Getting to know: The Modern Bride

INTERVIEW BY CHRIS TIESSEN

WHEN IT COMES TO BRIDAL BOUTIQUES, CERTAIN DESTINATIONS SHINE BRIGHTER THAN OTHERS. AND WE’D HAZARD A GUESS THAT VERY FEW HOLD A LIGHT TO GUELPH’S THE MODERN BRIDE – A MAGNIFICENTLY-APPOINTED BOUTIQUE ELEGANTLY PERCHED ON THE TOP FLOORS OF THE HISTORIC (AND RECENTLY RESTORED) PETRIE BUILDING. OWNED BY MOTHER AND DAUGHTER DONNA AND JESS HIRST, THE MODERN BRIDE DRAWS CLIENTS FROM AROUND THE REGION AND AROUND THE WORLD. QUITE SIMPLY, A VISIT TO THIS DOWNTOWN BUSINESS IS BOUND TO BE A MEMORABLE EXPERIENCE. WE RECENTLY SAT DOWN WITH DONNA AND JESS TO FIND OUT (IN THEIR WORDS) HOW THEY ENVISAGE THE VERY SPECIAL SERVICE THEY OFFER.

THE MODERN BRIDE INHABITS PERHAPS THE BEST REAL ESTATE IN DOWNTOWN GUELPH. WHAT ACCOUNTS FOR THE MAGICAL QUALITY OF YOUR SPACE?
We’ve got almost four thousand square feet on the third and fourth floors of Guelph’s splendidly restored Petrie Building. Fifteen and eighteen foot high ceilings, as well as floor to ceiling windows overlooking the downtown, contribute to the chic ambience of this gorgeous space. Original plank flooring and millwork as well as exposed stone and brick throughout the interior mix perfectly with the white walls to create a cool metropolitan vibe that resonates with our clientele.

YOU SEEM TO BE VERY BUSY. HOW MANY FITTINGS DO YOU AVERAGE ON A GIVEN DAY?
We have three beautiful private and semi-private rooms allowing us to accommodate fifteen to eighteen appointments each day. We’re open for appointments Tuesday through Sunday, though weekends are particularly popular. We’re usually fully booked two to three weeks in advance. 

YOUR DEVOTED CLIENTELE COME FROM ALL OVER. HOW FAR HAVE SOME OF YOUR BRIDES TRAVELED FOR THEIR DRESS? 
We’re so grateful to have local clientele. At the same time, we have been pleased to work with brides from Toronto, Vancouver, New York, England, Australia and beyond.

YOU’RE A MOTHER-DAUGHTER COMPANY. HOW DO YOU BALANCE YOUR WORK-LIFE RELATIONSHIP?
It’s tough finding that balance. Regular visits with our pets to the dog park or relaxed lunches together – simply as mother and daughter – are fun and relaxing.

WHAT THREE DESIGNERS MIGHT BRIDES LOOK OUT FOR THIS WEDDING SEASON?
Our picks for 2019 are Divine Atelier (Romania), Alexandra Grecco (New York) and Anais Anette (Canada).

FOR FUTURE BRIDES – WHAT’S THE MOST IMPORTANT THING TO LOOK FOR IN A BRIDAL BOUTIQUE? 
The client experience. We work hard to ensure that our brides, as well as their families and friends, feel comfortable in our boutique. Each of our brides has her own personal consultant in a relaxed, private and conversational appointment space. 

AND IN A DRESS?
It’s tough finding that balance. The bride’s dress should embody and reflect the bride’s personality. She shouldn’t play an uncomfortable game of dress up but rather she should strive to achieve an elevated version of her own style. If she remains true to herself, she will find the gown that best expresses the elements of herself she wants to convey

The Modern Bride
15 WYNDHAM STREET NORTH, GUELPH
tmodernbride.com

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