Hey friends! You know what’s even better than being in business for yourself? Being in business with your sister! Well, to be honest I have no idea, because I am an only child, which means the idea of sharing anything with anyone — well, that seems dumb. But for Jenny and Mary, sisters who finish one another’s sentences and really seem to get along dandy, it’s a great idea. It all started with Jenny making Mary’s clothing growing up, and because these two are such good savers, using up every piece of lace and repurposing every strand of pearls, deciding to go into business together not only made sense, it was an unstoppable force.
Jenny and Mary didn’t just rely on one another when getting into the Minneapolis wedding business. Mary gives huge props to Ashley Ebert, “The Simply Elegant Group was a real tool in making our business successful, she took us on as a preferred vendor and that really opened up our business”.
Fun fact Mary’s son and Ashley went to school together, and Mary was the lunch lady, if you’re hungry for more, read on!
What did the beginning of their business look like?
When we first started, we were doing a lot of customs, bridesmaid dresses, flower girl dresses, alterations and repairs. As our company evolved it was pretty clear that bridal was where we needed to be. Two of Jenny’s daughters worked for Ashley a event planners, and business slowly took off as the economy got better, meanwhile we were both working full time. About four years ago we hooked up with some of the bridal consignment stores and then revamped our website, which was enormous. Before, by the middle of November our business would go dormant, but this year we’ve got 11 weddings for December! AND we are booked all the way through the 2017 wedding season!
I would have loved to wear my mom’s wedding dress but it really didn’t flatter my body type, but I did use both my mom and my mother-in-law’s veils. What’s your favorite part of custom bridal gown construction?
We love to do the redesign. Take mom or grandma’s dress and remake it into something that works specifically for that bride. Jenny makes beautiful garter belts, that can combine elements of old and new. We’re used to working with vintage jewelry and can design around an important piece of jewelry, like a family heirloom. The dresses that we make are 100% custom, and catered to what you want. Because we repurpose broken jewelry and use every piece of material possible the price stays affordable.
We don’t up charge on anything, it’s important to us that brides get what they want for a reasonable price.
We just finished a veil using lace from the mother’s veil and it matched the bride’s dress perfectly – we gathered it on a little comb and it is so beautiful. There is no reason to spend $300 on a fingertip veil, that isn’t even priced right!
What’s something you provide brides, that they won’t find just anywhere, an added bonus?
We have about 30 slips available for loan out to the brides. Once they are returned, we clean them and then send them out with the next bride! Paying $90 for a slip you are going to wear for 8 hours is just ridiculous. Because a wedding budget can get out of hand really fast we really want to provide as much as we can for the couple. We always suggest looking at consignment stores for dresses that are designer names but at a reasonable price, then get it altered to fit your body and compliment your style and personality.
When should bride’s start working with you, and how does the process work?
For custom and redesign we start with a consultation. We ask the hard questions — what’s your budget and style. Then we only show the bride ideas that are within their budget. If she has a $500 budget we aren’t going to show her $50/yard lace. The whole process is about 6 months (which includes 5-8 fittings). We build from the inside out, making sure the boning and cups are all in the right place, that’s important you know!
Sisters, so does that mean you guys always get along?
Just in October we put out 53 dresses. Which is enormous, we almost killed each other. Even though we are getting really big, we want to stay small, we really like it that way and our brides do too. The two-on-one service that we can provide throughout the design and fitting process.
Advice time. What are you seeing that more brides should do?
We have a lot of girls buying their dresses from overseas, and then they bring them to us and we FIX them. Needing a hem, better fitting waist line, smaller cups, or a long sleeve dress with too short of sleeves! We really work with anything and we don’t waste anything! We save it all. Light in the Box is one online Wedding Dress company that can really help brides get the dress they want for the budget they need.
If you’d like more information about JenMar Creations and your wedding attire you can find Mary and Jenny on their Website, on Facebook and on GooglePlus.
Next week on Getting Married in Minnesota, Jewel Tones Wedding Palette Inspiration.
As always clicking on the image takes you to the website of the photographer who took the photo, ie. photo credit, if you have any other questions leave them below! If you know of someone looking for a wedding alterations or custom design… tell them about JenMar Creations, Twin Cities Bridal Design Services!
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Prosperity, Love & Happiness,