Post-Lockdown: The New Norm When Shopping For Your Wedding Dress
For many brides, that big moment of choosing your wedding dress is certainly a highlight of planning, but what will the bridal boutique experience look like in a post-lockdown world? We recently spoke to Ellie Sanderson, the multi-award-winning and long-standing bridal boutique owner. We asked her what’s next, here’s what she had to say…
“First of all, I want to say how sorry I am for all the brides and grooms that have had to postpone their big day. I know from first-hand experience chatting with my brides that it is heartbreaking in so many ways. Somehow, all this alone time has made us focus on family and the small things. I am sure that when your wedding happens, the celebration will be so much sweeter knowing all your loved ones are there and safe. Without a doubt, it will be the party of the century when it finally happens!”
So what does the new norm look like when you are shopping for your wedding dress?
“I think we all know that things will have to change. That doesn’t mean there won’t be fun because there will be fun! There will be laughter, there will be giggles and there will be joy in finding your dream dress.
COVID -19 is not forever but it is for now. Because of that, we do have to change things dramatically to keep us all safe.
Booking Your Appointment
Our boutiques will continue to offer our brides the ease of booking online via our appointment scheduler. However, there are some key things that brides really do need to do prior to booking an appointment with any bridal shop.
- Spend some time on the shop’s website. Take a good look at the dresses and the style of collections they have available.
- Check out the shop’s Instagram and Facebook too, as often you will get a sense of the shop’s personal style from their social media feed. There may also be dresses to see that are not available yet on their website.
- Read the Guides for Brides and Google reviews about the shops you want to go to. Make sure you are happy that they are the kind of retailer you can put your trust in.
- Ping the shop an email if you have any questions and see how they respond.
- Make sure you are clear on the price range of dresses.
My reasoning for these five points is simple; it would be crazy in these times to travel to a shop and then realise that their dresses are just not your style or not within your price range. The days of going to a shop just because you can are sadly no longer with us. Choose one or two shops and make them brilliant choices.
(Please bear in mind that you cannot simply drop in anymore, you MUST schedule an appointment so that you are expected and it’s safe to visit)
Brilliant ideas Ellie, especially the one about looking at Guides for Brides reviews.
So, tell us now what you think the new appointments will be like?
I have spent weeks thinking and taking advice on this. Every shop will have different ideas on what to do to make it as safe as possible. Frankly, If they don’t have a clear plan then you need to be sure that you are happy to go there.
The Appointment at the Bridal Boutique: the protocols at this moment and what to expect upon arrival
Below I have outlined the 10-point protocols that I will insist on at ELLIE SANDERSON.
- Prior to the Brides arrival, the shop will have been deep cleaned thoroughly and all touchpoints disinfected including door handles, sofas, fittings room, and WC.
- Although the scientific advice is that the chances of contracting the virus from textiles are very slim, we intend to add an extra layer of safety by steaming all dresses between appointments.
- The bride will be allowed one guest, clearly limiting the number of people in the shop is vital to make it as safe as possible for all involved.
- The bride and her guest will have their temperature taken upon arrival. Don’t worry, we have a magic wand to point at your forehead and it is not intrusive (my team will have been checked that day too).
- You will be greeted by me or one of my team. We will be fit for work and healthy and we will be working alone to make it as safe as possible for all.
- The team will be wearing disposable mouth and nose masks and gloves. We will supply you both with disposable mouth and nose masks and hand sanitizer. You will be asked to remove outdoor shoes.
- We will kick off with our usual glass of bubbly and chat about your wedding day and discuss the look and style you have in mind for your wedding dress. All the while, socially distancing from each other.
- With all your ideas in mind, we will start the consultation by showing you lots of styles and letting you pick your favourites to try.
- We will then allow you to try those dresses on with the assistance of your guest and if we need to assist to fit the dress we will use a full facial Visor and fit the dress from behind so as not to invade your personal space.
- Time to strut your stuff! Once you have the dress on, you can come back into the studio and that’s when the magic happens. We have some new and brilliant new systems available on our TV screen that will enable you to virtually connect with your bridesmaids or besties.
As you can see, things will be very different, things will have changed compared to pre lockdown, things are serious and we take our brides’ safety and our own safety very seriously.
It’s also important to remember that whilst all this scary stuff has to happen, our brides will be in a beautiful shop, surrounded by gorgeous dream dresses. They’ll also have their mum or best friend with them, their tribe will be online with them and they will be choosing the most important dress of their life. We will do all we can to make what is not that normal, feel normal.
We won’t be able to hug our bride when she finds her dress but we have a little surprise up our sleeves to make that moment go POP”
Thank you Ellie, it is wonderful to hear those really clear ideas and plans.
Ellie also stocks the UK’s top labels; this means that her lead times are shorter than normal, which is brilliant during these tricky times. Ellie offers bespoke design changes to really personalise your dress as she has really close working relationships with all of her designers.
Enquire with Ellie Sanderson about your bridal appointment today.
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