June 18, 2011 -- Finding the perfect dress to wear on your wedding day can be a stressful process. There are literally countless bridal shops out there, and each one tries to grab your attention. There are online retailers, chain bridal stores, New York City style bridal fashion emporiums, and of course, local boutiques, not to mention the options for vintage wedding dresses. How is a bride-to-be supposed to choose the right shop for her, let alone pick out the right dress? This article will discuss the pros and cons of each of these kinds of bridal stores.
Let’s start with the “big box” style of bridal shops. These stores are often chain stores, owned by a large corporation or associated with a particular department store. They may advertise their wedding dresses in newspaper ads or television commercials. These stores may seem like a good option at first, but the truth is, they are actually the worst place to find something as important as your wedding gown. That’s because these large stores believe in a “one size fits all” approach to bridal fashion. They have poor selection, and their dresses, while sometimes inexpensive, are made from cheap or flashy material, often cut in styles from two or three seasons ago. Plus, these kinds of bridal shops are notorious for “pushing” their sales. To them, brides are only a number, one customer of many to be shoved into an ill-fitting, cheap dress, and then shoved out the door.
The corporate chain stores are definitely out, then. So what about those little online vintage bridal retailers that you see popping up on crafting and auction websites? Again, the lower price may make these bridal shops seem like a good option at first, but you must consider all the factors. The best kind of vintage clothing is what is called “old stock” vintage. This means that the clothes were never worn, so they are in good condition. True old stock wedding dresses are incredibly rare. Most so-called “vintage” gowns are actually just used wedding dresses from ten or fifteen years ago. Not only are these dresses out of style, but they may also have tears, stains or other flaws. Plus, because they are available from an online retailer, you can’t try them on ahead of time. Imagine ordering a “vintage” dress only to receive something that is covered in stains and two sizes too small! These online vintage “bargains” just aren’t worth it.
So if you can’t trust the big corporate stores, or the small online vintage retailers, what’s left? Only the best option for finding beautiful, affordable wedding dresses: local independent boutiques. Local boutiques are the perfect place to find bridal wear because their small size allows them to devote more time, care and attention to each bride who walks in the door. Also, because they are independent, they are able to showcase gowns from a variety of designers, including European couture collections. Best of all, small boutiques have a low overhead, so they are able to consistently offer the very latest bridal designs from the best runway shows.
Now that you know the facts about all of the different kinds of bridal retailers, it should be clear where you can go to find the best dresses for your special day. Skip the crowded malls and the sketchy online stores, and pay a visit to a local, independent bridal boutique. You’ll be glad you did.
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As always, please remember every independent store has a different style and feel. If you are not comfortable with the first, second or tenth store, keep searching. There is one out there just for you. The two worst things I have heard while being in this business for 15 years are:
1. I hated the store and the consultant but I paid them $700 for my wedding gown.
I just don't understand why you would pay someone you don't like or trust with
your hard earned money. If you find the perfect gown at the wrong store, find
out where else the gown is available. Yes, this is tricky to do at some stores, but
usually not impossible.
Don't make a once in a lifetime decision under pressure. Go home think it over
and look at what options are available to you.
2. I wish I had come here first.
I hear this almost once a week. Sometimes from brides who have purchased all
the gowns and just need a few accessories but usually from brides who come
with their fiance to select tuxes. Again, don't ever feel pressured into making a
decision! If you are not comfortable with anything about your purchase, wait
for a later time. I know there are many stores that make all kinds of promises
and give big discounts but only on the first visit. But is saving 20% worth
months of frustration? This is suppose to be one of the most exciting times of
your life and you definitely don't need any added stress. So it is better to sleep
on your decision than to rush into a bad one.
Thursday, June 16, 2011
I just received the new Brides magazine in the mail. I always like to look at the gowns to see if the trends are changing and what seems to be popular. But for the past couple of years, I have been very disappointed with the choices from Brides. All the gowns that are featured in their stories are VERY expensive, usually over $5000!! I know that I do not see too many brides looking for gowns in that price range in middle America. If you are, know that I can get you one but the majority of my customers are in the under $1000 group. So I was excited to see a page titled "Gowns for Less". They selected 3 gowns for under $1000 which sounds good until you see the styles. One is a very plain informal with no beading and no train. Beautiful gown just pricey for the style. I would suggest the P.C. Mary's informal #2210 for 30% less. It has the same one shoulder style, flowing chiffon fabric and a small floral applique on the bodice. Unfortunately, Mary's will not allow anyone to copy images from their website, so I cannot include a picture. But this is a gown that I have in stock in the store for anyone wanting to see it. I also found a gown from Forever Yours , style #310201 that is 36% less than the one in the magazine. I do not have this gown in stock but can special order the gown in sizes 1-30.
