Emily recently got the chance to swing by Traverse City’s newest bridal boutique, One Oak Bride. Since the launch of our roving coffee truck in Traverse City last August, we have hoped to connect our stellar coffee service with coffee-loving couples planning their wedding in beautiful Northwest Lower Michigan. Since we are new on the wedding vendor scene here, we thought we’d seek some insights and inspiration from a stellar small business who’s hip to what’s shaking for the upcoming 2017 wedding season…
PC: What is the inspiration that drives OOB’s aesthetic?
Renee: Our aesthetic and our brand all ties into one. What makes us different is that we’re non-traditional. We came up with our motto: not stuffy, fluffy, poofy, floofy or traditional. That is our culture. It creeps into our photos and captions. We swear a lot, we’re a little sassy. That’s who we are. We are goofy and don’t take ourselves too seriously. It’s not just our brand, it’s who our brides are. Some of the women that come in immediately get it. They’re like, ‘I saw you, and it’s more like you’re friends than you are a salesperson.’
Annie: We took the experiences that we had when we were bridal dress shopping and made sure that we only had the parts that we liked.
Renee: Which was like none of it.
Annie: Well, the one where I ended up finding my dress, I had a great experience. It was more personal. What I hated was when you had to walk out and stand on a pedestal and it felt like the whole store was staring at you. It made me feel really uncomfortable. So we decided, we’re just going to make it really simple, make it more private, so that way it’s not so overwhelming.
PC: Do you have any basic starting advice for couples who have just begun the wedding planning process? At what point in the overall planning process does a bride usually start looking for her dress?
Renee: Everything starts with the venue. Once they find the venue and have that vision. You are looking for a different dress whether you are having a beach wedding as opposed to a church wedding. The venue just dictates so much more than I even realized. So starting there and then coming in with what matches who you are as a person, but also, you want to fit the place. Annie: I think researching which bridal shop resonates with you, is really important. The wedding dresses, most of them, you have to get the dress six months prior to the wedding. It’s very different than retail. It’s a much longer process. Brides often come back a few times, it’s and evolving relationship, and you have to make sure that every experience is the best experience.
PC: What are some of the big trends/themes for the 2017 wedding season, aesthetically or otherwise?
Annie: I think color has been being introduced slowly. Last season it was more of the blushy, rosy colors, but now I see it leaning toward the blue misty colors. Mismatched bridesmaids dresses. And that’s just one of those things that’s never going to go away, I hope.
Renee: Also, bridesmaids in white and the bride in color is really interesting.
Annie: I think the cropped two-piece is something that happened with the fashionistas last year, and now I think it’s starting to become more mainstream. So having two pieces, or a dress with a separate long sleeve piece you can take off for the reception. I think a lot of the feedback we’ve heard from brides, is that our dresses are so light! They’re not as heavy with that thick boning and all that stiff fabric. I think now much more flowy, thank goodness.