If in fact this is true (and I believe it is), this is good news for Paloma Blanca and Mikaella. Technically, it is much more
difficult to produce a bridal gown with clean lines than a heavily embellished one. Most Imported Bridal Companies can “get
away” with producing their heavily beaded gowns by simply “hiding” the seams with “stuff”.
I get to go to the office in Toronto twice a year for a Sales Meeting, and a walk through our factory is fascinating! You could literally eat off of the floor, and the
computerized cutting machines are amazing (this is why our garments are so consistent in design, fit, and sizing).
My favorite part of the factory is the fusing machine. This little used additional step (which other companies don’t use) heat
fuses a backing on our dress panels, insuring a perfect seam every time. There’s a reason why a simple gown can be more
expensive that a heavily beaded one, but not all stores have the clientele to appreciate this. That is why we realize that we
are not the right fit for some stores - either because their customers can’t appreciate the simplicity of a design, or because
they can’t justify why a “plain” gown could sell for $2000 when the heavily beaded one is only $1500. One of the many
reasons for our increased reorder business over the past few years is that while our prices really haven’t gone up in the past
5 years... 2 years ago the “beaded one that is now $1500” was only $1200. And as time goes by, the price of the imported
bridal gowns are going to continue to rise, making our gowns even a better value!
As this move towards “Clean and Simple” continues, stores will need to re-evaluate the collections they carry. As less brides
are asking for heavily beaded gowns, you will need to have product to show them. If a buyer of a “typical” store analyzes her
inventory (and is honest with herself), she will most likely realize that she carries too many similar collections. How many
imported, mainstream, $1500 - $2500 companies that require 20 weeks (or more) for a reorder do you really need? If you
carry any 2 or 3 of the following, you probably have this look covered to a “T” - especially with their 3 or 4 divisions and their
high minimums. I’m referring to Maggie, Allure, Essence, Mori Lee, Pronovias, Justin Alexander, and Mon Cheri (and
maybe, Eddie K, and Casablanca…). All very good companies by the way, but how do you spell “O.V.E.R.K.I.L.L”? If you
talk to any Investment Broker, the word you will hear more than any is “diversification”, and it applies equally to bridal.
So please don't drop all of your other lines - there is still a customer for the “imported” look. But do be smart about who you
are carrying. Chose a few of the imported lines who offer the best service, and maybe even carry a 2nd division that they
offer because is makes sense based on your area and distribution. Unless you are a super store doing millions of dollars of
volume and feel like you HAVE to have every line out there, I suggest you choose wisely and consolidate your resources a
little. If you have also seen this trend towards “Clean and Simple” and are not currently carrying Paloma Blanca and/or
Mikaella; and any of this resonates with you... give me a call. if you already carry us then you know exactly what I mean, and
why we are known as the "Yes Company", and end up being your favorite resource to work with.
Whichever companies you choose to carry this season, I wish you health, happiness, peace, and love... H
Paloma Blanca F18 Intro