The second gown is a short strapless gown with an overall lace. Once again Forever Yours has a similar gown for about 15% less. The style is #411105. Davinci Bridal also offers a short gown with floral design. There is much less lace which makes the price over 40% less. Both of these are great gowns if you are looking for a short gown.
OK, the third gown was a hard find. I don't really have any designers with floral printed wedding gowns. But if designers think this is going to be a big trend, they will all have one by next season!! After all this is how David's bridal got started in the wedding gown business. I really hate sending customers to David's since I know they produce poor quality gowns but the closest I can come to the floral print is with some floral prom gowns.
I would also like to suggest some other wedding gowns under $1000. These are not informal gowns but wedding gowns with beading, lace, appliques and a full train made of luxurious fabrics like bridal satin, taffeta and organza. First is Forever Yours Bridal. In their entire collection, they have one gown that is over $1000. So you can select from any of the other designs for less than $1000. Overall, this is my favorite company for fabric, fit, shipping and style.
I can also suggest all of the gowns in the Davinci Bridal line. This company offers fewer styles but great construction. The inner panel really makes a good fit for all sizes. They also have the immediate shipping option for quick wear dates.
The third option is P.C. Mary's Bridal. They have about 10 gowns in their line over $1000 in the Karelina Sposa Exclusive designs. All their other gowns are under $1000. Most of the gowns are in the $500 to $700 range. They use wonderful fabric and beautiful beading and appliques. Mary's has also been really good with having stock at their warehouse to ship immediately for quick weddings.
So go ahead and indulge yourself with looking at the beautiful gowns shown in Brides Magazine. But remember that the gown of your dreams is still attainable for much less that those shown. Also don't think that your only option is ordering online from a cheap knock-off site. Give your full service, local bridal salon a try. You will be amazed at what they are able to do for you!!
Tuesday, May 31, 2011
Here is another website with more discount sites to avoid. http://www.bridesaware.co.uk/index.htm There are several comments from brides who are giving advice on which sites to avoid. It is worth reading before taking the chance.
Thursday, May 26, 2011
Of course, everyone wants to believe the best when they see a beautiful gown online at a much reduced rate. Many customers feel it is worth the risk. But one blogger doesn't agree and will even go as far as calling out the reputable sites. Below is only one of the many articles found on the subject.
Five Wedding Dress Sites Slammed by SiteJabber.com
Since increasing numbers of couples are meeting online, its should come as no surprise that many brides-to-be are turning to the web to find that perfect wedding dress, and Consumer Ally partner SiteJabber.com has reviewed a number of those sites.
SiteJabber.com helps consumers avoid bad websites and steers them toward good ones through positive or negative user reviews. The SiteJabber community shared some eye-opening comments about five wedding dress sites in particular.
The sites -- all of which are based in China -- received poor reviews due to a number of complaints, including wrong sizes and styles delivered to brides, cheap materials, shoddy workmanship, terrible customer service and one dress that reeked of fish.
Here are the SiteJabber reviews, including comments from readers, some of which we've edited for space constraints:
Despite the name, Beautifulbridaldress.com take users to a site named "Kissbrides.com." The site received 5 reviews and just one star from SiteJabber users.
Here's what Virginia L. had to say:
Don't buy anything from this website! Caution with (beautifulbridaldress) bought a dress for my daughter, got a totally different dress than the one we picked and she loved, it smelled of fish, wrinkled beyond belief! And they sized it wrong, i have pictures of the dress i picked versus what i got. I am disputing it through Pay Pal because they only wanna give me a $50 refund versus the $160 i paid. i will continue to dispute and give comments every day for the rest of my life if i don''t get my refund. My daughter is so upset and her wedding is june 11. This is close. Never again! These are the type of companies that ruin it for others!
Milanoo.com received 52 reviews from SiteJabber users -- including a couple who posted their entire, unsatisfactory chat sessions with customer service reps -- and two stars. Here's what Carly F. had to say:
I ordered my maid of honor's bridesmaid dress on this website and did not realize they were in China until I got my order confirmation. Several weeks after ordering the dress, I read reviews on the milanoo.com website and became terrified of what the dress was going to look like when I got it. Good thing I prepared myself!! The dress's hem line was crooked, and it had a sewing pin sewed inside!! Also, the bottom half of the skirt wasn't sewed on, so I had to take it to a seamstress. I will NEVER order from this site again, and I WOULD NEVER RECOMMEND THIS WEBSITE TO ANYONE, EVER!!!!!!
