With over two million weddings taking place in the United States each year, the wedding industry is big business. Opening a bridal shop might be your ticket to great success in the ever-growing bridal market. But starting any small business takes perseverance, dedication and passion. There is a lot of hard work, but with it can come many great rewards.
If your dream is to help a bride find the gown, veil and accessories of her dreams, all while immersing yourself in the newest bridal fashions and trends, you may want to open a bridal shop.
Search for a location for the bridal shop. Be sure there is ample square footage for dress and accessory samples, fitting rooms, inventory and displays. Select a space that upholds the image you envision for your shop, though you may have to do some cosmetic work (painting, flooring, adjusting fixtures) to customise it to your liking.
Choose the inventory and samples you'd like on hand. Speak to the manufacturer regarding popular sizes to order. Create visually pleasing displays and vignettes to show available items. Offer as extensive of a selection as you can afford.
Order business supplies such as a computer, cash register, credit card machine, fax machine, copy machine, clipboards, file cabinets, file folders, envelopes and paper.
Prepare to advertise your business by ordering business cards, establishing a website and printing flyers. Design a sign for your storefront that is representative of your store's image. If your budget allows, have shopping bags, magnets and pens printed with your store's name.
Hire employees whom you can delegate duties to. Bridal consultants work with the bride to choose the perfect dress and accessories, an office manager will help with day-to-day business operations and a seamstress can make alterations to dresses on-site. You may also want to hire a Web designer, graphic designer or image consultant for short-term projects.
Please remember that starting a small business requires upfront capital and a thorough business plan.