HAPPY NEW YEAR!
I thought I would switch it up for the 20's and start this year with a fresh face to our website. I really hope you like it as it has taken me a least 2 weeks getting this perfected along with 5 mental break downs ( technology ehh!.) but here we are approaching our SECOND year with a slight twist on things. NEW YEAR, NEW BRANDS with CHOSEN, NEWHITE + Prea James joining our list of favourite brands. It really is such an exciting start to the new year with now 7 trunkshows back to back, three new collections arriving + some events I have planned up these bell sleeves.
Seeing as this is our first blog on a new site I thought I would add our article of Q&A's with the Ulster Tatler. If your newly engaged then HEYYYY!! hopefully this will give you a low down on our style, vibe and approach to bridal + dress shopping.
Ivy & White Q&A / Ulster Tatler
How did you get into the bridal industry, was it something you always wanted to pursue?
It was the best kind of accident falling into bridal. I had just completed a masters
and set to join a business consultancy firm but the dream of owning my own
business was very much the end game for me, I just didn’t know what my
business would be. Then one year I had several friends getting married and
although I didn’t understand much about the bridal industry – I learnt that
something was missing in style and aesthetic from listening to my friend’s stories, and began thinking what would I wear when I get married. After taking to Instagram and Pinterest to mood board the look I discovered so many brands that were breaking the traditional norm of bridal fashion and creating their own unique style and stories that I just fell in love with, and couldn’t understand why they weren’t here available to brides in Northern Ireland or Ireland. In amongst the buzz and excitement of discovering something new I also loved the idea of working with women and being able to provide an experience that we can tailor and make personal so that a bride can cherish felt so comforting to me. I took the plunge and opened Ivy & White on Valentine’s day - I still can’t believe it’s all real even a year and a half later.
What makes Ivy & White unique?
Ivy & White has its own unique style and attitude towards bridal. We search for bridal designers that align with our branding and our girl (as we refer to our brides as) unique style and inspirations. The collection at Ivy & White has been carefully curated for the bold but minimal, romantic yet fierce bride searching for something modern to celebrate her love in. Each piece has been hand-picked by our stylist with our bride in mind, sourcing beautiful silk, lace and embellished pieces for a fashion conscious woman. We want to stray away from the mainstream by creating our own bridal haven to help bring creativity and inspiration to our styling sessions. Our airy studio is inspired by industrial lighting teamed with copper and black railings, furry rugs, white wash paneling and Pampas grass. We also have a beautiful sky dome that allows natural light in, which is perfect for creating a spot light so that our dresses can shine. I love it when brides come in and automatically feel relaxed and excited –
it’s our cosy girl den.
What are the top bridal trends at present?
Okay so I know it has been in for a while but I am all down for a cape. I love the
drama of a cape – that acts like a veil or changes a dress without too much
hassle. I also love a ruffle or pleated skirt for effortless movement or abstract
tailoring for a bride wanting something minimal but still edgy. We have just signed NEWHITE a really cool Los Angeles designer that creates their collection based on separates that can be linked together to create separate looks throughout the day. I find our bride wants smart accessories that take her from day to night without meaning she has to leave the party for too long.
Tell us a bit about how you source your stock/brands?
One of my favourite parts of my job is sourcing new bridal designers that are emerging or breaking traditions. Our bride comes to us because she wants something that she hasn’t already seen before - she allows us to bring diversity to our collections, high fashion and new designs to the studio. We travel to find these designers making stops to New York in October, Barcelona in March and London in April. Our recent trip to New York has been one of my favourites as we were invited to see top bridal designers display in penthouse suites and apartments. We picked up two new exclusive designers NEWHITE & Prea James both making headlines in bridal for their designs and aesthetics. We were so lucky to bag both designers after hearing both are in high demand by stockist wanting to showcase their designs.
How far in advance of your wedding do you advise for wedding dress shopping?
I always say 9 -12 months is the dream time frame. It allows you to shop around, scout designers and find inspiration without getting overwhelmed. Our designer lead time for orders is 6-7 months and I suggest 1 month for alterations. This is a recommended time frame to prevent stress and allow for last minute changes. In saying this we have had brides come to us last minute and we have got a dress ordered and ready for under 3 months - We will do our best to work with you and your timeframe.
What do you love most about your job?
I love getting to connect with a bride who instantly recognises our brands and style - It is so fun getting to help her pick different options for her wedding day, and helping her step out of her comfort zone, yet still representing her unique personality, her character and style. I think part of the reason why I love my job so much as a bridal stylist is that you are always surprised and sometimes can’t call it when a bride is choosing her dress. I have seen it so many times when the wild card has been the chosen dress, and it really is special when a bride finds something that even she wasn’t expecting.
What are the plans for the year ahead at Ivy & White?
My biggest goal is to keep pushing Ivy & White so that more people find our
hidden treasure. It has been such a successful first year, beyond our predictions and I think my goal is to keep topping each year as they come. We have been so fortunate to have such wonderful brides who we have really connected with on a one to one level and now watching them get married are precious moments. I have big plans for Ivy & White and have been so lucky to fall in with a network of creatives who also love our brands. We have seen our shop featured on BBC programs, been part of an epic photoshoot in Marbella and now getting ready for some exciting events in 2020. I am so excited for Ivy & White and what the future holds.
How would you describe an Ivy & White bride?
Our girls are so fun! They are the life of the party, well dressed, loved for their spontaneity, creativity and charm.
Hopefully we get to meet many new faces this year with new brides getting ready for ... 2021, too early? maybe! - or maybeee not! ha.