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Vancity Vendor – Isabelle’s Bridal

October 14th, 2011 by Jeannine

 
Vancity Vendor: Isabelle's Bridal

*** Update: December, 2014 – Isabelle’s Bridal has had a change in ownership but still exists at the same location and giving the same level of customer service as before. ***

The city of North Vancouver had a lack of bridal stores at one time, that is, until sisters Cheri and Mona Hamm decided to do something about it. Cheri had always loved wedding dresses and aspired to start a business with Mona. They took advantage of this opportunity and filled that niche by opening Isabelle’s Bridal. They named the store after an extraordinary woman, their mother, who singlehandedly raised them after their father passed away. For more than 6 years, they have been dressing up Vancouver’s blushing brides for their wedding day!

At Isabelle’s, not only will you find wedding dresses, but also dresses for your bridesmaids, flower girls, and of course, your mothers. They can help you bring together your bridal look with accessories such as veils, jewelry, and shoes. Wedding dress prices range from a very affordable $450 to around $6,000 for those with a more expensive taste ;) Bridesmaid dresses are between $150 and $300, but they offer a discount if you buy at least 3 or if the bride has purchased her dress there too. Dresses are usually ordered new from the designer but you have the option to buy off the rack if the dress is discontinued, if there’s a time constraint, or if budget is an issue. It takes 6 to 8 months for a wedding dress to be ordered so act early. When it finally gets here, Isabelle’s Bridal’s staff steam it, give it a look-over to make sure nothing’s wrong and then call you so you can finally see your dress for the first time. They offer alterations service in-house and your dress can be stored at their insured facility up until the wedding day, to ensure that nothing will happen to it.

You can find dresses by these designers at Isabelle’s Bridal:

  • Jim Hjelm and Blush by Jim Hjelm
  • Paloma Blanca
  • Mikaella
  • Alfred Sung
  • Alfred Angelo
  • Dessy
  • After Six

… and many more! They sales and promotions from time to time. One that’s coming up is a food drive in November where they ask brides to bring in 10 or more cans of food and in return, Isabelle’s will pay the tax on their wedding dress. A win for the food bank and a win for your wallet! Keep an eye out for promotions on their Facebook page, Twitter, and even here on Vancity Bride!

A Few Words With Cheri…

What do you have to offer to brides with lower budgets?
“We carry a wide selection of dresses with a wide range of pricing and try to accommodate any budget.  We have new dresses for as low as $450.00 or so.  We also have sample sales throughout the year where you can get great dresses at much lower prices.  One great tip for brides on a budget is if you buy a dress off the rack, most of the time you can get a discount on it as opposed to ordering in a new one.”

How do you choose which designers and dresses to sell? 
“Mona and I go to market two times a year and see the various dresses that our current designers have to offer.  We pick the best of the best from their selection and then view new lines to see if there is any interest in other lines.  It is not all about how great the dresses are, we need to know that the supplier is reliable, that their dresses are made of excellent quality, and that they are capable of servicing our brides properly.  There is so much more behind the scenes that matters when picking out beautiful gowns for our clients!”

What are your criteria for choosing dresses? 
Our criteria for picking out the dresses we carry are as follows:

  • Knowing that our clientele will like it
  • The quality of the dress is the best
  • The fit of the dress is good.  A dress will only sell if the fit is good.
  • The retail price point of the dress fits our clientele
  • The supplier is reliable with delivery and their communication with us is good
  • We like the company or designer of the dress

Can you get certain wedding dresses in different colours?
“Wedding dresses will most often come in a white or in an ivory.  Some come in Champagne, Gold or Silver or a variation of those colours.  The odd dress will come in Red or Black.  If there is a colour request, Alfred Angelo is great for throwing the option of adding colour to your dress in the fabric or in the detail and they have 55 colours to choose from.”

What kind of dress would make the biggest impact on a small budget?
“That depends on what style the bride is looking for.  A dress all comes down to fit.  If it fits the bride and looks amazing on her figure…it can look like a million dollar dress even though she has only spent $500.00.  Wedding dresses have to suit the bride’s figure and her personality.”

What do you enjoy most about your job?
“I love seeing the bride in her dress when it is all altered to her figure and she is ready to get married.  I love it when the bride truly loves her dress and just can’t wait to wear it on her wedding day.  I also love working with my sister and the other women who work in our store.  We are all like family and it is so important to us all for a bride to come in and feel like family.”

What one piece of advice would you give to a bride when it’s time to choose a dress?
“Pick the dress that you feel the best in!  If you feel great in it, then that is the one that you are going to wear the best.  A bride often has many opinions to consider, but it is very important for her to listen to herself and get the dress that she really wants.  She is the one who is going to wear it and look back on it for the rest of her life.”

What one piece of advice would you give to a bride and groom for their wedding?
“Believe it or not, it is not about the dress…or the wedding.  That day is about bringing together all the most important people in your life to celebrate one of the biggest moments in your life and know that you are supported.  It is so easy to get caught up in all of the details which really don’t matter.  Enjoy your wedding day and just take it all in!  And don’t sweat the small stuff!”

To see more photos of Isabelle’s Bridal, go to my Facebook page.

To contact Isabelle’s Bridal, visit their website.
Do you have what it takes to be a Vancity Vendor? Apply here.

All store photos courtesy Vancity Bride, photo of Cher and Mona courtesy Isabelle’s Bridal

Vendor prices are subject to change. All prices quoted are accurate to the date published.

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