We first met the ladies behind Froufrou last year at the Leeds Castle Wedding Show. Since then their bridal boutique in Tunbridge Wells has gone from strength to strength. Their stunning range of bridal wear includes contemporary vintage inspired gowns as well as a unique collection of original vintage dresses. And if you still can’t decide from what’s on offer they will do their best to source your perfect dress for you.
We caught up with owners, Helena and Nicole, to find out more about them and how they chose their collection of dresses.
How did you become bridal shop owners?
We are old school friends and having travelled through life’s ups and downs together it put us in good stead for a business partnership. Growing up we both loved anything to do with fashion and although we have very different styles we generally agree on most things. With backgrounds in graphic design, fashion photography, fashion styling and hair and make-up we have put our talents together and our passion for all things beautiful to create a bridal boutique with a difference.
In the early planning stages we started jotting down ideas, looking at different inspirations and creating mood boards, from there our dream just snowballed. We are not really sure how we got to this point as we now have a stunning boutique full of beautiful gowns and an eclectic mix of vintage and vintage inspired accessories. What’s not to love! We really do feel very lucky.
How did you choose the designers for the boutique?
We quickly discovered what we probably always new; we have very expensive taste! We initially loved the idea of stocking British designers whose dresses were made in the UK. We needed designers who complimented each other and covered a range of styles. We straight away had our hearts set on Stewart Parvin and David Fielden and after a first hand look at their dresses they were both a must. The classic couture designs and tailoring of Stewart’s work is a dream for any bride lusting after timeless perfection in a gown. David Fielden’s work was just as alluring with his high fashion take on a traditional wedding gown, often with elements of a bygone era. For a girl who is led more by fashion these gowns will not disappoint. These two designers had set the bar for the boutique. We then added to our collection with gowns by Lyn Ashworth, as well as Matthew Williamson’s debut bridal collection.
It wasn’t until after we had opened and were contacted by two American designers, Sarah Seven and Ivy&Aster, that we considered stocking gowns from across the pond and we haven’t looked back. Girls are loving the American styles and we are very proud of being the only UK stockist.
What are your top three tips for brides when choosing a dress?
Be open-minded. You can’t tell by looking at a dress on the hanger if it will suit your body shape. Often brides surprise themselves by pushing their boundaries and end up with a dress they would never have initially picked out.
Wear good underwear! At your fitting wear a strapless bra and knickers in a neutral shade. This will totally help you get a better vision of how a dress will look. It still surprises us when girls turn up with their usual black Wonderbra!
Be decisive. Many girls always dream of finding the one perfect dress! And they might well have but it completely passes them by due to their inability to know what style they are looking for, or how they want to be perceived on the big day. We see so many girls who have turned into serial wedding dress shoppers, trying on hundreds but still not finding “the one”. Our advice is to visit a selection of bridal boutiques and try on enough dresses to satisfy yourself that you have found what looks good on you. Just keep in mind if you put on a dress that makes everyone cry STOP LOOKING, you are not going to top it!
So thanks to the ladies for taking some time out to talk with us. For further info on how to make your dedicated two-hour appointment visit their website. With gorgeous dresses, professional and friendly guidance, as well as champagne, organic teas and delicious locally baked cupcakes on offer prepare to be spoilt – we know you will be!