Please do NOT order from this site!!! They do not even have HALF the colors their color chart says they have. This is a company in China and cannot be trusted. I ordered bridesmaid dresses which came wrong size and color and was told I would get a 30% refund that I never received. Trust me, look elsewhere or borrow from a friend.
Fashionlade.com received 19 reviews and two stars from the SiteJabber community. Here's what Alysam Y. had to say about her experience with them:
Waited 8 weeks for my order of a green mother-of-bride dress to arrive. It came all tightly rolled and bundled up and wrapped in paper. What I got was absolutely disgusting - the stitching was amateurish, the sleeves were uneven, the embroidery and beading were a ghastly silver rather than green as advertised on their Website. Furthermore, they had not followed the measurements that I had given them. I emailed Fashionlande.com immediately with supporting photos and a request for a return authorization and the return address, but they never respsonded, even after 5 emails. Their 7-day return policy is bogus.
I ordered my wedding dress from this website. All I have to say is "DONT DO IT" Thank God I have kept my composure and not turned into Bridezilla. I ordered for 2 months because my wedding is not until April of 2011. I got it within 3 weeks and it was delivered in a USPS bag, not a box. But folded tightly and stuff in a bag. I paid $345 for a "replica" of an Alfred Angelo dress and I got a VERY POORLY made party dress, not a bridal gown in my opinion. I understand I wasn't getting the exact same dress but was expecting the promised 90% look-alike stated on their website.
While not all sites will provide this substandard level of service or product, let this be a warning to shop carefully for your special day. Be sure to check online reviews -- including those from the Better Business Bureau -- of any site before making a purchases.
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Saturday, February 26, 2011
In the past couple of weeks, I have had many customers in the store looking for all types of wedding supplies. Many of them have casually commented that they have lots of time to make a decision because the wedding isn't until late April or even May. In my head, I am screaming, "WHAT ARE YOU THINKING?" That is almost no time at all to order any type of gown and times for ordering accessories is getting short.
So here is my idea for ordering bridal items:
WEDDING GOWN ORDER 6 MONTHS BEFORE WEDDING
This item usually takes the longest to order. Most gowns will run approximately 3 MONTHS to arrive in the store. Then add an additional month for alterations and you don't want the gown the day before the wedding so 6 months is a good measure.
BRIDESMAID GOWNS ORDER 4 TO 6 MONTHS BEFORE THE WEDDING
Bridesmaid gowns vary greatly by designer. A decision on the type of gown you would like for the wedding should be made at least 6 months in advance. Then depending upon the delivery schedule of the designer, the order time may be moved to 4 months before the wedding.
MOTHER'S AND FLOWER GIRL GOWNS ORDER 4 TO 6 MONTHS BEFORE WEDDING
These gowns are similar to the bridesmaid and often are by the same designers. Therefore the same lead time is needed. There are a few companies that do a good job of keeping stock for these gowns and do not require as long of time to order. But your decision on the type of gown should be made early enough to allow for the longer shipping times if needed.
TUXEDO RENTALS 6 WEEKS BEFORE THE WEDDING
All orders should be sent in to the tuxedo company at least 6 weeks before the wedding. So if you need to give your groomsmen a time to be measured, give them more than 6 weeks before the wedding. This way there is time to complete the paper work on the order.
GOWN ACCESSORIES 2 TO 3 MONTHS BEFORE THE WEDDING
This can include a veil, tiara, jewelry, slip, undergarments and shoes. Again, these items will vary with each designer and store. Just make your decisions early to avoid any problems.
CEREMONY ACCESSORIES 2 TO 4 MONTHS BEFORE THE WEDDING
These items will vary depending upon engraving. If you want items engraved with names or dates, the longer lead time will be needed.
Only you can determine this order time. Delivery from the printer will be approximately one month. Then add the time needed to address invitations, mail them and how many weeks in advance you want the guest to receive it.
CAN YOU GET THINGS QUICKER?
Sure, but just be prepared to select from a limited amount of designers or pay a rush fee. Rush fees are available for some gowns and can cost up to $100 per wedding gown and $50 per bridesmaid.
MY BEST ADVICE
Shop early or be flexible!!! And what do I mean by early, at least one year before the wedding date. If you don't have a year to shop, be flexible!!!