One look at Veilmonté Bridal Showroom and I want to convince my husband to have another wedding just so I can wear one of these dresses! Owner Marina Smith shares more about her story, her love of dresses, and how this unique bridal shop came to Burlington.
How did you get into wedding dresses?
I've had a passion for beauty all of my life. I am from the Republic of Moldova (Eastern Europe) and beauty is an important factor in our culture. I developed a sense for fashion and the latest beauty trends at a young age, and I always wanted to be a part of an industry that would let me express my passion for beauty.
Our dresses come from a factory in my country that has been creating the most amazing designs for over twenty five years. The owners of the factory are my family friends, and I grew up with their children. When I was younger, I helped at the factory with little things and I absolutely loved being around the wedding dresses!
Flash forward to adulthood...I came to the United States ten years ago, never liked my job at the time. When I first went back home seven years ago, I visited our family friends (the factory owners) and they asked me to be their official representative in the US. I was thrilled by this idea and I started preparing to open my own showroom. I took my time doing research about the American wedding industry - I even worked part-time at wedding events to really understand the traditions and trends.
After moving to Vermont from Chicago, I did a lot of research about the New England wedding industry. The brides here gave me positive feedback, so I decided that it was the perfect time and location to open my showroom. My American Dream finally came true and I cannot be happier to serve the brides in our community!
How would you describe your shop's style?
Different - that is what all brides say about my shop.
What inspires your work?
The ability to accomodate ANY bride. We are the only shop that offers custom size and design in Vermont, and we are very flexible when it comes to options. I have an immense passion for what I do!
Any special tips for brides for choosing a wedding dress?
Your not expected to purchase your dress at the first appointment. Take your time when shopping for the most important dress of your life! Make sure you feel comfortable in your dress (moving, seating, hugging people etc.).
Your dress has to represent your personality; you might look amazing in a sparkly princess dress but if you are a reserved person and that's outside your comfort zone, you might not feel comfortable on your wedding day having that look.
Other people's opinion matters, but the choice is ultimately yours. I suggest brides take pictures and look at those to help make a final selection.
Start shopping for your dress one year before your wedding. I recommend going right after picking your venue, as the style of your wedding will be defined off your look as a bride!
What's your favorite moment during the wedding dress selection process?
When the bridal party starts crying saying "Yes!" to the bride's dream wedding dress. That moment is priceless, and I often cry with them.
What's your favorite thing to do in VT? / Local spot to visit? Etc.
I like to go biking on the Colchester Bike Path - this is my favorite place to meditate and it is where I get the most creative ideas for my shop. I also like watching the sunset over the Champlain Lake in the summer at the Spot on the Dock Restaurant in Burlington.
If you weren't in this business, what would you do?
I would be a travel blogger as I love to travel.
What's a fun fact about yourself?
I am a fun person overall...I go on a diet every Monday. ;)
What's a song that always gets you on the dance floor?
I absolutely love dancing. I am a fan of house & electronic music. Any song makes me dance. .
Thank you, Marina! Learn more about Veilmonté Bridal Showroom in the vendor guide, and visit them in Burlington!