Welcome to Wedding Wednesdays! For the new year I've decided to showcase some of my favorite wedding vendors, and give you a little taste of what they're all about. To kick it off, I talked to Cindy Wells, who owns Love & Lace Bridal Consignment & Boutique in Edgewater, MD. They are always getting in new dresses, and even carry selective bridal accessories like jewelry, garters, and veils. I highly recommend checking out this shop if you're searching for a gorgeous, affordable gown and a personalized shopping experience.
How did you become interested in your field?
I was introduced to bridals at 15. I went in search for a prom dress at my local bridal boutique and casually mentioned that selling bridal gowns would be fun. I went home that day with a JR prom dress and a part time job. I worked at that shop after school and on weekends.
What's your favorite part of the process?
I think my favorite part would be when we help a bride say YES to a gown that she wasn't expecting to love. Always trust your consultant!
What can people expect when they come in for an appointment?
It's actually a really laid back experience if compared to other shops. There's lots of laughs, jokes and we actually try to get to know the bride, rather than just ask obligatory wedding day details questions. People have often said how comfortable they are at my shop. It's a no-pressure environment. Sure, we would like to have the bride say YES but we really want the experience to be fun and enjoyable.
What do you wish people knew before/while shopping for a gown?
Oh, this could a long answer! I wish people knew the following:
1. Gowns take between 4-6 month to deliver. If you're not planning on purchasing off the rack then you'll need time to order.
2. Bridals run small! If you're a 6 in jeans you'll probably fit comfortably in a bridal size 8/10. So don't be discouraged if your wedding dress size tag is different from your jeans.
3. Small bridal shops are pretty much the opposite of shopping at the big box bridal chain. If you want a more intimate and custom bridal experience you really should visit small boutiques. We care A LOT more about each bride that entrusts us with their bridal gown order.
4. Please bring only the people whose opinion you truly value. To put it simply...."too many hands in the pot, spoil the soup!" Having large groups of people at your appointment often ends with the bride feeling discouraged and defeated. And if you MUST bring 13 people to your appointment, bring your backbone!
What sets Love & Lace apart from other boutiques and consignment shops?
I'm a little biased, but our selection is great. We don't have 1000 gowns but the ones we do have are pretty amazing. I handpick every single dress that come into my shop and when I shop for samples I always keep the customer in mind. Its quality over quantity. Our staff is small and we really do care about each bride's experience. And like I said, we are a no-pressure environment - you'll never get a guilt trip from us if you don't buy, and if we cannot help someone they will never leave thinking we didn't try our very best.