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What Working in a Bridal Shop Has Taught Me as an Event Management Major

I go to school for event management and love every minute of it. Everything about my classes makes sense to me, and I am able to be my best self and do my best work. I hope that when I graduate I will have the ability to work in the wedding side of the events industry, hopefully as an independent planner. 

I have had multiple jobs over the past few years related to this that have helped shape both my love and understanding of the industry. I have been a day-of-event manager, worked in a restaurant, and interned with a planner remotely during the pandemic. One of my favorite jobs that gave me a lot of hands-on experience has to be my current job. I am a bridal stylist at a bridal shop and through this position, I have learned so much about the industry and the way that brides think. I think this is very useful and has helped me immensely. 

A wedding dress is one of the first things a bride purchases or even thinks about when deciding things for her big day. Typically, her venue is first so that she can have an idea of what dress would work, but it at most is a close second. She has a vision for her big day, and it all starts with the venue and the dress. When I am working with them, she tells me her vision and it is amazing to hear all of her plans for decor, venue, bridesmaids, etc. She gets so excited and it makes the dress finding process so much more fun. It also allows me to get a clear vision and make sure what I am going to pull is going to be perfect.

This job also requires patience, which is important for anyone in this major to have. Especially when a bride is indecisive, it can be very hard to narrow down what she likes. Sometimes she has 18 dresses she wants to try, so speaking with her before pulling dresses to narrow down exactly what she is looking for can really help you as a stylist pick the best choices for her. 

It is amazing to see her come out in the first dress. At this time, she sees herself as a bride for the first time, and this is the moment everything really clicks for her. Even if it is not the dress, there are usually tears shed between family and friends, as it becomes real for everyone. These are the moment’s people in the industry live for seeing everyone so happy and excited for the event. 

After that, you go through a few others. Some are okay, others she hates, and then when you run out of dresses in the dressing room, you all take a moment to collect yourself and think logically. She usually has two or three favorites and wants to see them again with veils and tiaras and maybe even a sparkly belt. So, you do that for her. You want her to feel magical and that’s how you accomplish this. This relates to the industry because once she starts planning the rest of the day, she’s going to go back and forth with the different themes and items a million times, before finally settling on the one. 

Now, you have done her all up, put her back in her favorites, and it is time for a decision. You talk her through each of her favorite options, as well as her reservations about each. With each reservation, you try to come up with a solution that will ease her mind and allow her to choose a dress she loves with no hesitation. Then, you give her some minutes to think it over, and she makes a decision! Even though you barely know her, you are overjoyed for her and are so happy that she found something she loves and feels confident in. 

Before she leaves, she rings the bell to signify she has found the perfect dress. This is one of the most special moments she will have while working with you. Other customers and employees gather to clap and cheer for her and it makes it even more special. The next moment she will feel like this is walking down the aisle or sharing a first kiss with her spouse at the altar, but you were able to help her feel this way in this one hour, which she will always remember as one of the most meaningful for her.

Anna Wall

Lasell '22

Lasell University Event Management Student, Class of 2022. She loves llamas, event planning, and country music :)
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