One client that Statement are always delighted to work with is Heidi Waring, creator and director of vintage-inspired bridal boutique, Lace & Co., which was established last year in Horbury. This week, we managed to catch up with Heidi about her last year in business, what inspires her and her most exciting moments.
1. Sum up your business in no more than 10 words.
Exclusive bridal boutique specialising in vintage, bohemian and fairytale dresses.
2. Describe your typical client – who do your dresses and services appeal to?
Our brides are wonderfully unique girls from all over the country who are typically looking for something the're not able to find in a contemporary bridal shop. Our vision is to find the dream wedding dress that perfectly matches each bride's own personality; whether it be a fun and flirty spotted tulle & lace 1950s wedding dress, a vintage-inspired apricot tea-length dress, or a divine full length 1920s silk bridal gown.
3. What was your initial inspiration for setting up your business?
I guess I am an incurable romantic at heart. I love anything related to weddings but there is something particularly special about wedding gowns; the different styles from the thirties art-deco style dress to the fifties intricate lace, tea-length dresses to today’s more modern, sexy column gowns. I set up the boutique following years of dreaming about having my own boutique filled with stunning, beautiful, elegant wedding dresses.
4. What drives you forward?
I have always been very driven in any role that I have held. I believe if you are going to do something, you absolutely have to put your heart and soul into it and I am very passionate about making the boutique a success. I would love nothing more than for the boutique to be renowned for having the most exquisite, fun and unique dresses, as well as unbeatable customer service.
5. What’s been the most exciting moment since you opened Lace & Co.?
Opening the boutique last October was a dream come true and the culmination of many years' hard work. Each step since, from the first dress arriving from the designer to the first sale to a bride and the first actual wedding has been a major milestone and an exciting new achievement. Earlier this year, we were awarded the Best Independent Retailer in the Wakefield Retail Awards 2014, at which Statement was actually a sponsor, and that was a fantastic moment, being surrounded by friends and peers from various industries right across our own lovely city. We were also nominated recently for the Best New Bridal Retailer by Bridal Buyer Magazine and have featured as a top bridal boutique in British Vogue Magazine, so it’s all been a very exciting time!
6. What encouraged you to put more focus on your digital presence? When you initially contacted Statement, what were you looking for? What were your key goals?
Having a digital presence was actually a major priority for us right from the outset. I knew that as a relative newcomer to the bridal business, the best way for us to approach major dress designers and wedding suppliers and get them on board would be using technology to clearly demonstrate who we were and what we were trying to achieve. Having a strong brand was going to be absolutely key to our success so about six months before I opened the boutique I approached Statement to create a website for me. I didn’t want to use a basic template bought from a faceless IT supplier - the products I wanted to sell were luxury, high-end items and I needed a website that matched our ethos and vision with a team behind it that I could speak to and get advice from if necessary and that would be happy to continue to develop the website as our business expanded. It was by using Statement’s creativity and experience that we initially developed the website, discussed ideas around the company logo and produced artistic business cards and flyers; hence the Lace & Co. brand was born.
7.What kind of comments do people make about your brand & website?
Right from the outset we have had fantastic feedback about the website and on our brand. Many of the contacts we have made over the last year have been directly via the website and approximately 80% of our initial appointment requests from brides are made via the website’s contact form. It completely encompasses everything we are trying to show about ourselves; who we are, what our vision is and the high level of customer service that we provide.
It also allows us to add regular updates, guides and news feeds which means we can interact 24 hours a day if necessary with our customers. Because we specialise in non-traditional bohemian and vintage inspired wedding dresses, we get brides contacting us from all over the country and the main reason they can do that is because they can find us through our digital presence on social media and via our website.
8.What’s next for Lace & Co.?
It’s been an amazing year and a fantastic start for Lace & Co. As we come up to our 1
st birthday, we are now looking forward to being able to continue to get our message out there, to expand the business and our lovely collection of dresses and to enhancing our digital presence even further. Statement is going to be a key player in us being able to do that!
If you want to know more about this fantastic independent retailer then go visit their website!