I’m excited to share with you another guest blog by the lovely Kerry who owns Ivy & White Bridal Boutique in Lisburn. If you are on the search for a bridal gown that hasn’t been seen before, a dress with personality and that you ooze confidence in – then this is the place for you!
Ivy & White is a bridal brand supporting and loving the modern and free-spirited bohemian bride searching for a dress that celebrates her beauty, youth and charisma. As the bridal industry evolves we watch fashion and bridal marry together, creating the new age ‘unconventional bride.’
With an artfully curated selection of dresses available we close our eyes and imagine ‘our girl’ in her wedding dress. We want to find her something that hasn’t been seen before, a dress with personality that she can ooze confidence in.
At Ivy & White, all of our dresses have been hand-picked with our bride in mind, sourcing beautiful silk and lace designs so that our ‘bride to be’ has an ever-lasting memory of how beautiful she felt on her day.
We want to stray away from the mainstream, by creating our own bridal haven to bring creativity and inspiration to each styling session. We refer to our fitting room as ‘The boho cave’ with lots of light and airy space for you to feel comfortable in. We promise to bring the tunes and processco if you bring the party!
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO CREATE YOUR BUSINESS?
At 26 I was hitting an age when my friends were beginning to get married. As someone who has always worked in fashion, bridal was a complete grey area – I wasn’t married and had no plans on searching Pinterest for bridal gowns until my bestie started planning her wedding. As I was helping her search for a dress, I couldn’t help but think what would I wear if I was to get married. After spending months researching into the market I saw a clear gap as to what people wanted to wear on their wedding day to what was available. I drafted up a business plan and was at a crossroads applying to business consultancy firms or committing to a business that I had dreamt of in my head. I went with my head and started making contact with brands that I had been following on Instagram and fitted the aesthetic I had envisioned for Ivy & White. 10 months later and we are growing each day, which has been so lovely to watch.
TAKE US THROUGH A DAY IN THE LIFE OF YOUR BUSINESS
Every day is so different which is what I love so much about Ivy & White. Our social channels are so important, so we start the day by drafting up what we want to put out to our followers. Marketing is done by us and we have been so lucky to have a great relationship online with our brides. We then need to reply to emails, prep for our appointments that day by reading the brief sent by the customer, styled shoots, follow ups and now pick-ups. Some days are easily planned while others (Saturday) are totally crazy. We are running around trying to keep things on time – but I love the atmosphere on a Saturday and the excitement.
HAS ANYTHING SURPRISED YOU ABOUT THE JOURNEY TO CREATE YOUR BUSINESS?
I think what surprised me the most is how quickly you learn to adapt to new situations when you have your own business. You need to think on your feet – and be reactive if something doesn’t work out as you planned. There are no instructions with owning a business or going it alone. You just have to put one foot in front of the other, and learn through trial and error until it works out. There is still so much to learn but I am embracing the challenges and allowing them to prepare me for the future. I celebrate the good times, and grow from the hard times.
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE YOUR BRIDE WHO IS NEW TO THE DRESS SEARCH?
I always advise a new bride to start the search when she is ready, and not because she feels pressured into it by excited friends and family. It is such an emotional experience looking for ‘the dress’ and that emotion can become overwhelming. I would also advise brides to carefully choose who they bring to their fitting – remember not everyone has the same style and opinions can get heated. It’s good to bring someone you trust, and someone who has your interest at heart. I always recommend looking for the dress 9-12 months before your wedding. This is a good time frame to scout inspiration from different designers, try different styles and make a decision without time pressure. A gown takes 6-8 months to be made and alterations can take 1-2 months depending on what is required.
WHAT TREND WILL WE SEE IN 2019 FOR IVY & WHITE?
Ohhh, so many good things! We will see colour, as our brands start to bring champagne, blush and neutral tones to their dresses – which are gorgeous on all skin tones. We will also see beautiful embroidery, embellished beading, ruffles and silk tulle from Bo & Luca. We will see more low backs (YAYYY for the low back trend as we love our brands for them. Made with Love is the signature for this.) The veil is still going strong and we will see a collection of beautiful fine jewellery by Bo & Luca. We will also be introducing two new brands, another one exclusive to us in Northern Ireland and Ireland. These brands will see pattern lace, sequin, scuba fabric and tulle in styles you won’t have seen before. I am super excited but holding this close to my chest for now.