It’s that time of year again! This weekend I’m off to New York International Bridal Week.
Twice each year (in April and October) I join fellow retailers to get a look inside designers’ new collections. It’s an exciting trip—and a whirlwind, too.
I’ll spend Sunday visiting designers that are based in New York, such as Modern Trousseau, Carol Hannah and Theia. On Monday, I’ll visit designers that aren’t New York based, such as Ivy and Aster and Lea-Ann Belter. These designers are set up at pier 92, a glammed-up warehouse. In total, I’ll likely visit around 10 or so designers to check out their new looks. So I certainly make the most of my 36-hour trip!
The setup at the piers
Here I am posed with some fan favorites at a Martha Stewart Wedding Party:
Darcy Miller (Martha Stewart Weddings Editor), Randy Fenoli (Say Yes to the Dress), Austin Scarlet (Project Runway) & Martha herself!
A Look Back: Past Bridal Market Weekends
As I gear up for Bridal Week, it’s fun to reflect upon some of my favorite market moments in the past.
At the first bridal market I went to for TGS, I fell in love with Ivy and Aster’s “Duchess.” It was shown in blush and paired with the ‘Prima’ lace cap. Shortly after attending, Martha Stewart Weddings Magazine called to ask what my favorite gowns were, and I mentioned Duchess as a top contender. They published the pick in the fall 2011 issue.
Duchess at Bridal Market
Our shout-out in Martha Stewart Weddings
Another favorite moment was when I saw Modern Trousseau’s “Leah” gown. It was essentially love at first sight. In the past, I had sold another designer’s dress with a ruched, crisscrossed bodice and textured A-line skirt. But this one was even better because it has textured lace. It’s perfect—and a little more fashion forward and fun.
A Look Ahead
So what do I expect to see this weekend? Ball gowns shined at Bridal Week in October, so I’m curious as to whether they’ll continue to take reign. I also think we’ll continue to see more lace and textured looks. In previous years, designers have featured more strapless gowns in their collections, but I think both strapped and strapless looks will make equal showings. And I’m guessing we’ll be seeing lots of blush and color—which I love!
Yes, Bridal Week is fun, but it’s work! The tricky part of the process is that I view gowns both as a fan and as a business owner. The first question I ask myself when I see a gown becomes: Is this a good fit for the TGS bride? Within that, I’m wondering: Who will wear it? When? Where? So I consider if the dress would pair well with the local venues in Michigan and Northwest Ohio areas, and for what season it’s appropriate. I contemplate what shade our typical bride would love the most. And of course I think of the pricing, too, ensuring that it’s within range of our offerings. Additionally, I don’t want gowns that compete with one another. I want each selection to be purposeful—and to be the perfect pick for one of our brides.
I always look forward to each Big Apple trip and all it has in store. I’ll be regularly updating our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts this weekend, so stay tuned for updates! Check back to the blog next week too, so you can hear all about how my visit went.
And now for a few more favorites:
With the Ivy & Aster Ladies
With Lindsie Jones, Haute Bride jewelry designer
Designer Carol Hannah Whitfield
Favorites from Lea-Ann Belter in October 2012.