Providing the wedding dress experience for brides to be| Vicky Meets
Oxana GrasmuckDirector, Minster Bridal Boutique, Tangmere
• How did Minster Bride come about?
I worked in fashion design and tailoring in Germany. When I came to the UK I started doing alterations for bridal shops in Dorset. I loved working with bridal gowns because every dress and every bride was so individual. I really fancied having my own bridal shop, but the risk was huge. But then I found my first shop in Wimborne. The shop is very small and I really wanted to have more collections to offer brides. I had been thinking about a second shop, but the timing was never quite right. Until now.
• Your boutique is in Tangmere on the site of the old village stores. Why did you choose this spot?
Because the space is perfect. Open plan, there are three very spacious dressing rooms and even room for a catwalk for bridal shows. I knew how I wanted it to look, but my partner Stephen helped me a lot and put everything into 3D. There is also parking right outside.
• What sort of dresses do you stock?
We have exclusive designers to our boutique. When we choose collections we are thinking about what will work for us and our brides. I’m currently working with a lot of prestigious Australian designers. It’s a hard job to choose. A colleague and I recently spent a whole day choosing four collections!
• What should brides keep in mind when looking at dresses?
It is easier to work with a bride who is open minded and who trusts us as stylists. That way we can consider her body shape and skin tone and find something that really works for her. Make a mood board for inspiration, of course, but be prepared to move from it. And be mindful who you bring with you; mum and maybe a sister or a best friend, but people whose opinion you trust and value. Also remember that bridal gowns take a long time to arrive and to be altered. Ideally start looking 12-18 months in advance.
• Should brides choose the dress before anything else?
Choose the venue first. When you decide on your venue that will help you make your dress choice. If you were getting married in a castle, for instance, you wouldn’t wear a bohemian-style dress. So choose your venue and then book your dress appointments.
• What are the highlights of your job?
When the bride says yes to the dress! We often cry happy tears, but it is a job that is full of joy. Buying a wedding dress is a real experience for a bride and we like to make sure that they feel that.
• Do royal weddings have an impact on trends?
As well as the dress she wore for the ceremony, Meghan wore a halter neck in the evening. Both were immediately copied. But while girls like to try them on they don’t always buy them.
• And the ultimate question: do you like wedding cake?
I love wedding cake!
For more information visit www.minsterbridal.co.uk
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